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Hydroponics lamp for seed germination & cuttings.  RSS feed

 
brent cooper
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Around November to February there is reduced light & temperature where I live in central England. I'm looking for a hydroponics lamp which is reasonably priced which can be used for seed germination and plant cuttings. Anyone know a suitable lamp?
 
Tom OHern
Posts: 236
Location: Seattle, WA
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A quick search on Google or Amazon will turn up many results for this. Go with something that is rated well and in your price range. But, if you are just getting seedlings and cuttings started and plan to transfer them outdoors, you can use regular florescent lighting tubes to start them out. The reason you need expensive bulbs for hydroponics is because you need to make sure you have the right light wavelengths during flowering and fruiting. But for just starting plants out, regular off the shelf florescent lights work fine.
 
Jeremiah Robinson
Posts: 92
Location: Madison, WI
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You can actually use any T5 fixture from any hardware store, presuming you get 4100k lamps. Been doing this for years. Works just fine.
 
Dave Quinn
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Hydroponics double fail
My first try at hydroponics with grow lights was to start some seedlings in wool plugs so when it’s warm enough for greenhouse I’d have a head start.
I got a tray with 150 plugs and planted 100 chilli seeds and 20 tomato and 20 courgette seeds
I soaked the plugs with nutrient rich food as advised before planting and then sprayed daily with a fine mist of nutrient rich food..
I kept them indoors initially with led lights, but virtually no heat. The temperature never dropped below 8deg C.
I built my thermostatically controlled ‘room’ and checked temperature levels – this took me about a fortnight, by which time some of the tomato seeds had sprouted.
I moved the tray to the room and set temp to 25 deg C and the tomato seeds grew, but still no sign of life for the chilli seeds.
I then stupidly turned up the temperature to about 30 deg on the advice of a friend, still no chilli seeds, but some of the latest tomato seedlings wilted and died. Luckily I caught it before the stronger ones did.
Still no sign of the Chilli seedliings. Any suggestions please?
 
River Klein
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@Dave Quinn

You should think in terms of spring. Just reproduce the environment your seeds like. Not all seeds germinate at the same temp, and even if they are supposed to, they can vary from a few days apart to a week apart when germinating. Some chili seeds take 4 - 6 weeks. Lots of people throw seeds out only to have them germinate in the garbage because they didn't have patience.

Anyway, if you are using rockwool, you have to adjust the pH. I always use http://thecloningstore.com/product/general-hydroponics-rapid-rooter-tray-50-cell-tray-plugs/ "Rapid Rooter"; however, I've used a damp paper towel to start seeds before and then carefully place them into the rooters, or whichever medium I was using... it works, you just have to be very careful not to damage that first tap root. You may also want to soak the seeds overnight in 'warm' water, but not too warm. Also, peppers like sandy soil so rockwool could be a good option, but, like I said, adjust the pH and the temps should be 70 to 85 degrees F.

I wouldn't necessarily spray them daily... it could cause some fungus or mold to grow. I just place a little vermiculite over the hole (or,in your case, a ripped piece of rockwool) and keep the very bottom of the medium in the water so it wicks up the moisture.

Anyway... good luck.

***I would also try to clone your best tomato plants and keep them all winter. As they get larger, or the mother plant gets larger, just take cuttings again and repeat the process. You could just keep the mother plant in 16 hr daylight from a week fluro, or led fixture and just continue to 'trim' until 6 weeks from your outdoor planting season then take your final cuttings, then clone. You would also plant the mother outside and watch how she grows . Not to mention you'd have a better harvest with your cloned plants. You can always visit my site, thecloningstore, or find info anywhere.

quote=Dave Quinn]Hydroponics double fail
My first try at hydroponics with grow lights was to start some seedlings in wool plugs so when it’s warm enough for greenhouse I’d have a head start.
I got a tray with 150 plugs and planted 100 chilli seeds and 20 tomato and 20 courgette seeds
I soaked the plugs with nutrient rich food as advised before planting and then sprayed daily with a fine mist of nutrient rich food..
I kept them indoors initially with led lights, but virtually no heat. The temperature never dropped below 8deg C.
I built my thermostatically controlled ‘room’ and checked temperature levels – this took me about a fortnight, by which time some of the tomato seeds had sprouted.
I moved the tray to the room and set temp to 25 deg C and the tomato seeds grew, but still no sign of life for the chilli seeds.
I then stupidly turned up the temperature to about 30 deg on the advice of a friend, still no chilli seeds, but some of the latest tomato seedlings wilted and died. Luckily I caught it before the stronger ones did.
Still no sign of the Chilli seedliings. Any suggestions please?
 
Alan Mikoleit
Posts: 106
Location: Sandpoint, Idaho
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I have started seeds and am now growing plants using W.M. T8 lights that are 6500K . I have 4 4ft fence post with 8 3"net pots in each tube. Its a top feed drip system on 50% eb and flood duty cycle. I will add a second level to it soon. I started the seed in rapid root plugs by soaking them overnight in NS. I put the in the net baskets surrounded by Hydroton. I let them sit in a covered tray of NS. For the chili person dont let the room temp go below 65F. I am using general hydroponics bio thrive. The seeds started coming up in just 4 days. Spinach, Kale, Swiss Chard, Basil , Oregano, I am now starting the next seeds right in my system. I will be selling theses systems soon.
 
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