The Orchid Forum, for the UK and Europe (previously known as The UK Orchid Forum) • View topic - Boosting sunlight with artificial light suggestions
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 13, 2014 11:15 am 
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I have a feeling that my orchid house is not quite bright enough. Can anyone give me a suggestion for some ceiling mounted lighting that would be bright enough to light a 9 sqm space?

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PostPosted: Sun Jul 13, 2014 8:04 pm 
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400W HPS sodium lighting, you can get bulbs with added blue light to avoid the leggy growth associated with reddish lighting. If its supplemental lighting rather than the only source then normal HPS bulbs will be fine too. The cost of running isnt as high as you might think either as the heat given off by the bulbs balances with any heating you might have.



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PostPosted: Wed Jul 16, 2014 9:51 am 
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Would LED flood lights be suitable at all. These ones use only 60w and give out 5500 lumens? If so what would be best the cool white or warm white? http://www.ledhut.co.uk/1-x-50-watt-led ... AuWD8P8HAQ

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PostPosted: Wed Jul 16, 2014 3:31 pm 
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I have decided that I will just light one end which is a bench 3m x 0.80m and the plants are 80cm from the ceiling so wonder if one of these would be better. Anyone tried them and would they cast enough light?
http://www.trilight.co.uk/light-fitting ... greenpower

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PostPosted: Wed Jul 16, 2014 10:40 pm 
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LEDs generally work ok, you will need at least 100W though, maybe 200W to be of any use. I used 70W for 1m2 and it was barely adequate.


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 17, 2014 10:42 am 
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I am looking at some 300W ones on alibaba (Which really only use 190W so they say) but it is all very confusing with ratios or red light to blue light etc. I am getting bogged down.

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PostPosted: Thu Jul 17, 2014 3:38 pm 
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Marco,

One set up I found excellent was to purchase a twin 4ft IP65 rated fitment that just plugged in. The tubes on advice wee originally developed for marine/aquatics fish tanks etc. The 2 tubes I fitted were from Zoo Med.

1. Zoo Med Flora Sun -
This high intensity lamp with peak emissions in the blue and red regions serves to maximize the photo biological processes in plants. The emission spectrum closely resembles the absorption curve of chlorophyll-A, promoting maximum photosynthesis, ideal for planted aquariums, or terrariums. Also great for shy fish species such as dwarf cichlids, discus, etc. Use in conjunction with Ultra Sun or Tropic Sun. Zoo Med's line of fluorescent aquarium lamps are made in Europe for ultra high quality, colour, and longer burn life. Our energy saving T-8 sizes/32 watts per tube.

2. Zoo Med Ultra or Tropic Sun
A 5500K bulb that is ideal for freshwater fish and live plants. The Tropic Sun is a full spectrum daylight lamp, which simulates natural sunlight for optimum aquarium viewing. Our Tropic Sun daylight bulb brings out the natural beauty of fish and plants and is our most economically priced bulb. Zoo Med's line of fluorescent aquarium lamps are made in Europe for ultra high quality, color, and longer burn life.

I found this combination works extremely well as they get the full spectrum, they are low wattage and virtually give off no heat. Some of my plants were within inches and no damage occurred. The amount of hours you wish to give is entirely up to you but you need to regularly observe the plants to gauge any benefits. If you are supplementing daylight hours, then you may only need them on for a few hours but should it be the main source of lighting. then 8-10 hours would be my starting point. It would be a good idea whichever route you decide to contact your electricity supplier, detail your equipment and possible usage and ask them to estimate costs. This may also help you in your decisions.

http://www.onlinereptileshop.co.uk/rept ... VPsB1.dpbs

http://www.onlinereptileshop.co.uk/rept ... uF7LF.dpbs

Hope this helps a little.

Gary


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 19, 2014 10:59 am 
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Thanks Gary very helpful

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PostPosted: Thu Aug 21, 2014 8:41 pm 
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So I eventually bought a couple of LED lights in the Red/Blue spectrum and thought I would post a picture of how the orchid house looks from 5-11pm. I am just supplementing the daylight they receive already and will probably increase the time the lights are on in Winter although I really have no idea how long for it is all experimental for me at the moment.


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PostPosted: Sun Nov 16, 2014 11:53 am 
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Marco wrote:
I am looking at some 300W ones on alibaba (Which really only use 190W so they say) but it is all very confusing with ratios or red light to blue light etc. I am getting bogged down.

I know what you mean about getting bogged down and went through the same when I was investigating lighting.

It's a bit like the watering, I thought water was just wet stuff but No, it involved ph, dh, siemen, alkalinity, acidity etc., etc., etc. and until I investigated lighting, I thought light was just bright stuff but No, it involved Lumens, watts, candles, red light, blue light, kelvin (who he?), T5's, T8's etc., etc., etc.,

I know you've made your choice now, but I've always settled for 250 watt metal hallides and they've always performed for me, flowering light-lovers like Vandas in a north-facing room very well with no problem.
I tried the sodium but hated the depressing, dingy colour, the metal hallide is a very pleasing white colour and like SilverShaded said, they also give out heat.

Looking at your set-up, I'm surprised you have much trouble as, apart from your back wall, there seems to be a helluva lot of window space including that great skylight.

Like the watering, I've learned not to let the lighting cause me sleepless nights, 8 hours 1 day, 12 the next, sometimes not turning it on at all and at the moment I have the following either just flowered, flowering or in bud:
aerangis citrata (4 spikes)
dendrobium victoria-reginae (bought last year and has been flowering for a surprisingly long time)
Ionopsis
Comparettia (original spike died but now that has put out a branch of a further 4 buds)
Restrepias cuprea & Ceylon Ruby
Paph bellatulum
Oncidium onustum (non-stop flowering!) & meirax
Stellis cilliare
but best of all, a baptistonia quite happy with it's one spike last year, had what I thought was 3 spikes developing now but have discovered a further 3 developing and all from just two growths.

So I wouldn't worry too much Marco, after all the Lumens, watts, candles, red light, blue light, kelvin, T5's, T8's etc., etc., etc.,, for me it just comes down to two things: strength of light ( I measure in candles, 2000 is a good average, mine are 4000) and colour spectrum (blue for me where there is ANY natural light including my north-facing room)

I would suggest you at least buy a light-meter so whatever lighting you get or how ever many lights you buy, you want to ensure they are at least doing their job and putting out a sufficient strength of light which is why we buy them in the first place.

Steve


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 17, 2014 9:49 am 
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Thanks Steve. I have got a light meter and I must say I am very pleased with the results of my new lights. I have loads flowering at the moment and plenty more spikes in the offing. I am not sure if it is entirely due to the new lights or just that i am getting general culture right. I quite like the way the OH lights up pink at night though I know it may not be to everyones taste. Maybe when these lights eventually die (they should last for many years) I will try the metal halides but I guess it will be a case of if it isn't broken don't fix it.

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 06, 2015 7:46 pm 
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Hi All,

Long time since I posted in the forum, seems someones been busy updating it lately.

Just wanted to follow on to this thread as I'm looking to add some light to my seedling /cutting bench, in the greenhouse, which is also being invaded by some phals that someone keeps buying !

I have a 70W metal halide lamp and two different tubes, details below, but wondered which one would be better suited to raising the young seedlings, veg and flowers, as well as the out of flower phals.

Not looking to having it running 12 hours a day, more as a top up during dull and shorter days to hopefully give stockier young plants.

Also a bit concerned that the 70 W MH amp might be too hot for the young plant even if mounted 2ft above them.

Wondered using a couple of 70W household halogen light bulbs 2700k would be a better option ?

Any input appreciated as all these lighting figures leave me a bit baffled.

thanks.



first chart is for a 14000k marine bulb
the second is for a Natural daylight bulb 4200k 6500lm
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 07, 2015 1:06 am 
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I know chilli growers who are using 10 w LED floodlights to good effect for seedlings and young plants. I might hook up a linked row of them.

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