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Light Spectrum's Effects on Plants -- Part II

By drdawg
February 23, 2015

Previously I wrote about light spectrum ranges and how those ranges affect plants. This light range is measured in nanometers, or what's called Kelvin (the K number is printed on fluorescent tubes/bulbs). What is also important is the light intensity. If the light intensity is not great enough, it really won't matter much what the Kelvin number is. Light intensity is measured in lumens.

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Name: Caroline Scott
Calgary (Zone 4a)
Charter ATP Member Region: Canadian Bulbs Winter Sowing Enjoys or suffers cold winters Lilies
Peonies Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Garden Ideas: Master Level
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CarolineScott
Feb 22, 2015 6:30 PM CST
What happened to foot candles???
--Just teasing!

Last year I switched from T12 to T8 and not the T5 because they were so expensive.
But even with the step up from T12 to T8 , I noticed more heat effects on seedlings.
Name: Ken Ramsey
Starkville, MS (Zone 8a)
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]
Orchids Greenhouse Vegetable Grower Ferns Region: United States of America Hummingbirder
Composter Bromeliad Master Gardener: Mississippi Cat Lover Tropicals Plumerias
Image
drdawg
Feb 22, 2015 8:56 PM CST
Thanks, Caroline. Foot candles are still there, but the lumens are what folks in America see when they purchase there bulbs.

IF you think your T8 bulbs are hot, find someone who uses T5's. They'll burn your fingers!
drdawg (Ken Ramsey) - Tropical Plants & More
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]www.tropicalplantsandmore.com[/url]
If God wanted me to touch my toes, he would have put them on my knees.
central Illinois
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Hosted a Not-A-Raffle-Raffle Plant Database Moderator Garden Ideas: Level 2 Photo Contest Winner: 2014
Avid Green Pages Reviewer Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier
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jmorth
Feb 22, 2015 11:12 PM CST
Nice breakdown of technicalities.
I use a bank of 4 double tubes of fluorescent grow lights and cool whites in the basement to overwinter tropicals, winter blooming bulbs, and annuals like coleus to make starts for the next season.
Thumb of 2015-02-23/jmorth/7edb2b

Nothing that's been done can ever be changed.
Name: Vickie
Elberfeld, Indiana, USA (Zone 6b)
Bee Lover Garden Photography Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Daylilies Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Region: United States of America
Region: Indiana Garden Art Annuals Clematis Cottage Gardener Garden Ideas: Level 2
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blue23rose
Feb 23, 2015 5:44 AM CST
Interesting read Thumbs up I don't do a lot of indoor growing, but this info is good to know in case I ever do Thumbs up
Vickie
May all your weeds be wildflowers. ~Author Unknown
Name: Ken Ramsey
Starkville, MS (Zone 8a)
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]
Orchids Greenhouse Vegetable Grower Ferns Region: United States of America Hummingbirder
Composter Bromeliad Master Gardener: Mississippi Cat Lover Tropicals Plumerias
Image
drdawg
Feb 23, 2015 7:12 AM CST
I tip my hat to you. jmorth and Vickie
drdawg (Ken Ramsey) - Tropical Plants & More
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]www.tropicalplantsandmore.com[/url]
If God wanted me to touch my toes, he would have put them on my knees.
Name: Rick Corey
Everett WA 98204 (Zone 8a)
Sunset Zone 5. Koppen Csb. Eco 2f
I helped beta test the first seed swap Plant and/or Seed Trader Seed Starter Region: Pacific Northwest Photo Contest Winner: 2014 Vegetable Grower
Avid Green Pages Reviewer Garden Ideas: Master Level Garden Sages I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! I helped plan and beta test the plant database. Charter ATP Member
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RickCorey
Feb 23, 2015 12:46 PM CST
Thanks, Ken! Well said.
Name: Deborah Pryor
Orangeburg, SC Zone 8a (Zone 8a)
Don't Sweat the Small Stuff!
Charter ATP Member Amaryllis Region: United States of America Tropicals Seed Starter Plumerias
Plant and/or Seed Trader Peonies Lilies Irises Hummingbirder Echinacea
Deebie
Feb 23, 2015 3:20 PM CST
Great article, Ken. Thumbs up Now I'm better informed and can work toward an efficient indoor light set up for my plants.
Name: Ken Ramsey
Starkville, MS (Zone 8a)
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]
Orchids Greenhouse Vegetable Grower Ferns Region: United States of America Hummingbirder
Composter Bromeliad Master Gardener: Mississippi Cat Lover Tropicals Plumerias
Image
drdawg
Feb 23, 2015 4:46 PM CST
I tip my hat to you. Thumbs up
drdawg (Ken Ramsey) - Tropical Plants & More
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]www.tropicalplantsandmore.com[/url]
If God wanted me to touch my toes, he would have put them on my knees.
Name: Elfrieda
Indian Harbour Beach, Florida (Zone 10a)
Enjoys or suffers hot summers Dog Lover Hibiscus Sempervivums Sedums Dragonflies
Herbs Roses Foliage Fan Annuals Cut Flowers Ferns
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orchidgal
Feb 23, 2015 9:55 PM CST
Good article; but I doubt whether I will have a need for lights to grow plants in the house, If I had a basement, like I had in New Jersey, I would be tempted to start all my seeds that way. As it is, I get all the sun, warmth I need - and sometimes too much of it. Smiling
“I was just sittin’ here enjoyin’ the company. Plants got a lot to say, if you take the time to listen”
Eeyore
Name: Ken Ramsey
Starkville, MS (Zone 8a)
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]
Orchids Greenhouse Vegetable Grower Ferns Region: United States of America Hummingbirder
Composter Bromeliad Master Gardener: Mississippi Cat Lover Tropicals Plumerias
Image
drdawg
Feb 24, 2015 7:06 AM CST
You are among those lucky ones, Elfie, who lives in a sub-tropical area. The vast majority of us do not. For many of us, supplemental lighting is not only an aid in our growing tropical plants, but a necessity.
drdawg (Ken Ramsey) - Tropical Plants & More
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]www.tropicalplantsandmore.com[/url]
If God wanted me to touch my toes, he would have put them on my knees.
Name: Vickie
Elberfeld, Indiana, USA (Zone 6b)
Bee Lover Garden Photography Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Daylilies Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Region: United States of America
Region: Indiana Garden Art Annuals Clematis Cottage Gardener Garden Ideas: Level 2
Image
blue23rose
Feb 24, 2015 12:32 PM CST
I have one grow light on my daylily seedlings now. I got it from my mom and have no idea what lumens it is. I just know that I really think it is what kept my seedlings going this winter. Now if I can just get through another 8 weeks and not overwater them!
Vickie
May all your weeds be wildflowers. ~Author Unknown
Name: Ken Ramsey
Starkville, MS (Zone 8a)
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]
Orchids Greenhouse Vegetable Grower Ferns Region: United States of America Hummingbirder
Composter Bromeliad Master Gardener: Mississippi Cat Lover Tropicals Plumerias
Image
drdawg
Feb 24, 2015 1:19 PM CST
Often/usually the bulb with have the Lumens and the Kelvin printed on it.
drdawg (Ken Ramsey) - Tropical Plants & More
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]www.tropicalplantsandmore.com[/url]
If God wanted me to touch my toes, he would have put them on my knees.
Name: Audrey
Central Texas (Zone 8a)
Organic Gardener Keeper of Poultry Keeps Horses Butterflies Photo Contest Winner: 2015
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Esperanza
Feb 24, 2015 1:52 PM CST
Lighting for plants has always made my head spin. I never did get the candle number thing. Who lights up a thousand candles? Hilarious! Talking about it the way it is packaged with Lumens makes much more sense to me. Thank you for breaking it down Thumbs up
Name: Ken Ramsey
Starkville, MS (Zone 8a)
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]
Orchids Greenhouse Vegetable Grower Ferns Region: United States of America Hummingbirder
Composter Bromeliad Master Gardener: Mississippi Cat Lover Tropicals Plumerias
Image
drdawg
Feb 24, 2015 3:12 PM CST
I tip my hat to you. Thank You!
drdawg (Ken Ramsey) - Tropical Plants & More
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]www.tropicalplantsandmore.com[/url]
If God wanted me to touch my toes, he would have put them on my knees.

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