Ask a Question forum: Plant Lights?

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Name: Zack
Upstate NY (Zone 5b)
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TheWitchBoy
Nov 7, 2017 8:41 PM CST
I'm looking for plant lights (or just bulbs) that are effective, both in performance and cost. I'd like to be able to just hop over to the local Walmart or Lowes, but I'd also like to know what kinds of things I should be looking for in a plant light.

One of the reasons I want a plant light is because I want to try to grow my second generation tomato plant indoors, over the course of winter (instead of taking and propagating cuttings over and over until winter is over).

Another reason I want a plant light is for my hoard of spiderplants, young and mature, who will be getting less light (especially the north window spiderplants?).

Does anyone havee types or brands of plant light that they prefer?
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Name: Daisy I
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
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DaisyI
Nov 8, 2017 11:07 AM CST
The cheapest bulbs that will provide the most light are CFL's. Read the small print on the package to find lights with 6000k - 6500k. They are usually labeled "daylight" or "grow light". If you are going for tube lights, a cheap shop fixture will work perfectly. The bulbs will be either T8 or T5, the T5 are more expensive but also more efficient (they give off less heat). Make sure you get the right fixture for the bulb size.

The brand is not important but this is what you are looking for:

https://www.walmart.com/ip/Ge-...
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Name: Karen
NM (Zone 7b)
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plantmanager
Nov 8, 2017 11:15 AM CST
I have a more expensive type of light, but have been very happy with it and their grow tents. My plants have really responded well to these lights.
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Name: Mac
Soon to be MidCoast, ME (Zone 6a)
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McCannon
Nov 9, 2017 8:08 AM CST
If you have room for 4' fixtures, I recommend these from Home Depot: $17 ea. - https://www.homedepot.com/p/Co...

and these lamps: $25.50 10-pack - https://www.homedepot.com/p/Ph...

You can buy the lamps individually, but we have several fixtures so we buy them by the case. We use them as grow lights when we start plants from seed in the spring and as sustain lighting for overwintering plants indoors.
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Name: Will Creed
NYC
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WillC
Nov 9, 2017 8:16 PM CST
I may be wrong, but I don't think that standard inexpensive plant lights will be sufficient for tomatoes. On the other hand, Spider Plants should be okay in a north window in upstate NY in winter as long as the window is completely uncovered. Of course, fluorescent lights will benefit them but are not essential.
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Name: Daisy I
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
Not all who wander are lost
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DaisyI
Nov 9, 2017 8:24 PM CST
The cfl's have to be rated to 6500k. Lumens can be regulated by raising or lowering the cfl's.
Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and proclaiming...."WOW What a Ride!!" -Mark Frost

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