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Too little of a good thing?

This is a discussion on Too little of a good thing? within the General Orchid Culture forums, part of the Orchid Culture category; So... I'm curious as to whether others are freaking out as I am at this ...

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  1. #1
    Heather is offline Banned
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    Default Too little of a good thing?

    So... I'm curious as to whether others are freaking out as I am at this time of the year. Every day I watch the weather. Every day I watch to see if the sun rises and sets. Last Monday I was home and it was sunny, but cleaning/watering day, so the plants weren't in the sun so much as they should have been. Same thing yesterday, except that I don't think they saw the sun in between the two days! Today, thankfully was sunny again. I find myself wishing for big snowfall in hopes of reflection after the storm.

    I'm curious as to how many of you bit the bullet and bought some serious lighting at this time of year, and how many have held out and resisted the urge. Why, and how are your plants doing/flowering? If you use lights, did you find it helpful? Vice-versa?

    For those of you who did buy lights, was it during the dark winter weather? How many days into winter did it take for *you* to break down? Oh wait, it is only Dec. 13th! Not even winter yet!?!? I'm breaking down in a serious way...poor plants! I feel so bad for them!

  2. #2
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    uncasteeb is offline Senior Member
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    I realised i would need additional lighting to keep my 'chids happy in the Winter when i first started & budgeted for a growroom.
    It is approx 6 foot by 6 foot.The window has been boardered over to keep the heat in .Walls are covered in Mylar .A heater & a hot water humidifier are in place.
    Temps are roughly 60f @ night & 75f during the day.Light is 400w HPS(Son T Agro) , the plants recieve between 4000fc to about 1000 fc @ the edges of the benches(the light is on for 12 1/2 hrs dayly).the reflector was designed by the Dutch for maximum efficiency.
    http://www.talbot-terry.freeserve.co.uk/Orchids/GR1.jpg
    Note Phragenstein,s spike is now over 62" high

  3. #3
    LJA's Avatar
    LJA
    LJA is offline OrchidTalk Tech Admin
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    re: Phragenstein's spike:

  4. #4
    Heather is offline Banned
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    Quote Originally Posted by lja
    re: Phragenstein's spike:
    Damn, I top in at 64"....I hate being shorter than my plants.

    H<----stomps foot. Wah.

    Nice growing, btw - note to self, get damn lights! LOL!!!

  5. #5
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    peteMc is offline innocent bystander
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    I share these concerns about light - and temperature, too - but there's little I can do. The landlord pays the electric bill in this artist loft building, and watches very closely what's being used. We, however, pay the heat - gas/ hot water - and it was big progress to get some insulation on the walls not long ago.

    I've put 'natural light' bulbs in the fixtures, keep pans of water on the radiators, run a 'Vornado' humidifier and warm mist humidifier too (both near/under the plants) , button the place up as best i can and hope for the best.

    This morning it was 16 when I got up.(uh, outside - a toasty 60 inside )

    On the other hand, days will begin to get longer next week.

    p

  6. #6
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    I panicked one day in September, when my high/low thermometer said it had been 43 the night before (a very unseasonal and unexpected dip), and raced out to buy a new shelving unit at HD. I moved the orchids (45+ of them) inside each evening and out each morning to the shade porch but it was a big pain. Finally, about a month ago, I got around to hanging lights on the shelves. I went lo-tech: I have two 2-tube 40 watt flourescents per shelf, and I'm using Philips Natural Sunlight bulbs. Everything is doing very well, with new growth and spikes. I can't wait until I can move everything back outside, but I'm so impressed with how well they're doing under the lights that I just might keep it set up and fill it with seedlings and compots... what's that thing about never being too thin, too rich, or having too many orchids?
    Liz

  7. #7
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    LJA
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    That last bit about too many orchids I seem to have licked: it's those first two items that are giving me issues....

    We pull the shade cloth off the greenhouse around mid november, and put it on again around mid march, otherwise, with the winter sun as low as it is in the sky, the plants would get light-starved. Even so, I still get antsy for the catts and phrags if we have day after day after day of cloudy weatther. In the big scheme of things, I know I shouldn't get concerned, but I still do!

  8. #8
    Heather is offline Banned
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    Thanks everyone! I appreciate it and feel at least a little bit better. I still want lights. I can't have HPS in this house, and I don't want flourescents, I just don't think they'd work well for what I grow. I did ask for gift certificates to a hydroponics store though, so I'm hoping, if we move in March when the lease is up, we'll move to a place w/ 2 extra rooms, one for the plants and one for the boxes of junk and extra computers - apparently, that's the only room in the current house I've not overtaken (though, there are about 23 plants in there!LOL!) and that's as far as it goes. Bah Humbug!

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