Relatively recently, I learned that for normal growth, shrinkage (and other plants in general) need light. No, well, of course, I knew that plants cannot live without light. On biology, photosynthesis, oxygen release, etc., were taking place there. But I just always thought that if you put the seedlings on the window sill (from the south or east side), there can be no lack of light. It turns out I was wrong. For a good sustainable growth, many plants need a lot of light. Surely, many people noticed that even simple and ubiquitous flowers like chlorophytum grow poorly in a dark room. If there is no light on the leaves, they often fade, brighten, and the contrast of the pattern is lost. All this is often imperceptible, but when it comes to growing seedlings, it already has weight. And the point is that plants require a certain length of daylight. Those. time from dawn to dusk. And at the end of winter and in early spring, when the day is even shorter than the night, we, plus everything, are visited by clouds obscuring the sunlight. As a result, grown seedlings are stretched (in search of light), fading, growing sick, and in general, slowly growing. If we talk about such a southern plant as grapes - he also likes long sunshine. All the same Summer Resident told that Edward Bartolomeich (of whom I spoke in this post) the grapes under a lamppost that illuminated the holiday village at night, ripened earlier, were sweeter and larger. That is, such a night extension of his life benefited him. Although I think that most plants still need a night rest and daylight should not exceed 12-14 hours. But if we talk about growing strawberry-strawberry seedlings (which I’m not going to write an article about), there’s a different story. Because it should be planted on seedlings already at the end of January, and due to the peculiarities of its germination, additional lighting is necessary for its full development. Strawberry seeds sprout only in the light for some reason, so on dark winter days, she needs her own individual sun. That's the creation of such a personal sun for the plants I started today. The thought about this warmed the soul for a long time, so everything managed to think through and pick up the necessary details. I'll start from the end - I got these 2 units (they are the same, just in different positions):
Structures for lighting seedlings
The design is a transformer of a wooden bar and a fluorescent lamp. My goal was to create such a unit, the position and distance from the surface of the table or window sill which could be changed. It also had to be compact and transportable. What I needed for the manufacture of one such design:
- 2 bars of meter length 2cm * 4cm;
- Screws long (6 cm) 2 pieces and short (3.5 cm) 4 pieces;
- Fluorescent lamp with lamp CAB31 (base G13) - 260 p;
- Wire with switch and plug 1m - 50r;
- Two hours of free time.
Why did I choose this particular lamp for seedlings? I read a lot of information about phytolamps, the absorption spectrum of light by plants, the dependence of photosynthesis on the frequency of light rays (roughly speaking their colors), etc. There is a common version that is most useful for plant growth in the orange-red light. Nevertheless, there is a mass of so-called "fitolamps" on sale, which shine in a slightly pinkish color. Phytolamp is the same fluorescent lamp (or gas discharge), which emits light in a certain range, supposedly pleasant for plants. Sometimes this is achieved by applying a special layer to the lamp, and sometimes using some special gas. The stores have both fluorescent long lamps, and "pear" phytolamps like ordinary incandescent lamps. They cost about one and a half to two times more expensive than normal. Honestly, after reading all the information about fitolamps and various reviews on the forums, it can be said that the effect of ordinary lamps is similar or better for plants than the fitolamps. This is all because fotolamps are only trying to block the light of other spectra, and only allow it to pass in the correct range. For what? Well, probably, so that it is not too bright from these lamps and that the human eye does not get tired. But in reality, a person is much more pleasant with warm (yellow) light, and pink seems to be even annoying. This is not to mention the fact that fluorescent lamps sometimes have a low frequency and even by the eye you can notice an unpleasant flickering or blinking. But I must say that with modern lamps this is better than, say, a lamp bought 10 years ago. So, I chose such a lamp because it will be possible to insert a fitolamp for 240 rubles instead of the usual one that came with it a little later (when needed). I bought two pieces, because I am going to grow not only standard peppers and tomatoes on seedlings this year, but also strawberries and strawberries, for which illumination is most needed. Each bulb has a power of 18 W, which in general will not save on such a backlight =). The length of the bulb is about 60 cm. It was sold together with the canopy for 260 rubles.
Lamps for seedlings turned off
Now about the design. The lamp is fixed on a bar 75 cm long. From the sides, six more segments of a bar 20 cm long each are screwed onto the screws, which ensure the transformability and transportability of the structure. From the photo, in principle, it should be clear what and how, but I’ll say right away that in the lower fixture, where three segments of 20 cm (legs) are fastened together, it is better to use a bolt with a nut, since on the screw does not hold very well, especially surely loosen after a couple of turns)
Luminaire in high position
The distance between the backlight lamp and the seedlings should be about 10 cm. I did the trasformer because the seedlings tend to grow. The maximum height of my unit is 35 cm, but you can always put books on it) Generally speaking, if there is such lighting, the seedlings should not be pulled out, so I think it should be enough before the onset of sunny days.
It would be necessary to supplement the design with a light-reflector, in the role of which foil is suitable for baking. I haven’t decided how I’ll adapt it, but as soon as I’m done, I’ll add another photo here)
A battery of two lamps over strawberries
By the way, soon the New Year and it's time to buy gifts! =) The dream of any kid (and sometimes girls) is a radio-controlled model. And the age of the boy can be from 3 years old and up to old age! I, for example, at my 22, would have liked a big radio-controlled car, because in my childhood there were, but then I quickly broke them, then the batteries quickly ended quickly.