Jan 12, 15
The decision has been made: You want to grow something with this great system you’ve heard about called hydroponics. Maybe you’ve already decided what type of system you like, or maybe you aren’t sure where to start. For either case, you’ll need to decide on what kind of growing medium you want to try. Hydroponics systems don’t use soil, which opens up an entirely new world of grow media for you to choose from.
So what is a growing medium? Aside from an adolescent psychic, growing mediums are the soil substitutes used in hydroponics, such as soilless potting mix, perlite, or coco coir, that support your root system and retain nutrients. Each type has different properties but the most important characteristics to consider are water retention, aeration, and pH neutrality. There’s an overwhelming number of medium types and recipe mixes, so let’s go over the most popular media.
Mar 15, 13
In part one, we discussed the different types of lights and their respective coverage. In this part, we’ll look at the different types of fixtures more closely, helping you choose the right reflector for your growing needs.
Once you’ve chosen your bulbs, you have to choose a fixture to give you maximum reflectivity and coverage. There are about four types of grow light fixtures to choose from: high bays, strips, open air HID, and enclosed HID.
Imagine lighting fixtures in a warehouse. The high bays used for indoor growing are just modified versions of those warehouse fixtures and come in HID, CFL, and linear fluorescent versions. The HID and CFL high bays are great for starter grows, and are only suitable for growing a few plants due to small coverage areas. On the other hand, linear fluorescent high bays are an ideal choice for T5 fluorescent grow lights, as they have larger coverage areas and operate two to eight individual bulbs.
Linear fluorescent strips are only suitable for growing compact rows of vegetables or herbs, as they only operate one or two lamps.
Open Air HID
These types of fixtures are the most common type of grow light because they produce high lumens, have great coverage, and provide sufficient cooling. Open air HIDs include wing fixtures and parabolic fixtures.
Similar to open air HID fixtures, enclosed HID fixtures include air cooled and “cool tube” fixtures. However, these types of HID fixtures offer two distinct advantages over the open air HID fixtures. One, the bulb is protected by a tempered glass lens, which protects your plants and grow area from glass in the event of a bulb malfunction or thermal shock from overspray of water or other liquids. Two, the fixture offers better cooling. Both types of the enclosed fixtures feature flanges on either end for external cooling, allowing you to send a constant stream of air past the bulbs, therefore keeping both the bulb and your plants at a safe temperature.
Types of Timers
Now that we’ve covered the types of grow light fixtures, we’ll discuss the different types of timers and their importance in your grow project.
Just like you and me, plants require sleep. Generally, plants need 15 to 18 hours of light a day during the growth phase and 10 to 12 hours of light during the flowering stage. For the remainder of the time, your lights should be off. You can accomplish your plants’ lighting needs in a few ways: by manually turning your lights on and off (not really recommended) or by utilizing a simple plug-in timer. Manually turning your lights on and off isn’t recommended for one reason: you may forget to turn them on, or you may forget to turn them off, both being detrimental to your plants’ health. The answer to you plants’ lighting needs is a plug-in timer, offered either in digital or analog format.
Analog timers are generally cheaper and somewhat easier to use than digital timers. These types of timers have a dial that turns throughout a 24-hour cycle and trippers that turn the lights on and off. You place one tripper at the time you want your lights on, and another when you want your lights off. When the timer hits these trippers, the lights either turn on or off. However, most types of analog timers lose time when there is a power outage.
Digital timers are definitely the recommended type of timer for your grow light project. These timers work pretty much the same way as analog timers, but offer a few key advantages over the analog timers. For one, they solve the problem of losing time when there is a power outage. These timers have battery backups that remember the time and set points should there be a power outage. Additionally, many of these timers are self-adjusting, resetting themselves for daylight savings time and even calculating sunrise and sunset times based on the time of year.
How’s your grow project coming along? Tell us in the comments below or leave us a note on Facebook, Twitter, or Google Plus!
Dec 31, 12
At 1000Bulbs.com, we strive to bring you the most innovative products at affordable prices. For this week’s volume of Enlightenment, we’re introducing some unique, modern lighting products that are efficient, energy-saving, and easy on your wallet, so sit back, relax, and be enlightened.
Archipelago LED Bulbs
Ranging from 3 to 4.5 watts, Archipelago LED bulbs come either as a decorative globe or torpedo. With a life expectancy of 50,000 hours, these dazzling bulbs are the perfect replacement for a 25-watt incandescent and are great for indoor and outdoor use. The decorative globes are exquisite in a bathroom vanity, as well as patio lighting, and the torpedo bulbs are dashing in wall lighting and chandeliers, along with any enclosed outdoor fixtures. These CSA listed lamps do not contain mercury or lead, and come with a five year warranty. Browse through the Archipelago LED bulbs and see what style suits your home decor.
Silicone Tip Lamp
Want a more flame-like look for your chandelier? This 6-watt silicone tip lamp is excellent for the task. It has a frosted finish that gives off a tranquil glow, bringing a warm atmosphere to any room. The incandescent lamp has a candelabra base and has a rated life of 1,500 hours. Enjoy the beauty of this distinguishing bulb in your chandelier; take some time to see if the silicone tip lamp is right for you!
12 Volt Tape Light
A few months ago, we introduced our 24-volt LED tape light, a cutting-edge technology that was a fun and flexible twist on rope light. For more variety, we have added the new, energy-saving Flextec 12-volt LED tape light. With an adhesive backing, it is easy to install and can be placed anywhere. The LED tape light comes in a variety of lengths and colors, as well as different versions including standard output, high output, and color changing. Using less than 2 watts per foot, the standard output tape light is best for accent lighting applications. The high output solid color version uses more power, allowing for extra brightness in indoor and outdoor locations needing brighter task lighting. The color changing tape light has red, green, and blue lights to mix and match colors, and patterns, using the RGB controller. Whether you are lighting a desk or a room, LED tape light is a fun, unique way to light up any area.
Grow Lights and Horticulture Supplies
Volume 2 of Enlightenment covered a variety of horticulture nutrients and supplements. If those were not enough, we now feature everything you need for your indoor garden. From lighting to grow media to starter kits, we have it all. Your indoor garden will be completely nourished, perfectly lit, and housed properly for beautiful, luscious plants. Don’t let inclement weather keep you from growing the plants you love; be sure to view our assortment of grow lights and horticulture supplies today!
Dec 17, 12
In volume 2 of Enlightenment, we will discuss a variety of new, and diverse, items added to our site, from contemporary antique light bulbs to hydroponic horticulture nutrients. With an assortment of products such as these, you won’t be disappointed with this article, so sit back, relax, and be enlightened.
Light your home Edison style! These unique, tubular antique light bulbs are the perfect way to give your home a vintage look. Beautiful for interior and exterior lighting, the spiral tungsten filament of the bulbs creates a warm amber glow that sets a welcoming and peaceful ambiance in any room. With a candelabra base, they are perfect for chandeliers, pendant lighting, and more. Give your home an antique feel; shop our selection of antique light bulbs!
Leviton Combination USB/Receptacle Charger
Leviton’s new combination USB and receptacle chargers can charge two electronic mobile devices synchronously via the USB ports, while leaving the receptacle free for any other power needs. The USB receptacle is perfect for use in residential spaces such as kitchens and home offices, as well as light commercial spaces such as airport cafes and office cubicles. Pair it with the USB receptacle with the Leviton Mobile Device Station for added convenience. Visit our site to see if the Leviton combination USB and receptacle charger is right for you!
LEDnovation GEN2 EnhanceLite A19
The LEDnovation GEN2 EnhanceLite A19 omnidirectional bulb is perfect for any multi-purpose lighting needs. Considered as one of the world’s most efficient LED light bulbs, this dimmable, warm white bulb uses only 13.7 watts and is the perfect replacement for a 75 watt incandescent. It has a color rendering index of 90 and does not contain mercury or lead. This LED bulb has a life expectancy of 50,000 hours and comes with a five-year warranty. Check out the EnhanceLite A19 and see if it suits your lighting needs!
RAB Slim Wall Packs
The new RAB LED slim wall packs are sleek and elegant, perfect for any indoor or outdoor lighting decor. Functional as a downlight or uplight, the wall packs come in a variety of wattages, with either a bronze or white finish; you choose the one best suited to your needs. They are UL listed for wet locations, IDA Dark Sky approved, and include a five-year warranty. Give any location that crisp, clean fixture it needs; browse our assortment of RAB LED slim wall packs!
Horticulture Nutrients & Supplements
In Enlightenment: Vol. 1, we mentioned that grow lights were new to our site. Now, we have added horticulture nutrients and supplements. The Bloom Blaster by Grotek is a hydroponic plant nutrient powder that helps plants mature properly. Effective in all growing media, it helps your plants to develop beautifully. Mighty Wash by NPK Industries aids to rid your plants of insects and spider mites and can be used in all stages of the flowering cycle. FloraBloom by General Hydroponics functions as a bloom development stimulator to improve the quality of plants during the flowering stage. See your plants grow to new heights with our new horticulture nutrients and supplements!