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  #1  
Old 04-30-2020, 01:19 PM
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etcherkate etcherkate is offline
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Advice on grow light enclosure? Female
Default Advice on grow light enclosure?

Hi everyone,

I have a half dozen or so little 19 watt Feit grow lights hanging in my laundry room. Phals, slippers and a few other lower light orchids bloom regularly, but light loving orchids like cattleyas, angraecums and laelias have never rebloomed for me.

To expand my growing area and try to divide my plants according to light needs, I purchased a 1200 watt Exlenvce grow light. I totally underestimated how bright it would be and now feel like I am living on the red planet. No one in my household will tolerate the light and I can't blame them.

I wonder if anyone has suggestions for how I can dampen the light? Marijuana blogs are full of ideas, but I don't need to 100% block or control the light, I just need to take it down a few notches. I also want to make sure that I don't accidentally create a fire hazard.

Thanks in advance!
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Old 04-30-2020, 01:39 PM
penfold2 penfold2 is offline
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I would really recommend a white light fixture, especially if it's going to be used in a living area. Purple lights were popular when people believed that the red and blue spectra were more efficient for growing, but nowadays white leds are becoming more popular, since they are much more pleasing to work around, and have been found to have similar growing efficiency. Here's what I use. It's very bright, but the color is like sunlight, and it also has a screw adjustment for intensity.
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  #3  
Old 04-30-2020, 03:18 PM
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etcherkate etcherkate is offline
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Originally Posted by penfold2 View Post
I would really recommend a white light fixture, especially if it's going to be used in a living area. Purple lights were popular when people believed that the red and blue spectra were more efficient for growing, but nowadays white leds are becoming more popular, since they are much more pleasing to work around, and have been found to have similar growing efficiency. Here's what I use. It's very bright, but the color is like sunlight, and it also has a screw adjustment for intensity.
Hi Chris,

Thanks for the recommendation! One of my low wattage Feit lights is purple and doesn't bother me too much, but it's much less bright than the new one.

I'll think about which is the bigger hassle - returning the light and ordering a new one, or constructing some kind of light barrier. Or maybe I could simply rearrange the grow area so the brighter light is less within range of vision from other rooms in the house.
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Old 05-01-2020, 05:28 AM
KingKong KingKong is offline
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Sry this has made me chuckle a little.

1200w is some serious power. Thats the equivalent of roughly 5 x 400 watt hps fixtures. You could light an airport hangar with that.

I would seriously get a white light as has been mentioned. You will waste so much electricity using this red light which you could use to buy more orchids...

I don't know why your 19watt ones were not working.

I have one area here where I light 17 phalaenopsis using 16 watts of lighting, 11 of them are flowering or producing flower spikes so plenty to get them to flower and that works out at under 1 watt per plant..

Can I ask how far away from the plants you had your lights? The reason I ask this is cause light diminishes exponentially the further the distance so you don't need to necessarily invest in more power, it might be enough to just lower your current lights.

Last edited by KingKong; 05-01-2020 at 05:34 AM..
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Old 05-01-2020, 10:24 AM
penfold2 penfold2 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KingKong View Post
1200w is some serious power. Thats the equivalent of roughly 5 x 400 watt hps fixtures. You could light an airport hangar with that.
LED fixtures usually have drastically inflated power claims. They use the "equivalent" power rating (compared to HID lamps), or the potential output of the diodes. But in reality, they're being driven much lower than that. OP's fixture actually consumes 235w, not 1200. It's a really ridiculous and misleading practice, but once you know about it, you just look for the actual power consumption, which you can usually find in the small print. 235w is still a very bright light, but it's not equivalent to 1200w of anything, except maybe incandescent bulbs.
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Old 05-01-2020, 01:07 PM
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etcherkate etcherkate is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KingKong View Post
Sry this has made me chuckle a little.

1200w is some serious power. Thats the equivalent of roughly 5 x 400 watt hps fixtures. You could light an airport hangar with that.

I would seriously get a white light as has been mentioned. You will waste so much electricity using this red light which you could use to buy more orchids...

I don't know why your 19watt ones were not working.

I have one area here where I light 17 phalaenopsis using 16 watts of lighting, 11 of them are flowering or producing flower spikes so plenty to get them to flower and that works out at under 1 watt per plant..

Can I ask how far away from the plants you had your lights? The reason I ask this is cause light diminishes exponentially the further the distance so you don't need to necessarily invest in more power, it might be enough to just lower your current lights.
Hi KingKong,

Thanks for your feedback.
Nearly all of my phals and most of my paphs bloom reliably once a year, but some of the others (dendrobiums, laelia, cattleyas) never rebloom. All of the plants are between 4-10 inches from the lights.

If I decide to keep the red light, I'll follow the instructions and keep the plants significantly further away from it - I think they said either two or three feet.

Best,
Kate

---------- Post added at 10:07 AM ---------- Previous post was at 09:55 AM ----------

Quote:
Originally Posted by penfold2 View Post
LED fixtures usually have drastically inflated power claims. They use the "equivalent" power rating (compared to HID lamps), or the potential output of the diodes. But in reality, they're being driven much lower than that. OP's fixture actually consumes 235w, not 1200. It's a really ridiculous and misleading practice, but once you know about it, you just look for the actual power consumption, which you can usually find in the small print. 235w is still a very bright light, but it's not equivalent to 1200w of anything, except maybe incandescent bulbs.
Thanks for this -- I'll see if I can find the fine print somewhere with the wattage. 235 doesn't sound so bad - though it will raise my electricity costs somewhat.

I'm torn on returning the light to Amazon or not, as non essential items are shipping so slowly. Some of the space under the new light was intended for vegetable seedlings, and I don't want to get too late a start on the growing season. I would love to get everything ready to go in the ground before my newborn arrives in early June.

I may see if I can rig up a temporary solution to block the light using black trash bags and duct tape, until I can install proper curtains.
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