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-   -   Clip on growing lights (https://www.orchidboard.com/community/growing-under-lights/107407-clip-growing-lights.html)

avian 07-27-2021 06:53 PM

Clip on growing lights
Looking for clip on growing lights that will be adequate enough for my Cattleyas. Was trying to find rechargeable/battery operated ones but mainly finding plug in ones.
Need to attach to this cart:
DRAGGAN Cart, silver color, 16x12 5/8x29 3/8" - IKEA

Only have cats on the top two shelves although might move the ones on the 2nd to the bottom shelf. Other cats are on a windowsill or in another area in the house that gets more light.

Would appreciate some recommendations. Thanks.

Shadeflower 07-27-2021 07:27 PM

Orchid Hobbyist gets recommended a lot, they have low light , medium and high light units.

ah i see the smallest size they do is 24 inches - your trolley is only 16 inches wide. I think they might be a bit big unless you hang one above the trolley..

I personally think the trolley is the biggest issue. It has solid dividers that let no light through and each level is very low for plants. Once you factor in the pot height, the plant height, the flowering height needed and the clearance so the lights don't burn the leaves you might find that that trolley is just too low for each shelf.

avian 07-27-2021 08:03 PM

The shelves can be lifted off and not used so, if I chose to, I can remove the middle shelf and then just have plants on the top and bottom. I wanted rolling carts so I can move the plants outside for a while when weather permits. Also I don't have a huge space so this size was the best option. The cats are minis and compacts.

Shadeflower 07-28-2021 06:19 AM

yeah that sounds like a really good plan.

So if I was you I would get the smallest led from the orchid hobbyist to hang over it and then get something smaller for additional undershelf lighting like this one which is my go to light:


I use the 11 watt for my highest light orchids so don't be fooled by their low wattage. For your lower shelf I would not get stronger than the 7 watt led.

this might come in handy too:

and I use these occasionally too: https://www.amazon.com/DiCUNO-Extend...07P42F4PK&th=1

DeaC 07-28-2021 12:04 PM

Got 2-24'' clip-on lights last yr. and very happy with them. Found on ebay from georgetown trading co. and product seems to go by the name Orchid Hobbyist. At the time they only had 24'' but I have them attached to those curtain tension rods hung over orchids and any higher light plants benefit greatly.

avian 07-28-2021 06:39 PM

Unfortunately I can't hang a light over the cart. The cart is in the dining room area which has cathedral ceilings. I was considering trying something like this:
Not necessarily this one but something similar.
I don't have space to move the orchids elsewhere.
I was checking out the "portable" greenhouses but according to most reviews they don't stand up well to the wind and it can get very windy here.

Shadeflower 07-28-2021 06:46 PM

those lights are only suited for seedlings. Consider that that light you just linked is powered by a usb plug.
If you know anything about usb plugs you will know they are used to charge phones which used to draw 5 volts at 1 amp to give you a 5 watt charging capacity.
Newer usb plugs these days can have an output of 3 amps which at 5 volts would be 15 watts but I can tell you from experience those lights don't draw any more than 6-8 watts.
So assuming it is 8 watts spread over 4 lighting bars that is 2 watts per bar. Each bar has about 20 led's on them so each led bulb will be powered by 0.1 watts. I can tell you that is just enough to keep seedlings alive.
Not to mention that they are red+blue light units, they might look like a christmas tree on the picture but in real life they are horrible to look at giving off a pinkish glow.
Please be aware that there are a lot and I mean a lot of rubbish lights out there. I have given you some good options that will give you clean white light with optimal growth saving you the hassle of trying out several different ones but there are thousands of lights to pick from so whichever you think will do - by all means. Don't just get the cheapest one though, you usually end up having to buy twice.

avian 07-28-2021 06:55 PM

Shouldn't have linked to that one but was referring to the style; floor model with adjustable goosenecks so can position the lights. Trying to find one that would have adequate lighting.
What is the minimum wattage or lux that you would recommend? The 24" Orchid Hobbyist LED strips are 9-10 watts.

This one?: Amazon.com

Shadeflower 07-28-2021 07:12 PM

1 Attachment(s)
ok, ps I was just trying to show my dislike for that lighting unit. That light practically gives me nightmares lol.

So one thing you need to consider is the length and how many led bulbs the unit has.

So the orchid hobbyist bar is 24" long and uses about 9 watts.

The aquarium led I linked if you were to get the 9 watt the light is only 4 inches long. So it might also use 9 watts like the hobbyist light but it is much much more concentrated on a 4 inch bar vs a 24 inch bar. Do you see the difference?
The hobbyist bar can illuminate a much greater area but at 9 watts for such a large area it is classed as their weakest light.

When I was talking about the aqarium lights I menioned I wouldn't go as high as the 9 watt because of how small the unit is and how concentrated the light is in comparison so although it lights a much smaller area it is a lot more powerful because of it so I would recommend the 7 watt. You could get two of them, or get one 7 watt and a 9 watt to hang above, that way you can find the right distance you want. The closer a light is placed to the plant the stronger the light the plant receives so you need to use the numbers as a guide but know that 9 watts on a 24" bar is a lot more spread out than 9 watts on a 4" bulb. I can't tell you how much lux it will give off, that just depends how far away you hang the light but those aquarium lights I linked are powerful.

9watts would completely light up one level (roughly 16"x16") and be strong enough for any really high light plants like cattley'a or vanda's. 7 watts for medium plants and 5 watts for low light plants.

Hope that helps.

PS: I have added a picture of that new light you have linked and I have tested it for a few months - you might not be able to see on the picture too well the difference in light strength but the usb powered bars just aren't as powerful and they seem to use as much power so I have actually tried them and my verict are that they are good for lighting, not much good for growing stuff with.

Shadeflower 07-28-2021 07:50 PM

This is a review I have quoted from amazon which I feel described the unit best:


The only thing this light illuminates is my regret. I thought I’d researched this well enough but apparently not. I was swayed by the positive feedback, likely left by folks with just a houseplant or two that needed perking up.

I bought this for my seed starting, as my house gets very little good natural light. Buyers should know these are very small light fixtures. Maybe 11-12 inches in length and a mere 3/8 to 1/2 inch in width. And I can’t see how it is 5000 lumens. If it’s a combined 5k with both bulbs, then the separate gooseneck feature is useless as both need to be in the same area to take care of your plants adequately. I can fit maybe three small 3” pots under both lights. If you’re looking to start more than three plants, you’ll need more lights. And at $20 per lap, that’ll add up and require more outlets.

And to add injury to insult, the clamp needs at least two hands to use. At least it is strong?

To sum up: a slim and delicate “pretty” light fixture probably adequate (or not) for 1-2 established/adult house plants with supplemental lighting.

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