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Author Topic: Indoor citrus/fruit tree grow lights?  (Read 1283 times)

Empoweredandfree

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Indoor citrus/fruit tree grow lights?
« on: September 27, 2018, 03:18:15 AM »
Can anyone reccommend indoor grow lights for citrus or a setup that will enable me to hang a light over the trees? I was thinking of using T-5s but I'm not looking to have an enourmous electric bill...

DaytimeLobster

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Re: Indoor citrus/fruit tree grow lights?
« Reply #1 on: September 27, 2018, 10:17:51 AM »
I used a "1500 watt equivalent" LED grow light last winter, hung about 3' above my trees and they did OK and put on a little growth. I think they would have done much better had I been able to keep the soil temps higher.

If you don't mind the pink/purple light most of these LED's emit I would go with them as they are very energy efficient compared to HID lighting like metal halide or high pressure sodium and much cooler in operation.

The HID types of lights get super hot in their operation but are probably a little bit cheaper (cost of the system, they are much less efficient on power usage) than LED's.
The light they emit penetrates much better than LED too, however the light produced by HID systems is not 'honed in' on the spectrum of light that plants use for photosynthesis like the LED's are.
Metal halides give off a more blue-white hue and high pressure sodium systems give off a red-orange hue, these are the types of lights traditionally used in street lights.

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Re: Indoor citrus/fruit tree grow lights?
« Reply #2 on: September 27, 2018, 12:19:19 PM »
Lights that run hot I would probably avoid.  Which LED in particular did you buy?

brian

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Re: Indoor citrus/fruit tree grow lights?
« Reply #3 on: September 27, 2018, 01:27:47 PM »
how big are your trees?  There was a guy on another forum who would constantly post pictures of his setup:  two 5gal home depot buckets lined with tinfoil and a light bulb on top, in a clamshell arrangement.  Seems like a good design if you don't care about appearances and your trees are still small enough to fit.  Maybe a heat mat on the bottom if roots don't get warm enough.  I think he was using a blowdryer or something that seemed kind of wacky.

DaytimeLobster

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Re: Indoor citrus/fruit tree grow lights?
« Reply #4 on: September 27, 2018, 02:31:31 PM »
I bought mine on Amazon, BESTVA brand. It's worked out really well for starting seeds when I'm not using it for overwintering

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Re: Indoor citrus/fruit tree grow lights?
« Reply #5 on: September 27, 2018, 05:39:03 PM »
how big are your trees?  There was a guy on another forum who would constantly post pictures of his setup:  two 5gal home depot buckets lined with tinfoil and a light bulb on top, in a clamshell arrangement.  Seems like a good design if you don't care about appearances and your trees are still small enough to fit.  Maybe a heat mat on the bottom if roots don't get warm enough.  I think he was using a blowdryer or something that seemed kind of wacky.

 Most are small although my clementine is a rather big bush. I wouldn't go through all that trouble honestly. My main objective is to keep them alive till next summer and avoid spider mites.

Empoweredandfree

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Re: Indoor citrus/fruit tree grow lights?
« Reply #6 on: September 27, 2018, 05:39:36 PM »
I bought mine on Amazon, BESTVA brand. It's worked out really well for starting seeds when I'm not using it for overwintering

 Excellent I'll look into it.

Millet

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Re: Indoor citrus/fruit tree grow lights?
« Reply #7 on: September 27, 2018, 09:06:18 PM »
I have always used a 1000 watt HID metal halide light, along with heating cables in the soil set at 80-F.  It is true metal halide uses more power, and thus is more expensive to use than LED but I really don't care at all about the cost.   Normally I set the HID light about 2-3 inches above the top of the tree.   Every year the tree produces 5 flushes of growth in a year when both root zone heat and light are used.  I normally turn on the light a half hour before sun set, and turn the light off around 10.30 to 11 O'clock when I retire for the night.
« Last Edit: September 28, 2018, 10:17:38 AM by Millet »

Empoweredandfree

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Re: Indoor citrus/fruit tree grow lights?
« Reply #8 on: September 28, 2018, 02:10:54 AM »
I have always used a 1000 watt HID metal halide light, along with heating cables in the soil set at 80-F.  It is true metal halide uses more power, and thus is more expensive to use than LED but I really don't care at all about the cost.   Normally I set the HID light about 2-3 inches above the top of the tree.   Every year the tree produces 5 flushes of growth when both root zone heat and light are used.  I normally turn on the light a half hour before sun set, and turn the light off around 10.30 to 11 O'clock when I retire for the night.

 Five new flushes in the winter is very impressive. Another consideration is that the trees will be in the room I sleep in. How much is the cost of keeping those lights running?

Millet

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Re: Indoor citrus/fruit tree grow lights?
« Reply #9 on: September 28, 2018, 10:16:54 AM »
I don't know what the cost difference is between using metal halide vs LED.  I really don't care what it is, as I'm after the best growth, not cost.  People probably spend 100 times more money than any additional cost of lighting on soda drinks, or alcohol.  In my estimation it is of no concern.
« Last Edit: September 28, 2018, 10:19:37 AM by Millet »

DaytimeLobster

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Re: Indoor citrus/fruit tree grow lights?
« Reply #10 on: September 28, 2018, 12:08:53 PM »
I used to run a metal halide system to overwinter, but I had a much smaller setup then and where it was near a living area in my house, I did not like the noise from the fan system that is needed to exhaust the hot air in such a small set up. I think in a larger setup it actually would have worked better than my current LED light and I'm glad to see Millet confirm it's a good system for this purpose. I did notice a difference in electricity usage running the different lights.
(keep in mind the cost of electricity in your region may be very different than mine)

it was approx. $50/month to run the metal halide for 16 hours/day.
 
The LED "1500" watt pulls about 1/2 to 1/3 the electricity that the metal halide does (I think ~400 watts in operation) so I would estimate it at about $20-30 a month @ around 16 hrs a day. Again this is napkin math using my region's electricity rates so YMMV

lebmung

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Re: Indoor citrus/fruit tree grow lights?
« Reply #11 on: September 28, 2018, 04:41:03 PM »
So you are not trying to grow fruits in the winter. A big sunny window it's enough. If you don't have enough sun, and you only want to winter your plants then I recommend 1 Led bulb per plant.
Now there are many leds, most of the mare fake. So choose a reliable brand.
For instance I use a philips 1521 lumens LED 12.5W (121 lumens/W)
If you have 3 plants and you put the 3 bulbs for 16 hours a day, your energy bill will come 18kWh
Here it's 15 cents/kWh whic will gives me a bill of 3$ per month.

It\s more complicated than this. with specialized LED with a good PAR you get more growth... and so on.
For your purpose it\s enough. Beware that LEDs in shops are like 70-80 lumens/W and those chinese leds from ebay are almost all fake.

Empoweredandfree

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Re: Indoor citrus/fruit tree grow lights?
« Reply #12 on: September 28, 2018, 07:42:39 PM »
So you are not trying to grow fruits in the winter. A big sunny window it's enough. If you don't have enough sun, and you only want to winter your plants then I recommend 1 Led bulb per plant.
Now there are many leds, most of the mare fake. So choose a reliable brand.
For instance I use a philips 1521 lumens LED 12.5W (121 lumens/W)
If you have 3 plants and you put the 3 bulbs for 16 hours a day, your energy bill will come 18kWh
Here it's 15 cents/kWh whic will gives me a bill of 3$ per month.

It\s more complicated than this. with specialized LED with a good PAR you get more growth... and so on.
For your purpose it\s enough. Beware that LEDs in shops are like 70-80 lumens/W and those chinese leds from ebay are almost all fake.

 Yes I know about the chinese junk LEDs. I may go with a small flourescent that a local nursery sells and try to put them near a window for extra ambient light. Or perhaps I will do the LEDs as you reccomend..

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Re: Indoor citrus/fruit tree grow lights?
« Reply #13 on: September 28, 2018, 07:46:21 PM »
I don't know what the cost difference is between using metal halide vs LED.  I really don't care what it is, as I'm after the best growth, not cost.  People probably spend 100 times more money than any additional cost of lighting on soda drinks, or alcohol.  In my estimation it is of no concern.

 I understand and agree. I have many hobbies and interests aside from plants. I try to provide/buy the best of everything I'm interested in but I'm on a tight budget...If I lived alone I would eliminate TV and other useless garbage and upgrade the lights :-)
« Last Edit: September 28, 2018, 10:04:08 PM by Empoweredandfree »

luak

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Re: Indoor citrus/fruit tree grow lights?
« Reply #14 on: September 28, 2018, 08:30:22 PM »
I have been using this set-up for years, next month October my workshop look like this. these are led shoplights bought from Sam's Club, 5000, normally $35.00 for$24.00.  10 in total .


CanadianCitrus

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Re: Indoor citrus/fruit tree grow lights?
« Reply #15 on: September 28, 2018, 09:13:42 PM »
I bought some clamp lights from Home Depot for like $20. With two clamp lights I bought a 42 watt and a 55 watt CFL in 6500k. I have 3 plants under the two lights. my naval orange is doing well my eureka lemon is pumping out new leaves all over and my keylime is flowering like crazy. BTW my plants are in a dark basement with no windows and it's around 65 degrees.

-from the north

Vlad

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Re: Indoor citrus/fruit tree grow lights?
« Reply #16 on: September 28, 2018, 09:43:22 PM »
luak, what is the temperature?

Empoweredandfree

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Re: Indoor citrus/fruit tree grow lights?
« Reply #17 on: September 28, 2018, 10:06:53 PM »
I have been using this set-up for years, next month October my workshop look like this. these are led shoplights bought from Sam's Club, 5000, normally $35.00 for$24.00.  10 in total .


 Looks great. Does the fruit ripen under those lights? Is that a soursop I see in the picture too?

Empoweredandfree

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Re: Indoor citrus/fruit tree grow lights?
« Reply #18 on: September 28, 2018, 10:10:05 PM »
I bought some clamp lights from Home Depot for like $20. With two clamp lights I bought a 42 watt and a 55 watt CFL in 6500k. I have 3 plants under the two lights. my naval orange is doing well my eureka lemon is pumping out new leaves all over and my keylime is flowering like crazy. BTW my plants are in a dark basement with no windows and it's around 65 degrees.

-from the north

 Thats great to hear and nice work. I'm actually looking now into decorative shelving to organize my plants and arrange the lights but its great to hear all the inexpensive options...

ThangBom321

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Re: Indoor citrus/fruit tree grow lights?
« Reply #19 on: September 29, 2018, 02:39:30 AM »
I'm new to plant growing but I understand a decent amount on lighting due to my old hobby, reef keeping (I use to grow coral in my living room). Here is a simple breakdown of LED and metal halide.

LED:
Pro: better at producing specific wave length, strong par/watt ratio, less heat (but still produces a decent amount of heat), bulbs are more durable (harder to break and last longer), directional light so it shines on whatever area you want it to

Cons: initial cost although prices are significantly less than what they were years ago, because they are so directional, you will need more to cover a larger area, not as powerful as MH,

MH:
Pro: strong light that can pack lots of punch, can be purchase at big box stores, produces heat so it can provide frost protection, not directional so 1 bulb can cover a lot of area (I plan to use 1 250 or 400 watt bulb to light my whole garage up. This will keep it frost free and give adequate lighting for all 30 or so plants.),

Cons: you need to replace the bulb every few years because the bulb wave length will change as the bulb burns and gets older/used, easier to break as they are made of glass, not as precise in color spectrum (but I think it's healthy for plants to have a arrays of colors vs a few specific light colors),

I personally think it's a toss up on cost. LED cost more to buy initially vs MH. However, 1 MH can cover a lot of area. I had used 2 LED grow fixtures to cover my plants last winter. This year, the plants are bigger than last year. this same area would easily be covered by a single MH. The cost to purchase 2 units vs 1 is a consideration. Also, the cost of running LED bank vs 1 MH cancels that price point out too. The MH bulbs in the aquarium hobby are good from 8mo to 14 mo running around 8 hours a day. After that, they don't produce the wave lengths and algae will start growing.

From my aquarium reefing days, I observe way better growth with MH than LED. The MH just had more punch to the light. This is why I will be digging out my old MH system and will be lighting my plants in the garage with a single bulb.

ThangBom

luak

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Re: Indoor citrus/fruit tree grow lights?
« Reply #20 on: September 29, 2018, 08:17:47 AM »
Workshop stays at 68*, Fruits seems to continue to ripen but maybe at a slower pace. In the back is a Jaboticaba and a Atemoya which has a fruit. The Jabo has a lot of fruits and flowers are still outside.
They are all on dollies of the concrete floor.


Empoweredandfree

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Re: Indoor citrus/fruit tree grow lights?
« Reply #21 on: September 29, 2018, 08:11:16 PM »
I'm new to plant growing but I understand a decent amount on lighting due to my old hobby, reef keeping (I use to grow coral in my living room). Here is a simple breakdown of LED and metal halide.

LED:
Pro: better at producing specific wave length, strong par/watt ratio, less heat (but still produces a decent amount of heat), bulbs are more durable (harder to break and last longer), directional light so it shines on whatever area you want it to

Cons: initial cost although prices are significantly less than what they were years ago, because they are so directional, you will need more to cover a larger area, not as powerful as MH,

MH:
Pro: strong light that can pack lots of punch, can be purchase at big box stores, produces heat so it can provide frost protection, not directional so 1 bulb can cover a lot of area (I plan to use 1 250 or 400 watt bulb to light my whole garage up. This will keep it frost free and give adequate lighting for all 30 or so plants.),

Cons: you need to replace the bulb every few years because the bulb wave length will change as the bulb burns and gets older/used, easier to break as they are made of glass, not as precise in color spectrum (but I think it's healthy for plants to have a arrays of colors vs a few specific light colors),

I personally think it's a toss up on cost. LED cost more to buy initially vs MH. However, 1 MH can cover a lot of area. I had used 2 LED grow fixtures to cover my plants last winter. This year, the plants are bigger than last year. this same area would easily be covered by a single MH. The cost to purchase 2 units vs 1 is a consideration. Also, the cost of running LED bank vs 1 MH cancels that price point out too. The MH bulbs in the aquarium hobby are good from 8mo to 14 mo running around 8 hours a day. After that, they don't produce the wave lengths and algae will start growing.

From my aquarium reefing days, I observe way better growth with MH than LED. The MH just had more punch to the light. This is why I will be digging out my old MH system and will be lighting my plants in the garage with a single bulb.

ThangBom

 Great breakdown, thank you.....Good point about the amount of lights needed for LED as opposed to Halide. How does T5 stack up to these two?

Daintree

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Re: Indoor citrus/fruit tree grow lights?
« Reply #22 on: September 30, 2018, 09:03:57 AM »
... I really don't care what it is, as I'm after the best growth, not cost.  People probably spend 100 times more money than any additional cost of lighting on soda drinks, or alcohol.  In my estimation it is of no concern.

When people ask me how much my setup costs to run, I always say "Way less than when my kids were doing horses or beauty pageants!" It's all relative.

Carolyn

ThangBom321

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Re: Indoor citrus/fruit tree grow lights?
« Reply #23 on: September 30, 2018, 10:02:43 PM »
 Great breakdown, thank you.....Good point about the amount of lights needed for LED as opposed to Halide. How does T5 stack up to these two?
[/quote]

I also had t5 HO (high output) lighting on my reefing tank. T5 are nice but they have limited use. They don't pack as much of a punch as far as light output but they work well enough. I used them as supplement lighting over my reef. The MH did most of the growing and the T5 in good reflectors supplied the "color pop" for my corals. What you Reflectors are key to getting the most out of T5 HO lighting systems. T5 is actually the size of the bulbs. They are thinner than T8 bulbs. These are the ones you typically see in the ceilings of office buildings and such. Due to the smaller size, T5 you can fit more bulbs in the same space. Adding a good parabolic reflector greatly increases your lighting downward. Reflectors simply redirect light to where we can benefit from it. T5 bulbs are long and tubular. They are usually laid flat on a horizontal plane. The The light shines 360 degrees however, we generally only place plants on 1 side, usually under the light. Well, if we only place plants on 1 side of the 360 degree shining bulb, we will only use 180degrees of the light produced. By placing a good reflector above these bulbs, we are able to reflect this wasted top half (the other 180 degree of light) downward to be used.

A simple break down of light wave length is with ROYGBIV (red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, violet). Colors on the left are easier to produce and require less energy to produce. Natural sun light is something like 5200k to 5700k IRRC. The lower the number the more you go left in color. Just take a look at the bulbs at the big box stores and see what I mean. You will notice that these bulbs of the same type will be cheaper and produce more candles/lumens for watt the more left you go. The opposite is true as you move right. The more violet (right) you go, the more energy (watt) is needed to produce the same amount of candles/lumens.

Thangbom

northerncitrus

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Re: Indoor citrus/fruit tree grow lights?
« Reply #24 on: October 01, 2018, 12:56:35 AM »
First I will say hello.  This is my first post after lurking for a couple of years.  Also thanks for all the useful information you folks post on here it has been of great help.

I have used a huge T5 unit 4 foot 12 bulb for the last couple of years as a primary light source in winter.I had considered traditional 1000 watt and even cmh 315 watt options but they would have been within inches of wooden support beams so I decided it wasn't worth the risk.  My experience with T5 has been that it will keep the trees alive but they will not thrive under them especially when used as a primary source.  Replacement bulbs are pricey with the risk of breakage in transport.  When I purchased this unit Led lights were expensive and I didn't care for the options.  I need a new light for a single Tangerine tree which will be by itself in front of the patio door.  I have found two options that appear to be good options but I cannot vouch for them at this point.  The first is Quantum boards from Horticulture lighting group.  I have no affiliation with them and will probably avoid them due to high shipping cost to Canada.  If you are in America they ship for free so it might be a good option for lighting. 

The alternative is to build my own Led light using Samsung F strips which ends up being cheaper.  I will be building a light using either 4 or 5 two foot F strips for my Tangerine.  If it works well I will build a unit using 4 foot strips for my trees that receive no sun.  I have not seen either this type of build or a Quantum board build used for Citrus so I cannot vouch for them yet.  Marijuana growers seem to really like both of these types of lights for efficiency and heat reduction as well as good penetration.  I will update on the lights once I see some results.

This link below talks about 3 different Samsung strip leds and a bridgelux.  It also shows grow light configurations that can be built using the strips.  It's a nice little guide.

http://ledgardener.com/diy-led-strip-build-designs-samsung-bridgelux/

ThangBom321

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Re: Indoor citrus/fruit tree grow lights?
« Reply #25 on: October 01, 2018, 01:09:03 AM »
First I will say hello.  This is my first post after lurking for a couple of years.  Also thanks for all the useful information you folks post on here it has been of great help.

I have used a huge T5 unit 4 foot 12 bulb for the last couple of years as a primary light source in winter.I had considered traditional 1000 watt and even cmh 315 watt options but they would have been within inches of wooden support beams so I decided it wasn't worth the risk.  My experience with T5 has been that it will keep the trees alive but they will not thrive under them especially when used as a primary source.  Replacement bulbs are pricey with the risk of breakage in transport.  When I purchased this unit Led lights were expensive and I didn't care for the options.  I need a new light for a single Tangerine tree which will be by itself in front of the patio door.  I have found two options that appear to be good options but I cannot vouch for them at this point.  The first is Quantum boards from Horticulture lighting group.  I have no affiliation with them and will probably avoid them due to high shipping cost to Canada.  If you are in America they ship for free so it might be a good option for lighting. 

The alternative is to build my own Led light using Samsung F strips which ends up being cheaper.  I will be building a light using either 4 or 5 two foot F strips for my Tangerine.  If it works well I will build a unit using 4 foot strips for my trees that receive no sun.  I have not seen either this type of build or a Quantum board build used for Citrus so I cannot vouch for them yet.  Marijuana growers seem to really like both of these types of lights for efficiency and heat reduction as well as good penetration.  I will update on the lights once I see some results.

This link below talks about 3 different Samsung strip leds and a bridgelux.  It also shows grow light configurations that can be built using the strips.  It's a nice little guide.

http://ledgardener.com/diy-led-strip-build-designs-samsung-bridgelux/


Ah, very good info. I forgot about DIY kits. Again, in reference to feeding, we call them retrofit kits. They are simply the wires, ballast and endcaps or sockets to connect the bulbs. It's a bare bone diy option if all you want is a light system.

Good post North.

Empoweredandfree

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Re: Indoor citrus/fruit tree grow lights?
« Reply #26 on: October 01, 2018, 02:37:01 AM »
Great breakdown, thank you.....Good point about the amount of lights needed for LED as opposed to Halide. How does T5 stack up to these two?

I also had t5 HO (high output) lighting on my reefing tank. T5 are nice but they have limited use. They don't pack as much of a punch as far as light output but they work well enough. I used them as supplement lighting over my reef. The MH did most of the growing and the T5 in good reflectors supplied the "color pop" for my corals. What you Reflectors are key to getting the most out of T5 HO lighting systems. T5 is actually the size of the bulbs. They are thinner than T8 bulbs. These are the ones you typically see in the ceilings of office buildings and such. Due to the smaller size, T5 you can fit more bulbs in the same space. Adding a good parabolic reflector greatly increases your lighting downward. Reflectors simply redirect light to where we can benefit from it. T5 bulbs are long and tubular. They are usually laid flat on a horizontal plane. The The light shines 360 degrees however, we generally only place plants on 1 side, usually under the light. Well, if we only place plants on 1 side of the 360 degree shining bulb, we will only use 180degrees of the light produced. By placing a good reflector above these bulbs, we are able to reflect this wasted top half (the other 180 degree of light) downward to be used.

A simple break down of light wave length is with ROYGBIV (red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, violet). Colors on the left are easier to produce and require less energy to produce. Natural sun light is something like 5200k to 5700k IRRC. The lower the number the more you go left in color. Just take a look at the bulbs at the big box stores and see what I mean. You will notice that these bulbs of the same type will be cheaper and produce more candles/lumens for watt the more left you go. The opposite is true as you move right. The more violet (right) you go, the more energy (watt) is needed to produce the same amount of candles/lumens.

Thangbom
[/quote]

 Thank you, I don't see T5 as being worth it based on your info and other reading. The thought of high heat makes me nervous as I live alone aside from my Mother who has health challanges. God forbid a fire breaks out.

Empoweredandfree

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Re: Indoor citrus/fruit tree grow lights?
« Reply #27 on: October 01, 2018, 02:40:44 AM »
First I will say hello.  This is my first post after lurking for a couple of years.  Also thanks for all the useful information you folks post on here it has been of great help.

I have used a huge T5 unit 4 foot 12 bulb for the last couple of years as a primary light source in winter.I had considered traditional 1000 watt and even cmh 315 watt options but they would have been within inches of wooden support beams so I decided it wasn't worth the risk.  My experience with T5 has been that it will keep the trees alive but they will not thrive under them especially when used as a primary source.  Replacement bulbs are pricey with the risk of breakage in transport.  When I purchased this unit Led lights were expensive and I didn't care for the options.  I need a new light for a single Tangerine tree which will be by itself in front of the patio door.  I have found two options that appear to be good options but I cannot vouch for them at this point.  The first is Quantum boards from Horticulture lighting group.  I have no affiliation with them and will probably avoid them due to high shipping cost to Canada.  If you are in America they ship for free so it might be a good option for lighting. 

The alternative is to build my own Led light using Samsung F strips which ends up being cheaper.  I will be building a light using either 4 or 5 two foot F strips for my Tangerine.  If it works well I will build a unit using 4 foot strips for my trees that receive no sun.  I have not seen either this type of build or a Quantum board build used for Citrus so I cannot vouch for them yet.  Marijuana growers seem to really like both of these types of lights for efficiency and heat reduction as well as good penetration.  I will update on the lights once I see some results.

This link below talks about 3 different Samsung strip leds and a bridgelux.  It also shows grow light configurations that can be built using the strips.  It's a nice little guide.

http://ledgardener.com/diy-led-strip-build-designs-samsung-bridgelux/


 Thanks for your info. This looks quite interesting and a good way to provide light without as much heat or energy usage. I'm actually thinking of doing an LED and CFL lighting system. I'm thininking now how to arrange the lights...Clamp lamps? shelving?

 

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