Grow lights are up and running!

A few days ago I finally divised a system to hang my LED grow light that my friend Coz got me for my birthday/Christmas.  I’m quite excited!  I took an over-the-toilet wire rack and simply omitted all but the top shelf and only put two of the leg segments on each leg so it wasn’t quite as tall and bam!  It is the perfect height for my grow light.  I’m really excited to see how it does.  I started 3 varieties of tomato (Green Zebra, Striped Roman and Japanese Black Trifele), Mimosa nutalli, Plumeria rubra, and a mix of Aloe species.  Weeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!  I also planted my lettuce and pea seeds in the garden (soil temp was 47, all they need is 40!)  So I’m hoping in 4-5 weeks I should have some fresh veggies to supplement my diet.  I’m growing Marvel peas, Forellenschuss lettuce (which means trout speckled, self enclosing i.e it is a red spotted romaine lettuce), and Simpson elite leaf lettuce.  I’m so excited!  Anyways, here are some really cruddy pictures of my set up.

Whenever I turn the lights off this thing bathes my entire living room in a weird purple glow.

As you can see it is made up of red and blue LED lights.  This is because these are the wavelengths plants use to photosynthesize, so why should you waste energy producing light that is just going to be unused by the plant?  I’ve never used an LED grow light before though so I’m really hoping it works as well as my old florescent ones did (they burned out and each bulb is ~$100 to replace…not gonna happen).

This is what the entire set up looks like.  It is perched atop one of my bookshelves so that it is at an easy height for me to check on the progress.  One of my mimosa seeds has already started sending out roots!  That first primary root is always just so great to see.  I’m not a dork, I swear.  But anyways back to my seed rack.  I really think it’s a pretty snazzy setup if I do say so myself.  I like the rack on top because now I have a place to store my seed packets that is out of the way yet close enough that I can grab them to show people what on earth I’m growing.

In other plant news, our first blooms are open!  I thought it’d be my Lenten rose but it turned out to be my Siberian squill.  I’d post a picture but the one I took today was blurry so now ya’ll have to wait til tomorrow.  I know you’re anxious.  I can smell your nerves.

3 thoughts on “Grow lights are up and running!

  1. Hehe, yeah, seeing seeds begin to grow is exciting! I’m always watching for the first roots as well.

    I wish I still had space to grow Green Zebra. It holds fond memories of my summer job at the vegetable farm.

  2. I love Green Zebra. Not only is it pretty but it actually has great taste too. I do often cut it up and put it in pasta and wonder “why on earth did I put celery/green pepper in my pasta?! and then remember that its a tomato.

    • Differently-coloured tomatoes are great fun. I had yellow currant tomatoes for the last couple of years (they don’t seem to be growing this year, sigh), and took some in to work one day – great guessing game. Many of my colleagues – master horticulturists, even – couldn’t tell it was a tomato!

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