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Seedling lamps, their types, advantages and disadvantages, selection rules

Seedling lamps, their types, advantages and disadvantages, selection rules


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A lack of lighting occurs when plants are grown during a period with inappropriate daylight hours. In this case, the seedling lamp and the correct organization of the illumination allow you to get healthy, strong seedlings.

Content:

  • What kind of light do plants need
  • Influence of color on development
  • Exposure to the ultraviolet and infrared spectrum
  • Types of lamps
  • Sodium lamps
  • Fluorescent backlight
  • The advantages of phytolamps
  • LEDs
  • Homemade LED strip lighting
  • Lighting rules

What kind of light do plants need

Vegetable crops, including tomatoes, sweet and hot peppers, cabbage and cucumbers, and many annual flowers, are usually grown from seedlings. To get early flowering and fruiting, crops are sown in February or March, but the daylight hours during this period are very short, cloudy weather is often for weeks. Naturally, the plants located in the room suffer from a lack of lighting. This has a detrimental effect on their general condition, they become pale, stretched out.

The seedling lamp helps to increase the length of daylight hours, which affects the acceleration of the development process.

Optimal illumination is especially important for crops with long growing seasons.

For the normal development of plants, you will need to select a device with certain parameters. Natural lighting is characterized by the presence of waves of different lengths, and if the human eye perceives far from the entire spectrum of solar radiation, then it is very important for plants to receive all of its diversity.

Waves of a certain length have a directional effect and stimulate the development of the root system, stem, leaves.

Influence of color on development

The use of lamps to illuminate seedlings accelerates the process of photosynthesis, creating a system of additional lighting should be taken into account: blue and blue shades inhibit stem growth, but stimulate the process of cell division, those. with not intensive growth, there is a noticeable thickening of the stems.

The red color stimulates growth, the predominance of this part of the spectrum when growing plants leads to the rapid development of the root system. Lighting with a red device accelerates the onset of flowering, the formation of fruits and their ripening.
Orange works identically to red, but the intensity of its effect is slightly lower.

Virtually no effect - green and yellow shades, the rays containing this part of the spectrum are almost completely reflected from the leaves. Nevertheless, without their presence, it is impossible to provide conditions for the full growth of pleasures.
Considering the above, we conclude: when choosing a lamp, you need to think about whether you want to get strong plants with thick stems, to bring the beginning of flowering or fruiting closer.

The device should be placed at a certain height above the containers with seedlings. The duration of daylight hours for plants should be limited in time and should not exceed 15 hours.

Exposure to ultraviolet and infrared light

The spectrum of natural light is waves visible to the eye and those that are invisible to humans. Ultraviolet waves destroy harmful microorganisms, but you should not get too carried away with devices, in the glow of which ultraviolet rays predominate, should not be, their excessive amount also poses a danger to small plants.

Exposure to infrared light leads to acceleration of growth processes, active fruit formation, and development of the root system. The process of accumulation of vitamins is activated, the growth of leaves is accelerated.

Supplementing with lamps that produce infrared radiation leads to a change in the temperature regime of keeping plants.

The human eye does not react to infrared radiation, we perceive it as a thermal effect. At a temperature not exceeding + 20 C, infrared rays have a beneficial effect on seedlings, promote their growth, and accelerate the formation of new leaves. But at higher temperatures, infrared lamps can cause burns on the leaves, due to the increase in temperature, wilting of the plant can be observed.

What types of lamps are used

When organizing backlighting, it is recommended to take into account both the spectrum and the type of lighting sources. When choosing a type, you should weigh well all their positive aspects and take into account the negative aspects of their use. Note that not all lighting devices known to us are suitable for growing seedlings.

Popular options for illuminating seedlings are the use of devices:

  • luminescent;
  • phytoluminescent;
  • sodium;
  • LED.

Depending on what goals are pursued by highlighting the seedlings, it is recommended to use the above types of lamps, the light emitted by them will allow you to grow strong, actively fruiting bushes. It is irrational to use incandescent halogen lamps, their radiation is dominated by yellow-red rays. They are not very effective in terms of impact on growing plants, moreover, such devices have a short service life.

Sodium lamps

In greenhouse conditions, it is customary to use sodium lamps.

They belong to gas-discharge ones, presented in the following forms:

  • DNat;
  • DNZ;
  • DRiZ.

The spectrum of their radiation is dominated by the orange and red terms. Such devices are ideal for organizing the illumination of seedlings at a later stage of their development. The advantages of sodium lamps include high radiation intensity and low energy consumption.

Such lamps can be used in the case of growing seedlings at home, but their power should not exceed 100 watts. DNaZ devices are suitable for home conditions. Equipped with mirrored reflectors increases the light intensity, which reduces the number of light sources used.

If the length of the window sill does not exceed 1.5 m, then it will be enough to install 1 device with a power of 100 W.

When using HPS, 1 light source will need to be installed for each meter of the window sill: the design of this type of luminaire does not provide for the presence of a reflector, i.e. the intensity of the illumination is lower.

DRiZ is recommended to be used as an additional light source when using other types of sodium lamps, they will enrich their spectrum, make it complete.

For clarity, we will indicate the advantages and disadvantages of sodium lamas in the table.

Positive sidesdisadvantages
Saving energy consumptionThere is a shortage of blue rays in the spectrum, therefore it is recommended to use it at the final stages of growing seedlings
High efficiencyGeneration of heat, which adversely affects seedlings placed in a well-heated room
Long service lifeBulky devices

The relatively high price makes it impractical to use them when growing a small number of plants.

Fluorescent backlight

Such lighting is characterized by a full spectrum, it can be used for seedlings at any stage of their development. But it should be borne in mind that household sources have low power. For full illumination of a 1m long window sill, 2-3 devices are required. In the spectrum of such lamps, there is a lack of rays from the red part of it.

Due to the low power of the luminescent devices, it is recommended to install them at a distance of 15 to 25 cm above the plantings. Luminescent devices require the installation of additional ballast, through which the lighting is switched on and off. The use of energy-saving analogs will not allow you to get full backlighting.

The advantages of phytolamps

The best option is the use of special phytolamps. They are luminescent, emitting a wide spectrum of waves necessary for active development.

In domestic conditions, devices of different power are used: 30, 40, 60, 100 W. Some luminaire models are equipped with reflectors. The light emitted by some species has pink and lilac shades that are unusual for our eyes.

A bicolor lamp also belongs to the universal options, the light emitted by it contains blue and red waves in approximately equal areas. It can be applied at different stages of seedling development.

An example of such a universal device is the Fitosvet lamp, which is popular among amateur vegetable growers.

Neon lights

As a modern solution, one can imagine the use of LED lamps for seedlings.

Among its advantages are:

  • economical energy consumption and long service life;
  • the presence in the spectrum of all colors, including blue and red, the possibility of using it throughout the entire period of growing seedlings;
  • environmental friendliness of the materials used in the manufacture;
  • high intensity lighting;
  • generation of a small amount of heat, which allows the appliance to be used throughout the day.

The widespread use of this promising type of backlighting is limited by the relatively high prices of lamps. The use of cheap LED strips requires correct installation and careful power calculation. You will also need to install a power supply.

Homemade LED strip lighting

Since the cost of lamps is high, you can make a homemade lamp from ribbons to illuminate the seedlings.

To begin with, a platform of a suitable length is made from plastic platinum or a special profile for an LED strip.

The ribbons are colored, blue and red, their ratio should be 4: 1, for 4 red stripes, 1 blue is taken. The strips are glued to the platform. If you need to highlight areas of complex shapes, then you do not need to use the platform.

The system assumes the installation of a power supply, without which work is impossible.

Lighting rules

The use of any light source requires observing the change of day and night, the length of photoperiods depends on the type of plants grown.

The placement of seedling containers on the east and south windows, where there is much more natural light, will help to reduce the cost of additional lighting. On northern windows and on cloudy days, the duration of additional lighting must be increased.

Better quality illumination is obtained, installed at the minimum allowable distance from the seedlings.

Effective supplemental lighting can be obtained by choosing a light source with parameters suitable for the plants you plan to grow.


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