Tomatoville® Gardening Forums


Notices

New to growing your own tomatoes? This is the forum to learn the successful techniques used by seasoned tomato growers. Questions are welcome, too.

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old December 24, 2018   #16
PaulF
Tomatovillian™
 
PaulF's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Brownville, Ne
Posts: 2,807
Default

After several of the cheapest I could find and after the human heating pads had to be made with regulations requiring they shut off after an hour or two, went with a heat mat that had a thermostat. More expensive but it has lasted four years so far where the cheap-os lasted a max of two before just quitting.

The very best solution was a heating pad made for the waterbed my boys had in the 90s. It has a thermostat but can get so hot it melts the plastic seed trays so care must be taken. It is the heater for my peppers. So long as there is a wooden spacer a couple inches thick it is perfect and is fifteen years in use as a plant mat and counting.
__________________
there's two things money can't buy; true love and home grown tomatoes.
PaulF is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 24, 2018   #17
Worth1
Tomatovillian™
 
Worth1's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: earth
Posts: 35,997
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by PaulF View Post
After several of the cheapest I could find and after the human heating pads had to be made with regulations requiring they shut off after an hour or two, went with a heat mat that had a thermostat. More expensive but it has lasted four years so far where the cheap-os lasted a max of two before just quitting.

The very best solution was a heating pad made for the waterbed my boys had in the 90s. It has a thermostat but can get so hot it melts the plastic seed trays so care must be taken. It is the heater for my peppers. So long as there is a wooden spacer a couple inches thick it is perfect and is fifteen years in use as a plant mat and counting.

I suppose a person could chop out the safety shut off rheostat and put in a regular rheostat.
But without calculations you would end up burning the house down.
Calculations by meaning get one that wont go up to full power like a light dimmer.

A rheostat is a variable resistor use to control higher currant/power than a potentiometer.
__________________
Happy Fermenting.
I Texas.
Worth
Worth1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 24, 2018   #18
Koala Doug
Tomatovillian™
 
Koala Doug's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2017
Location: Detroit
Posts: 512
Default

I use an old heating pad from the '60s... it doesn't shut off automatically and it was already sitting unused in the closet.


The only issue is the lowest temperature is too hot to be used without some sort of a barrier between the pad and the seeds. I just put a few towels on top of it, monitor the temperature with my Thermopen (instant read cooking thermometer), and adjust the amount of towels as necessary.

Koala Doug is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 24, 2018   #19
Cole_Robbie
Tomatovillian™
 
Cole_Robbie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Illinois, zone 6
Posts: 8,257
Default

I use lights for heat. Even CFLs put off a decent amount of heat if you have enough of them in a small space.
Cole_Robbie is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 24, 2018   #20
biscuitridge
Tomatovillian™
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: washington
Posts: 153
Default

Just go to the greenhouse megastar and look up PR-HMC commercial propagation mat,they are the best,they last for many years,and give even all across the mat. They come in 3 different sizes.please don't waste your time dinking around with unsafe alternatives, it's not worth it!
biscuitridge is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 24, 2018   #21
biscuitridge
Tomatovillian™
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: washington
Posts: 153
Default

Megastore,arg!
biscuitridge is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 24, 2018   #22
GrowingCoastal
Tomatovillian™
 
GrowingCoastal's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2016
Location: Vancouver Island Canada BC
Posts: 880
Default

I knew someone who buried a waterbed heater in a few inches of sand on top of a greenhouse bench. It worked well.
GrowingCoastal is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 25, 2018   #23
mike5953
Tomatovillian™
 
mike5953's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Raleigh, NC
Posts: 64
Default

I've been using a couple of Root Radiance heat mats (10''x20.75''), that I bought from Amazon, and they have worked well for several years. They're just the right size for a single flat, and are moderately priced.
Initially I didn't use a thermostat, but the starter mix was getting up over 90F.
Once I put a thermostat on them, and set to 80F, the germination rates of my finicky pepper seeds improved greatly. The down side is the cost of the thermostats (about $35).
mike5953 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 25, 2018   #24
PlainJane
Tomatovillian™
 
PlainJane's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: North Florida
Posts: 403
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by biscuitridge View Post
Just go to the greenhouse megastar and look up PR-HMC commercial propagation mat,they are the best,they last for many years,and give even all across the mat. They come in 3 different sizes.please don't waste your time dinking around with unsafe alternatives, it's not worth it!
Good advice...I’ve been looking at those.
PlainJane is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 25, 2018   #25
PlainJane
Tomatovillian™
 
PlainJane's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: North Florida
Posts: 403
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by mike5953 View Post
I've been using a couple of Root Radiance heat mats (10''x20.75''), that I bought from Amazon, and they have worked well for several years. They're just the right size for a single flat, and are moderately priced.
Initially I didn't use a thermostat, but the starter mix was getting up over 90F.
Once I put a thermostat on them, and set to 80F, the germination rates of my finicky pepper seeds improved greatly. The down side is the cost of the thermostats (about $35).
Thanks for that ... I certainly don’t want to cook the pepper seeds I just received from Vertiloom in Belgium.
PlainJane is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 25, 2018   #26
PlainJane
Tomatovillian™
 
PlainJane's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: North Florida
Posts: 403
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by GrowingCoastal View Post
I knew someone who buried a waterbed heater in a few inches of sand on top of a greenhouse bench. It worked well.
Wow. Now there’s a re-use recycle kind of person.
PlainJane is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 25, 2018   #27
Canehdian
Tomatovillian™
 
Join Date: Jan 2015
Location: Calgary, Alberta Canada
Posts: 70
Default

I just use the common/inexpensive 10 x 20 inch ones, but I put a 1 x 2 foot floor tile between it and the seed tray to diffuse the heat, and then plug it in to the light timer, so it goes off at night in synch with the lights. This seems to ameliorate the overheating issue and I typically get north of 90% germination.
Canehdian is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 25, 2018   #28
PlainJane
Tomatovillian™
 
PlainJane's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: North Florida
Posts: 403
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Koala Doug View Post
I use an old heating pad from the '60s... it doesn't shut off automatically and it was already sitting unused in the closet.


The only issue is the lowest temperature is too hot to be used without some sort of a barrier between the pad and the seeds. I just put a few towels on top of it, monitor the temperature with my Thermopen (instant read cooking thermometer), and adjust the amount of towels as necessary.

That was my first thought, but when I went scrounging for an older heating pad I realized we must have gotten rid of them in one of the moves. Dang!
PlainJane is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 25, 2018   #29
PlainJane
Tomatovillian™
 
PlainJane's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: North Florida
Posts: 403
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cole_Robbie View Post
I use lights for heat. Even CFLs put off a decent amount of heat if you have enough of them in a small space.
So you don’t bother with bottom heat for things like peppers?
PlainJane is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 25, 2018   #30
PlainJane
Tomatovillian™
 
PlainJane's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: North Florida
Posts: 403
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Canehdian View Post
I just use the common/inexpensive 10 x 20 inch ones, but I put a 1 x 2 foot floor tile between it and the seed tray to diffuse the heat, and then plug it in to the light timer, so it goes off at night in synch with the lights. This seems to ameliorate the overheating issue and I typically get north of 90% germination.
Now that’s a good idea - plugging the heat into the light timer. I would have left the heat on constantly.
And the tile diffuser ... I’m sure we have tile kicking around the garage.
Thanks!
PlainJane is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -4. The time now is 12:10 AM.


★ Tomatoville® is a registered trademark of Commerce Holdings, LLC ★ All Content ©2019 Commerce Holdings, LLC ★