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

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Old 2 Weeks Ago   #31
Nan_PA_6b
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Al, I'm growing out a pot of (small) F1's of a cross I made last summer. They are doing very well under these lights, producing tasty fruit. I leave the lights on 24/7. Here's the setup, 5 lights on chains, with aluminum foil to reflect light back:
20180108_133735.jpg

and with the foil peeled back (white table also reflects light):
Tomatogrowing.jpg
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Old 2 Weeks Ago   #32
AlittleSalt
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Nan, I may be confused a little. They produce tomatoes growing under your lights? If so, that's cool.
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Old 2 Weeks Ago   #33
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This is only my forth winter of starting seeds inside. There is one thing that still puzzles me. During the day and part of the night - I turn on the lights for around 16 hours. The other 8 hours are spent in the dark. The plants always grow much faster in the dark. The next day when it's time to turn on the lights, I have to adjust the lighting first because the plants have grown into the lights overnight. I have noticed the same growing habit with outdoor plants too.

The reason why I'm still using the old T12 light fixtures is because I have six fixtures and a case of tubes just sitting around wanting to be used. At the rate of their longevity, it looks like I'll be using them for the next 20 years .

Yes, I'm the kind of person that drives a car until it is no longer worth fixing.
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Old 2 Weeks Ago   #34
Worth1
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Plants collect energy in tbe daylight and grow at night.
Florescent lame degrade the minute you start using them.
You won't notice it but your plants will.
Two years is all I will run them.
Then they go to a house lighting fixture to live out the reast of their lives.
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Old 2 Weeks Ago   #35
Nan_PA_6b
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AlittleSalt View Post
Nan, I may be confused a little. They produce tomatoes growing under your lights? If so, that's cool.
Yes, and they're even tasty. They won't break any production records, but it's great for winter.

Nan
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Old 2 Weeks Ago   #36
Al@NC
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Thats awesome Nan!
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Old 2 Weeks Ago   #37
AlittleSalt
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Very cool Nan!
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Old 1 Week Ago   #38
carolyn137
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Worth1 View Post
Plants collect energy in tbe daylight and grow at night.
Florescent lame degrade the minute you start using them.
You won't notice it but your plants will.
Two years is all I will run them.
Then they go to a house lighting fixture to live out the reast of their lives.
You made an important point above Worth and with your permission ,and thanks in advance for giving that permission to me.

Yes there are two cycles,light and dark. Photosynthesis ocurs in the light cycle,whether sufficient natural light or tube lights, and the major energy compounds made via Photosynthesis are ATP and GTP.

During the dark cycle those energy compounds allow for building the structures of the seedlings,whether they be be leaves or roots or stems or petioles or branches ,or whatever.

So you never, ever want to leave lights on 24/7 since that prevents the normal development of a seedling.

I started out in Denver when I was there and had limited space in the backyard for tomato plants ,using those very expensive 4 ft long tubes, but gave that up when I read that a simple warm tube(pink) and a regular florescent light ( white) was all you needed.

Carolyn
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Old 1 Week Ago   #39
AlittleSalt
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Thanks for the explanation you two

I potted up 39 tomato plants today which is around half of the seeds I started. I will be selling or giving away some of them. All of the expensive super hybrid seeds germinated. The packs they came in said 80% - I expected less percentage, but was happily surprised.
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