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Heat lamps for seedlings?

Old 01-21-2019, 06:52 PM
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Default Heat lamps for seedlings?

With the vast experience found on this site I thought I'd give this a whirl!

I have about 400 small seedling starter cups ready to sow with a variety of seeds. They fit on three 6ft folding tables, placed in a "U" pattern. So the size is approximately, 11 ft X 6 ft. I make my dirt mix by hand using goat manure, chicken poop, and black cow amongst other things. It smells bad so I cannot bring these tables inside to sow. This year I want to sow the seeds now, instead of waiting until March 1st which is what I always do.

If I built a clear plastic enclosure around the tables from ground to about 5ft high with the ability to seal the entire thing as much as possible, would one or two heat lamps placed inside keep the temps above say 55 degree's when the temps go near freezing on some nights here in Central FL?

If yes, what size heat lamps would I need?

As always thanks!
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Old 01-21-2019, 07:05 PM
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Who really knows how big they need to be with no insulation,
But I would use a couple of 250Watt bulbs.
Just because I have some

probably need to set them up on stats so they only come on when needed

mixing a bunch of sh!t by hand that has not decomposed yet and stinks real bad does not sound like what I would do
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Old 01-21-2019, 07:21 PM
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I've been using this mix now for 30 years...... My tomatoes taste like real Jersey tomatoes, but grown here in FL....Jersey Tomatoes are arguably THE best tasting tomatoes in this country.

My mix includes:

My own Compost.
3 types of manure
Peat Moss
Coffee Grounds
Fish guts
Iron
Trace minerals
Pearl Lite

Then I run it by my ag guy who checks the PH, and other stuff and if the mix matches the soil from NJ, or gets very close to it, away we go. Jersey soil is by far the best to grow many garden plants! Not called the "Garden State" for nothing!!!






I also always use "heirloom seeds" which I think makes a huge difference as well. I never use store bought plants.

250 Watt huh......
Insulation...? Guess I could buy some panels for the sides?
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Old 01-21-2019, 07:40 PM
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Hot air rises, so some blankets thrown over it when I drops down below freezing to keep the warm air inside may help.
the tables and containers will all absorb the heat and hold it also with not much wind blowing thru.
Just try what ever size you can find easily.
back in the old days just regular incandescent light bulbs were used to add a little heat
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Old 01-21-2019, 07:48 PM
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Originally Posted by spraynet 1 View Post
I've been using this mix now for 30 years...... My tomatoes taste like real Jersey tomatoes, but grown here in FL....Jersey Tomatoes are arguably THE best tasting tomatoes in this country.

My mix includes:

My own Compost.
3 types of manure
Peat Moss
Coffee Grounds
Fish guts
Iron
Trace minerals
Pearl Lite

Then I run it by my ag guy who checks the PH, and other stuff and if the mix matches the soil from NJ, or gets very close to it, away we go. Jersey soil is by far the best to grow many garden plants! Not called the "Garden State" for nothing!!!






I also always use "heirloom seeds" which I think makes a huge difference as well. I never use store bought plants.

250 Watt huh......
Insulation...? Guess I could buy some panels for the sides?
greenhouse bubble wrap. Made specifically for UV and plant insulation.

Charliesgreenhouse.com
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Old 01-21-2019, 07:50 PM
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Buy canvas drop cloth and use it with the heavy mil plastic sheeting. you could use 2 heat lamps and monitor the temps. I use auto start thermometers for my heaters in my green house.

Make the room as small as possible and as low as possible...

John
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Old 01-21-2019, 07:58 PM
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you would be better off with these (not an endorsement of the brand or WWW site just using as example)

you will get faster response of the seed breaking dormancy, the roots will grow a great deal better, the heat will rise up all around the plant, and there will be less of the drying effect on the leaves of the plants which is especially important for young seedlings Vs heat lamps

https://www.qcsupply.com/250222-stanfield-heat-mat-24-36.html?gclid=EAIaIQobChMIxZyu9b6A4AIVBtbACh2BZAWA EAQYBCABEgKC7fD_BwE

there are all types of prices too


https://www.google.com/search?q=gree...w=1366&bih=623
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Old 01-21-2019, 08:09 PM
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I would want to bring them inside. I like those big cheap coconut fiber blocks for seed starting then the chicken/manure mix when time to plant. Scent free. Also you probably already have this but Baker Heirloom puts out an awesome catalog of rare seeds many if which grow well in the south. It's a fun book to flip through.
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Old 01-21-2019, 08:20 PM
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STEELA: Definitely checking that out, thanks

jtburf: Great idea, the tables are all adjustable to about 2ft off the ground, I will do that...thanks!

Insider: Checking these out as well, thank you!

Chrisbtr: Can't bring inside.....they really stink! I use another seed place, but I will check into Baker as well, thanks.
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Old 01-21-2019, 08:21 PM
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You want heat mats.

I use the mats from Hydrofarm.

For just popping seeds, you dont need the controllers. Just plug em in and they'll be fine, especially in a cool garage. If they are too cold still, put something insulated like soundboard under the mats on your table.

Keep track of the soil moisture because they will now dry out faster.
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Old 01-21-2019, 08:23 PM
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Ok....While the heat mats would be really easy to use, if I spent that kind of coin to grow seeds, my bride would have have committed. Nice alternative though, gosh that would be so freaking easy!!!
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Old 01-21-2019, 08:33 PM
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I might have some old ones laying around I could send ya. Freebies.

Let me dig around for a moment.
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Old 01-21-2019, 08:36 PM
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If your not using them I would gladly pay to have them shipped.
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Old 01-21-2019, 08:37 PM
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Crazy question here.....Would an old but working heating blanket work? It would be large enough to cover all three tables! I would just have to make sure it doesn't get wet.
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Old 01-21-2019, 08:47 PM
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No idea on the blanket. Imagine it would. Why not?

I found two of the 4 footers. I think I have more old ones in my barn up the hill. I can't start the 4 wheeler to go up there tonight because the dogs will go bonkers and wake my kiddo. I wil, go 1st thing tomorrow am and find them.

I will gladly send them to you if you want them. You don't need to pay for shipping. You do enough for others, it would be nice to do for you.

Let me know. No worries either way.
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Old 01-21-2019, 09:00 PM
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Barn????
4 Wheeler??
Up the Hill???
Outside Dogs???

Where the heck do you live Man?? And how big is your property?? You must be one of those farmers who gets up at 04:00, goes to bed at 22:00 and does that 6 days a week!


Sorry, your response is just so funny and honest.......Not many folks I know have one of the things you mentioned let alone all 4....

I would love them!!! Sending you a "PM"
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Old 01-22-2019, 03:03 AM
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What about a parasene heater.
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Old 01-22-2019, 04:01 AM
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I think some of you way over think things...

Why not use some simple aluminum clamp on work lights (6") with 75 watt incandescent bulbs? ~$8/

A single incandescent bulb in a small space can easily get that space to well over 100°.

Last edited by aubv; 01-22-2019 at 05:28 AM.
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Old 01-22-2019, 04:29 AM
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Go get a few aerogarden hydroponic systems with the seed starter insert. I have 4 of them and each starts around 32 seedlings. Then move them to dirt when they are nice and strong. Pretty easy and not very expensive. You can "make" them grow any way that you want, short and stocky or tall and skinny. I found that I get better quality plants doing it this way. I can control everything, light, nutrients and I can pick out the bad/weak seedlings and start a new seed in the same spot. They germinate pretty quickly too.
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Old 01-22-2019, 05:38 AM
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Heat mats are far superior to lights in this situation.

Go to the Hydrofarm website and decide what would work. I am one of their resellers, and I'd be happy to have something drop-shipped at my cost. (I used to stock and sell a lot of their stuff before retiring.)
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