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PVC Aeroponic or NFT for Lettuce? How many lights?

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PVC Aeroponic or NFT for Lettuce? How many lights?

Postby kraymitchell » Aug 25, 2012 5:14 pm

Hey All. First time poster here.

My wife and I would like to start growing hydroponic lettuce at home. We're going to convert our spare room into a grow room for this.

I have been doing a lot of research and trying to decide between building a PVC Aeroponic or PVC NFT system.

They both seem to be great technologies, but I am unsure which I should actually go with for the purpose of growing lettuce. I am hoping somebody here can point me in the right direction on which method would be better to use.

I am also wondering about lighting. I will be using HO T5 lights but I am unsure of a few things with this decision.

For lettuce specifically, would 3000k or 6500k work better (They are 2000 lumen bulbs)?

When I setup the lights (As eventually I want to stack multiple units because of the low profile) should I be doing a single bulb running parallel with each PVC pipe? Should I get a larger 4-6 bulb unit to cover the entire unit?

I found these guys online and they appear to put their lights on the side (Which I found strange, wouldn't this mess with the available light on the outer heads?
See photo at this URL
http://www.podponics.com/content/grow-pods

Thanks in advance for the assitance.
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Re: PVC Aeroponic or NFT for Lettuce? How many lights?

Postby Jersm » Aug 26, 2012 8:48 pm

i havent tried the indoor system i have only used good old potting soil and self watering/wicking pots.

for lighting you should know the Red spectrum "Warm whites" 3000k range promotes stem development and fruiting. The blue spectrum "cool whites" 5000k+ promotes foliage growth. You would think using only blue would give you very leafy letus but they end up with very weak droopystems. letus is mainly a leafy plant so it will benefit from a 5000k+ blue spectrum but you still need some red 3000k range too. Since after all the nothing beats the full spectrum of the sun but thats what you are trying to imitate.

You will want to use both a cool white and a warm white in each light fixture assuming they fit 2 each. this is also why people sell full spectrum tubes to eliminate the need for a red and blue spectrum to be individual.

as for the picture It seems the other side of the container is open to sun light to help iluminate the container. You are way better off putting the light above the plants for maximum photosynthesis. you can awlays lift and lower the ligth fixture if its too hot but fluorecents dont get very hot but im not sure about Highoutput.
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Re: PVC Aeroponic or NFT for Lettuce? How many lights?

Postby kraymitchell » Aug 26, 2012 9:36 pm

Thank for the info! I will look into some full spectrum lights, if not I'll run the 3000 and 6500 side by side.

As for the photo, there is no natural light, it's actually a shipping container. Its a small farm in Atlanta, its all in shipping containers with no natural light. I've emailed them for info on their setup, not sure if they will respond or not.

Thanks again!
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Re: PVC Aeroponic or NFT for Lettuce? How many lights?

Postby hotsummerone » Aug 26, 2012 10:04 pm

Thank you for sharing.
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