The Basement Nursery

Tucked away in the basement we have two 2-tube shop lights suspended over the seedling trays.

A quick and dirty system of eyelets and nylon cord provides height adjustment on the lamps.

A survey of various sources indicates that there is no advantage to "grow light" or any of the "natural spectrum" lights. The main key is enough light, so these are ordinary 40-watt cool-white bulbs. Currently they are running 24-hr a day. As soon as a most of the seedlings develop their first true leaves I'll probably switch that to an 18-hr a day schedule.

I did choose to use a heating pad intended for this use. Several web sources suggest just using an ordinary drugstore pad as those are a lot cheaper, but using electrical things for uses that they aren't intended for particularly heating elements is just asking for trouble. I didn't bother with a thermostat either -- running full out it keeps the soil in the 80's, which is ideal according to most sources.

The seedling trays are also a bit of an extravagance -- but I like the flexibility of the individual pots since I'm starting a mix of different plants all together.

 


Close-ups:

Here's the first round of seedlings on day zero.

This is Day 8. Peppers are supposed to take 10-21 days to emerge according to the back of the Burpee packet, but clearly they like the warm.

As they emerge I've been moving them from the plastic covered tray to an uncovered one.

 

The back row are "Biker Billy" Halapenos. The next row is "Tangerine Dream". The tiny ones in the middle row left are Caribbean Reds. Front two rows are various kind of tomatos.