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Thread: VFT's, Sunlight, and Fluoresecent Lighting

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    Tropical Fish Enthusiast jimscott's Avatar
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    VFT's, Sunlight, and Fluoresecent Lighting

    I was recently challenged to prove that artificial lighting was inferior to the direct sunlight. I've been echoing what the experts say because I don't have years of experience. So I googled it and came across this article. The guy refuted the article and said it was bogus. Whadda think?

    http://www.waynesthisandthat.com/fluorescent.html

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    dashman's Avatar
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    I think the consensus that I have come to adopt is that although it is possible to grow indoors, you will get better results outdoors in full sun. Then there is the dormancy thing that is hard to reproduce indoors.

    His experiment didn't really compare results with outdoor grown vfts. He kind of sputtered around different topics without a clear conclusion.

    Also, I think he believes that plants, vfts in this case, are active whenever lights are on. Don't they have a photoperiod? Keeping lights on for 18 hours doesn't necessarily mean the plants will be active all 18 hours.

    The thing that tickled me was this statement...
    "Venus Fly Traps grow so slowly that it's hard to make comparisons."

    What? Perhaps he should move them outside and maybe he would se how fast they can grow. True they take a few years to mature, but I would consider them fast growers in terms of leaf output. A mature clump will put out 50-60 traps in a season maybe (guess)? That's a fairly fast growing plant in my book.

    I'm no expert. Just my opinions.

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    Hello, I must be going... Not a Number's Avatar
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    I don't understand most of the bigotry against using artificial lighting with Venus Flytraps. Mention you grow Drosera rotundifolia, D. intermedia, D. capillaris, or D. brevifolia under lights and nothing. Mention you grow Sarracenia or Dionaea under lights and howls of protests that you have to grow them in sunlight. Never mind that these Drosera species can be found growing side by side with Dionaea and Sarracenia in nature.

    Here's Ivan Snyder's setup in 2005, just two sets of 40watt (4 tubes) four foot shop lights. Cool White. Yep, that's it, he only grows about twenty different species/hybrids at one time.:
    http://www.forbesconrad.com/gallerie...46-750x414.jpg

    See the Sarracenia
    http://www.forbesconrad.com/gallerie...82-750x414.jpg

    Hard to make out but behind the Cephalotus is a Dionaea muscipula from Hosford Bog in Florida
    http://www.forbesconrad.com/gallerie...35-750x414.jpg
    it's to the right in this photo
    http://www.forbesconrad.com/gallerie...27-750x414.jpg

    Here's the Sarracenia in 2007:
    http://www.forbesconrad.com/gallerie...77-750x414.jpg

    Here's the Hosford, FL VFT in 2007:
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/byblis/1735684423/
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/byblis/1736471732/
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/byblis/1736471368/

    Here are the same plants as of last year:




    He collected these plants in 1991 or 1997 and has been growing them under lights ever since. He has given away the Sarracenia one or two times only to get it back a year later.

    But then you can't grow either of these species under lights more than a couple years, right?

    PS: and who said you need big pots to get either of the species to grow large?
    Grand Hotel... always the same. People come, people go. Nothing ever happens.

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    dashman's Avatar
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    Those are all good cases for the feasibility of growing indoors. More like proof of concept.

    For the record, I did say it was possible. I still hold firm to my belief that you will get better results outdoors.

    Just my opinion and I am not one to attempt to force my opinions upon others. Especially when I am not as seasoned as others such as yourself.

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    Hermopolis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dashman View Post
    Those are all good cases for the feasibility of growing indoors. More like proof of concept.

    For the record, I did say it was possible. I still hold firm to my belief that you will get better results outdoors.

    Just my opinion and I am not one to attempt to force my opinions upon others. Especially when I am not as seasoned as others such as yourself.
    I agree with Not A Number that there is a bigotry against growing VFTs and sarracenias under artificial light. In my setup, I grow both VFTs and sarracenias using a combo of metal halides and compact flourescents, and I can report good results in both cases.

    Sure, you cannot replace the quantity and quality of light that comes from that great big fiery fusion furnace in the sky with an electric lamp. However, I think the sacrifice is a small price to pay for being able to control other environmental factor: water, humidity, and the damage done by insects, raccoons, and other rodents such as neighborhood kids.

    As long as you respect dormancy when winter roles around, I don't see any problem with growing these plants under artificial lighting.

    -Hermes.
    "The grass withers, the flower fades. But the word of our God stands forever." (Isaiah 40:8)

    My Grow List Updated Oct 22/2010.

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    Tastes like chicken! Exo's Avatar
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    I have been taking all of my flytraps and sarracenia out of dormancy around valentines day for two years and growing them under my 8 bulb T5 for a couple of months until the weather gets warmer. So far they have always had nice color (Not like sunlight, but still pretty good) and they even flower. Sun is best, but lights can work well too, I think it is just a matter of light output.
    Some days it just isn't worth chewing thru the restraints.

    My growlist: http://www.terraforums.com/forums/sh...255#post961255

    Video of my birth http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Xc5wIpUenQ

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    ermahgerd petmantis's Avatar
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    http://www.forbesconrad.com/gallerie...77-750x414.jpg

    This has to be the neatest photo of S. rosea I've ever seen. Many times plants grown indoors can only be this nice - virtually no ''accidents'' like birds, raccoons, or bugs munching away on leaves, no thunderstorms and hailstorms to destroy newly-formed pitchers and flowers, etc etc. The controlled environment (granted, less light) is favorable for shorter plants, but not for tall ones.

    And then again, light is only 1 factor of how nice a plant looks! I've grown VFTs outside in full sun, and never had as colorful traps as I did while growing them in a terrarium, with lower light. Weird, isn't it :P
    <Heli> How are you guys losing your hamatas?
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    Tastes like chicken! Exo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by petmantis View Post
    http://www.forbesconrad.com/gallerie...77-750x414.jpg

    This has to be the neatest photo of S. rosea I've ever seen. Many times plants grown indoors can only be this nice - virtually no ''accidents'' like birds, raccoons, or bugs munching away on leaves, no thunderstorms and hailstorms to destroy newly-formed pitchers and flowers, etc etc. The controlled environment (granted, less light) is favorable for shorter plants, but not for tall ones.

    And then again, light is only 1 factor of how nice a plant looks! I've grown VFTs outside in full sun, and never had as colorful traps as I did while growing them in a terrarium, with lower light. Weird, isn't it :P
    .......S.rosea....that looks like my S.purpurea, or did I miss something?
    Some days it just isn't worth chewing thru the restraints.

    My growlist: http://www.terraforums.com/forums/sh...255#post961255

    Video of my birth http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Xc5wIpUenQ

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