Cfl or Hps for flowering??

Discussion in 'Lighting' started by aceofspades941, Nov 25, 2011.

  1. Thanks for that input R, no one had sent me a post like that on GC haha, I really like the enthusiasm. Honestly I've been thinking more and more about a 250 watt or 400 hps, but see I live in an apt with my gf and I've done all the research about growing, and she gets freaked out when I start talking about adding 2 more cfls haha. I used the link to the electricity calculation page and it really doesn't seem like that much money, as you said is the case with your system R. My plants are still young though and my gf actually just started a better paying job today, so I'm optimistic that I can show her its not that big of a hit on the bill. And I definitely want to do my grow as much the right way as I can, yielding the highest quantity of the best quality I can within reason
  2. Rumple: it depends how much money you have to play with and who you're growing for. All I need to do is to keep my sugar bowl full and that doesn't justify a $200 electric bill. If you're trying to be the cannabis king of your neighborhood then that's another issue. It's amazing what some people are doing without raising the eyes of the Edison company's meter reader. Hank
  3. Hmmm is that so Hank? How big is your sugar bowl haha, Could you please give me an example of what you mean
  4. If all you need is a sugar bowl full of weed, then grow that much as fast as possible. Don't stretch it out to save on this months bill. Not only will a good grow lamp grow weed fast, the quality is much better.

    I can (so can you) get a pound of weed from a single 400 watt lamp in 70-80 days clone to harvest. It will cost me an extra $20 to $25 on each bill. No meter reader will ever notice. Your sugar bowl will be full for a long time doing it right.

    My single plant 400 watt broom closet grow. Photo take right now!:


  5. Impressive! Can you share a secret ? Those colas are really big!
  6. Ace: Different strokes for different folks. A couple of bowls a day when the pain gets pretty bad in my vaporizer keeps me off the prescribed codeine for pain. After my buds are cured I grind them and fill my sugar bowl that probably holds about two cups. At my present rate of use I figure I'm good until mid-January and then I'll have to start a new crop. One thing I don't want to get caught with is more than eight ounces. My state is pretty liberal with its regulation of M/J and I appreciate it. Hank
  7. Wow Rump that's a beautiful plant you've got there :) just the one with a 400 watt hps? It looks huge, I was planning on growing 2-4 plants and I could end up with a 400 watt by the time they reach flower, I also may do a smaller hps and use several cfls in conjunction. Hank, that does sound like a nice sized bowl and to be enjoying your own fine quality green for a couple months sounds even better, its encouraging to hear you get such nice yields :)
  8. Hank, how many plants do you grow at a time? And do you just use one 2 bulb fixture?
  9. Ace: I start out with 12 vegging that were started from seeds and when they're ready to flower I cut the number down to six. No I don't use a two tube fixture because they're too narrow even for my starter trays.

    My bubble tubs are 14" wide by almost 2' long. I have a four tube fixture four feet long that sufficiently lights up my six plants in the two bubble tubs set end to end. I wish I had bought the six tube fixture or even the eight because they're just a tad wider. They would overlap my grow and give me more flexibility. Hank
  10. Hmmm but you're able to get good results with the four tube fixture lighting six plants? How big do your plants get
  11. #31 Hank Alvarez, Dec 1, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 1, 2011
    Ace: I can understand a lot of the skepticism I get form you guys because I guess a lot of what I'm doing is unorthodox. I've been growing from the same seeds that I took out of a couple of joints a friend gave me as a wedding present about 27 years ago. There were two different strains in those hooters. One is a skinny Sativa and the others are bushy little Indicas that smell like skunk. I don't know how it is now but in those days when you bought off the street all that was guaranteed was that it was M/J. Few of us were connoisseurs in those days.

    At that time we were getting most of the M/J from Mexico and I was just glad that it wasn't sprayed with paraquat. I got an interesting mix of seeds out of those joints and I try to keep the strains going.

    The Sativas will typically reach about 30" to 36". The Indicas only get up to about 20". I prefer the Indica strain for pain relief but I won't look a gift horse in the mouth. A 60/40 mix of the two does the job for pain relief but it doesn't leave me as lethargic.

    Out of the dozen plants I veg in the two bubble tubs, ideally I try for four of the bushy little Indicas to two of the Sativas. It makes for an interesting angle on hanging the single 4' long four tube wide light fixture, but it works. Needless to say, if I got all Indicas I wouldn't complain but that's only happened once. I guess if I took better care in separating my seeds I could do a lot more.

    My method, as you can see, is pretty much by guess and by God with what I have to work with, but it's better than when I was growing with the Aerogardens and it works for me.

    My four tube T-5 fixture is four feet long and almost 15" wide. I bought a 2' by 4' grow tent but what I got is actually almost 2 1/2' deep by almost 4 1/2 feet wide and 6 1/2' tall. My fixture covers my two bubble tubs nicely when they're lined up end to end under it. I can't put them side by side because the fixture is too narrow. If I had bought a six or eight tube fixture I'd have a lot more flexibility as to how I could arrange my garden.

    As far as the results are concerned, I haven't weighed my finished product in years but it has kept my sugar bowl full and I haven't had to take the prescribed codeine for the pain in my, lower back and neck, the three artificial joints I have, the arthritis in the rest of my body or my gout for almost four years. What I grow may not be as pretty as what you see in "HIGH TIMES" but it works for me and it's a hell of a lot cheaper than the stuff I bought at the dispensary. My stuff works just as well and it's not as harsh if you do smoke it. I rarely do that because of a problem I had with bronchitis a few years ago but my vaporizer solved that.

    I like to see what you guys are doing and if what I'm up to helps anyone I'm happy. Thanks, Hank
  12. Wow that's awesome you've been growing from the same seeds for so long! Have you noticed any changes in your plants' behavior over the years? And if you had a six or eight tube fixture, do you think you would grow a couple more plants or just use more light on the same plants
  13. Ace: Over the years I've gone from a rack of T-8's hanging in a shop light fixture in a cabinet in the garage growing in dirt to my Aerogardens, which is a story all by itself. My present set up is the 2' by 4' tent that I pestered everybody about here before I bought it. They gave me good advice and I'm grateful.

    I've seen a lot of changes over the years. Mostly it's been due to lighting and better nutrients. My M/J plants have gotten bigger and more predictable and I haven't had to buy any meds or taken codeine for a while.

    I wouldn't grow more plants than the legal limit of twelve vegging or six flowering because I don't want to spend the few years I may have left in a cage eating protein patties with a plastic spoon with a roommate named Bubba.

    Six plants do it for me. If I was growing more it would be for the local cooperative because they're really nice folks and I believe in what they're doing but frankly they're under too much scrutiny right now. I'm hoping that will change in the coming year. We're going to try again to legalize M/J in 2012.

    When I'm not growing my meds I have a hell of an inside vegetable garden that feeds my other operations. Generally, Outside, it's too hot in the summer and too cold in the winter. I do best in the fall and the spring. Who says there's no such thing as global warming?

    Right now in the interim I have a tent full of potted: sweet globe basil, bok choi, broccoli, Swiss chards, spinach, Fresno peppers, mild jalapenos, big rainbow tomatoes, jubilee tomatoes, rosemary and sugar crunch cucumbers. I'm also trying some raspberries from seeds I recovered from my outside berry patch last year.

    I start them in my tent in the house where I can control their environment and then they go into my little 6' by 8' hobby green house out back. Some will stay there and others will out grow it and go into my dirt garden in the back yard. Like I tell my friends, "If I can't eat it or smoke it I'll be damned be damned if I'm going bust my ass to grow it." A wider six or eight tube fixture 4' long would allow me greater flexibility in my tent and let's face it T-5's are cheap to run. I could grow wall to wall. I know a lot of guys would like to do that with M/J but I don't need to. Hank
  14. You need to see what your power company charges per kw/ hr to calculate the cost multiply the bulb wattage x hours of operation and divide it by 1000 the figure u come up with is the number of kilowatt hours of electricity used. For instance where I live in Washington it's 4 cents per kilowatt and I use 4 ,000 watts for my flower room so every day I use 48 kw which means its costs me a 1.92 a day x 30 days comes out to $57.60 a month to operate. Just figure out your budget to pay off to help u decide what's best , if your power is cheap like here in the northwest than your ok , unlike a buddy of mine that's pays 26 cents a kw wow lol well I hope this helps your decision out look at your power bill
  15. Payton: Been there done that with the Edison Company. Unfortunately in So. Cal., like everything else, electricity is not cheap. Last summer we considered going solar but with the kids gone our energy consumption isn't enough to make it pay for itself for a long, long time. As I recall, the pay back would have been about fourteen or fifteen years.

    I go mostly by what my friends are doing and they're all growing commercially using ventilated and air conditioned HID lighting. But then for them that's a business expense because that's how they're making their livings since their jobs went into the crapper with the economy.

    So far I'm happy with my choice of T-5's. For a hobby gardener, regardless of the reason you're growing, if you're living on a pension like me you have to keep your fixed costs down or it can become a very expensive hobby.

    I've been approached by the local co-op to grow for them. If we get legalization passed next year, and I'll work for it but I'm not holding my breath, I wouldn't be against investing in a bigger tent to increase the size of my operation. I figure a larger grow room for cloning and vegging and flowering in my 2' by 4' tent would make sense. I'm sure I would want to use HID or HPS for flowering. But for now, the T-5's in my little tent fulfill all my personal medication needs and as I told Ace, "Since I taught my wife to turn off the light switch and the TV when she leaves the room I haven't even noticed my energy cost." Hank
  16. #36 aceofspades941, Dec 2, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 2, 2011
    Hank, have you ever posted any pictures on here of plants you have grown?
    Id be interested in seeing them if you had haha
  17. Ace: I tried to. I even bought a new GE digital camera after some son of a bitch stole my pickup with my 35 mm Cannon film camera in it. It was inside my emergency tool box behind the seat out of view. They found the stripped truck body in an orange orchard a month later.

    I'm half blind so even with my new camera my pictures still come out crappy. I never was a good photographer but I'll try again. Maybe a friend can help me document my next grow. Right now it's legal vegetables and herbs until my sugar bowl gets low. Hank
  18. Ohh well that would be nice to see pictures but it isn't neccessary for you to do that on my behalf, I was just curious in case you already had some on here.
    I'm sure that I want to increase my wattage during the flowering cycle, but I'm still not sure if I should go with one 400 watt hps setup or a 150-250 watt hps with 6-8 cfls as supplemental lighting. Still thinking it over, and I don't need to make a final decision for another month or so
  19. Ace: I've gone seed to harvest with my T'5's and I have no complaints. You might want to try it first and then if you really have to do it, try a flowering cycle with a HPS or HID. I haven't had the need so far. If you do it please keep us posted. Hank
  20. You use the same one fixture of 4 t5 bulbs from seed to harvest? Do you remember any approximate number in weight for 6 or so of your plants whenever you were last calculating?
    I just want the end result to come out good, I want to give my best effort if I'm going to do this. I plan on having enough money within the next month to buy at least a 150 hps, hopefully a 250 or 400, but at first I was totally going all cfl and didn't want to mess with HID so I'm still really curious to know about your success with t5s

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