A “Cool” Way to Start Seeds

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20160125A.jpgTo grow seedlings under artificial lights (and the main season for starting seeds indoors begins soon, in March in the Northern Hemisphere), you don’t need to buy pricey bulbs. Fluorescent bulbs designed for horticulture are not only very expensive, but give off proportionately too much red light for seedlings, causing them to etiolate. Instead, try Cool White tubes. These are the least expensive on the market and give off more blue rays than red ones. That’s what gives them their cool appearance (their light has a cool bluish tinge) and it also keeps seedling compact, green and healthy!

Later, when you want to see the flower buds form, you can add a Warm White tube, reasonably priced and rich red rays, to the mix, but never horticultural tubes. And certainly for young seedlings, Cool White tubes are all you need!

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