Suburban Wildlife

Where we can watch and relate to wildlife in a suburban backyard.
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Friday, February 11, 2011

A Simple Lighting Setup

Where to start? Probably with the amount of light that African violets will thrive on. Winter sunlight is not enough. There is not enough, and a window is not always the best place.

Violets do best with at least twelve to sixteen hours of light a day. That’s far more than we can get through a window during the winter. It’s much easier to supply artificial light evenly for your violet. Normal tungsten bulbs are too hot. Violets prefer daytime temperatures below 78 degrees - and night temperatures above 60. Even the light from a single florescent desk lamp will work wonders if it’s placed just over the violet.

At present I’m trying a CFB placed about 14 inches above the single plant. It’s a warm daylight bulb with (approx) brightness of a 100 watt light bulb.

(It’s a Greenlite 23w/ELS 2700k bulb T2)
It runs cool enough so the plant is not being scorched. A timer turns the light on at 9:00 am, and off at 10:30 pm.

Next - Making watering and feeding easy!

Monday, February 7, 2011

My Assistant

It's a long story. I brought the violet outside for a quick series of natural daylight photographs. All to do with trying to find out why the camera sees the bloom as blue while I see it closer to magenta. Anyway - for the few minutes I was taking photos the Blackcap chickadees kept on flitting in - with no care at all for the stranger at the feeder. As for the color problem, I still don't have a clear answer. However it was an interesting experience. ATB!