Growing conditions forum: Hoyas that grow well under artificial lights

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Imagepropmaker
Apr 6, 2010 4:13 PM CST
Name: Dominic Murray
Lanzarote, Canary Islands

Anyone got any experience worth sharing over Hoyas which have grown well and flowered under artificial lights?
ImageHoyaDoug
Apr 7, 2010 7:10 AM CST
Name: Doug
Lamoille County, VT
All Hoyas grow well under artificial light if you provide the right type. Most of my experience comes from growing them under High Output t-5 fluorescent tubes which are around 1/2 inch in diameter and use 54 watts of electricity per tube. Regular fluorescents just don't have the necessary lumens to get results except with the smallest of Hoyas, and the bulbs must also almost be touching the plant. The High Output fixtures that I use will penetrate up to three feet into the canopy, and can also be hung vertically and used to side-light a really tall plant - I used this method to bloom my H. macgillivrayi.

I'm sure excellent results could also be achieved with HID lights like metal halide and high pressure sodium, but I have no personal experience with this type of light. I have been experimenting with LED plant lights, but the results are far from stellar. These lights will grow a powerfully long vine, but foliage growth is negligible. It will however do a nice job of maintaining a plant until you can get it back outside in the summer.

Another secret to doing well with artificial light is to maintain high humidity levels. I run a small whole house humidifier in my plant room continually in order to maintain proper humidity. The heat produced by many lights in the same room will dry the air much like a food dehydrator and will cause quick die back of all tender growth in no time. I try to maintain relative humidity in the 50-75% range.

Some of the Hoyas that I have bloomed under artificial light with no supplemental sunshine include: H. densifolia, H. kanyakumariana, H. lobbii, H. multiflora, H. pubicalyx, H. kenejiana, H. diversifolia, H. cumingiana, H.anulata,and H. lamingtoniae and H. lacunosa.

Another good idea in a plant room is to have good air circulation. To achieve this I run two fans 24/7. Photo is of H. kanyakumariana bloomed under artificial light.

Doug

Thumbnail by HoyaDoug

[Last edited Apr 7, 2010 6:19 PM CST]
Quote | Post #166404 (2)
ImageHoyaDoug
Apr 7, 2010 7:14 AM CST
Name: Doug
Lamoille County, VT
Hoya kenejiana blooming under artificial light.

Thumbnail by HoyaDoug

ImageJulieK
Feb 19, 2012 11:22 AM CST
Name: Julie Kennedy
UK
Hey Doug, I have had a facinating afternoon looking at your website ( Thumbs up ) and the great information you give on growing conditions!
One small question - your basement grow-tents, do you heat them? - or is it just the warmth from your artificial lights that provide the warmth?

Is that the same for your plant porch too - although I notice you allow heat from the house to circulate there too?
Thanks...just counting the losses this winter, and wondering how to do better next year!
Julie
ImageMyHoyas
Feb 19, 2012 12:39 PM CST
Name: Christina Karlsson
Sweden
In the short time I've been growing hoyas under grow lights I've had quite a few in bloom:
parvifolia
griffithii
nummularioides
polyneura
sp UT-009
'Rebecca'
and several more have buds right now. Smiling
ImageLauraCarnosa
Feb 19, 2012 12:51 PM CST
Name: Laura Gardiner
Manitoba, Canada
You can't 'un-ring' a bell.
I too, spent some time taking your summer and winter tours. I have to say, Doug, your operation there is amazing! I cannot believe the SCALE of your- um- for lack of a better term- grow operation!
Ever thought about going into business selling plants and/or cuttings? Turn your hobby into a business?

Back to topic:
My plants are in either south or east windows, and because of the winter daylight hours here, I also grow under T-5 lights, but more to supplement light than to solely provide. However, many of my cuttings are too small to flower.

A little surprise, tho', I rec'd a cut of H. leucorhoda in the fall, and have been growing it under the T-5s. Recently, it developed a peduncle, and actually has some buds developing..... Hurray!
"When you have only two pennies left in the world, buy a loaf of bread with one, and a lily with the other."
- Chinese Proverb
ImageJulieK
Feb 19, 2012 1:25 PM CST
Name: Julie Kennedy
UK
Laura /Christina - I'm so pleased to hear that you are both being successful with your grow lights. Do you provide extra heat aswell, or do the lights put out a lot of heat?
Thanks

-6c tonight - but predicted to be +17C by Friday CRAZY weather Confused
ImageMyHoyas
Feb 19, 2012 1:56 PM CST
Name: Christina Karlsson
Sweden
I have floor heating kept very low in my hoya room, but at night when the lights are off it gets quite cool there, but I think that cool nights might have something to do with my success in getting so many in bloom... During the days it's like tropical heat in there because of the lights. I have small windows there and they are often damp on the inside now that it's been so cold outside. I think I need to get a small fan in there to get the air moving...

I've had a greenii for quite some time now, 8 years in January, and I recently found a small peduncle in it. I don't know if it's because it's under the grow lights or if it would have grown a peduncle if still grown in a window. I also found one in rubida IML 1711 and I've had that one since 2006.

It costs quite a lot to have the lights and a few other things on down there, but the joy I've had since October when we're done fixing it up, makes it more than worth it! Smiling

Thumb of 2012-02-19/MyHoyas/562561
ImagePerennialgirl
Feb 19, 2012 2:58 PM CST
Name: Donna
Winnipeg, Manitoba Zone 4
Wow, Christina!! I want a room like that!
ImageHoyaDoug
Feb 20, 2012 6:43 AM CST
Name: Doug
Lamoille County, VT
Lovely room Christina- the best compliment I can give you is that I want it!

Julie, I had to give up on the basement grow tents - to cold down there! I did not heat them and they simply got to cold for the plants to grow well in. I moved one of the tents upstairs and the other one is not being used. The only way my basement would function as a growing area is I would have to build an insulated room and heat it at night, which would be a very expensive proposition. My plant porch is only heated from the heat that moves through there from the main house. I, like Laura, use a little T-5 light to supplement the meager Vermont sunshine in that room, but even a little makes a big difference. That room stays very warm from the pellet stove heat in the main house and never dips below 70°F or 21°C. It is however too dry for really active growth.

Laura, thanks for the kind words. No, I don't ever want to turn this hobby into a business. For me it would take all of the fun out of it! Although, there sure are days at work when I would rather be doing something else!

Doug
[Last edited Feb 20, 2012 6:46 AM CST]
Quote | Post #832031 (10)
ImageLauraCarnosa
Feb 20, 2012 3:16 PM CST
Name: Laura Gardiner
Manitoba, Canada
You can't 'un-ring' a bell.
Crying Too bad, Doug. 'Cause I know you'd be great. But you are correct, when a hobby becomes a job, it does suck the fun out of it!
"When you have only two pennies left in the world, buy a loaf of bread with one, and a lily with the other."
- Chinese Proverb
Iochroma
Feb 21, 2012 2:04 AM CST
Name: David
San Francisco Bay area
Those are some beautiful grow rooms Doug and Christina!

I totally agree with what Doug has said above. I love my T-5s. Yes to humidifiers, yes to fans, yes to constant feeding.

I would add that longer light periods can make up for lower light levels to some extent, so I leave my lights on for 16hrs a day.

I do heat my downstairs grow area to 70 deg. F. (21 C.) during the day in the cool part of the year. The actual leaf temperatures are much higher under the lights, but getting soil up to 70 is important I feel for good growth. Night temperatures drop down into the 50's for me; the alpine sp. love this, and the lowland ones tolerate it, I guess. Ideally, I would keep the lowland tropicals over 65 at night.

In my second under-lights garden (the current set-up) I have only had a few months of growing time. I do have buds developing on Hoya sheperdii, 'Mathilde', paziae, multiflora, javanica, davidcummingii, and good old 'DS 70'.

In the past I flowered quite a few species under lights. I would recommend the ones the others have mentioned above, and: rotundiflora ("sp. Square Leaf"), longifolia, 'Minibelle', 'Sheperdell', 'Chouke', thomsonii, serpens, ovovata x carnosa, fitchii, and of course, lacunosa in all her forms.
ImageJulieK
Feb 21, 2012 8:47 AM CST
Name: Julie Kennedy
UK
Thanks for all the info guys....very interesting. Guess I'd better start saving some ££ Smiling

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