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Which light bulbs ?

Posted by kelp 6 (My Page) on
Fri, Feb 12, 10 at 14:23

I received a Baker Creek Heirloom Seed catalog from my daughter,and decided to give vegetable gardening a try this year. (I usually just garden for wildlife.) I'm back from shopping for lights for the seedlings. Empty handed. What is the difference between the bulbs labeled T5,T8, and T12? I saw some labeled "for plants and aquariums", some labeled "sunshine", and some labeled "full-spectrum". Which are best? Thanks in advance.

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Which light bulbs ?

T5, T8 and T12 refer to the size of the lamp (bulb)- the number after the "T" is how many eighths of an inch the lamp's diameter is. T5 is 5/8" DIA, T8 is 1" and T12 is 1.5." Size does not matter, just make sure the lamps will work in your fixture. I have had a setup for several years, used different types, and had success with all. Good luck!

RE: Which light bulbs ?

Learned something today! : ) Thank you. : )

RE: Which light bulbs ?

Agree with above, and throw in that I usually get the cheapest version of the highest wattage bulb that my fixture allows, which is 40 watts. Sometimes you have to hunt a bit, it seems like there are a million different bulbs, but you should be able to find some pretty cheap; my Home Depot has 40 watt T12 bulbs for around $4 for a pair of bulbs.

RE: Which light bulbs ?

T12 bulbs are getting phased out, only to be replaced by T8 and T5. The is also a number on the bulb: example SP41 and that is a cool white and a SP35 is the warm white. The SP41 is the better light for plants. There is also a daylight bulb which is more of a SP50 (guessing on the number), but is more costly but better than the previous mentioned. I use T8, SP41 bulbs and my plants do well with them.

RE: Which light bulbs ?

I mail order a lot of things but fragile tubes are definatly a pick up locally item

If you are starting out simple and easy a 4 foot shop light can be had very cheap

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