Hi guys- I am a new medical grower (just for one relative of mine), about 3 weeks into my first ever flowering. It’s just three Black Bettys in 5 gal pots of soil, which I allowed to veg for a pretty long time before beginning flowering. They are only about 2 ft tall, but all three are bushed out considerably wider than they are tall (thanks, LST Guide!!).
Here is my lighting situation; don’t worry I’ll get to the point shortly:
I used a home-built 3.5′ long array of fourteen 23w CFLs to veg them (which btw worked shockingly well, considering all the negative press they get- LST for bushing out is apparently the key). Now that they are large, though, it’s obvious that the CFL rig would be totally inadequate for bloomage.
So, over the last several weeks I, I managed to amass the following LEDs:
One cheap Chinese 90x1w UFO
One nice eLoofa 120w UFO with 3w chips
Two Blackstar 240w panels
(CFL is gone because it is now vegging the next round of babies in hydro tubs)
Like I said, these ladies are rather large, and I am not feeling like those 4 lights are really enough to make them reach their potential- anyone who has one of the Blackstars knows that they really only push about 140w, and I am not sure they are actually any brighter than the aforementioned 120w UFO. Also, the weather is much cooler now, and I will have to actually add a little heat to my grow tent- so what I am considering is adding a 400w HPS to the mix. Eventually I want more LEDs for when it warms up again, but meanwhile it would be dumb to spend the extra $$$ on LEDs and also run a damn heater.
Here is the rub: of course I will put the HPS up high, and I feel like it would be silly to also hang the LEDs up above the plants- since the LEDs need to be closer/lower, they would not only act as SHADE from the HPS, but also the LEDs would get cooked by it (surest way to make sure your LEDs do NOT last for the boasted 50,000hr). So I am imagining a scenario where the LEDs are somehow hung/mounted to face horizontally, looking at the sides of the plants.
Has anyone done this before? If so, I’d love any input on 1)how others have rigged this up, since the LEDs only have the factory hanging holes on the back/top, not the side, and 2) whether or not this even sounds worthwhile at all. Any other general advice for a newb with the combination of equipment and plants I mentioned would also be welcome. I realize that the HPS plus all four LEDs would probably approach overkill for 3 plants, even if they are really big, but if I can make my imagined setup work, I would want to use it for six plants next grow, since the state where I live allows me to have 6.