I want to build the small lettuce raft for a starter project. I know I will want to eventually try tomatoes, squash, different variety of peas and etc. So my question is what lighting would be best? Should I buy the T-5 lamps or go ahead and buy the HID conversion light kit yall supply? Would the HID work for lettuce or is it to hot? Any and all information would greatly be appreciated.
Answer from Stella/Simon:
Hmm, Stephen, good question!
Proper lighting for any significant hydroponics project can easily be the most expensive part of a set up. You may have noticed in our site that one of our favorite setups is a lettuce raft under T-5s beside a drain table using HID lamp above that. Both the T-5 and the HID lamp are pretty expensive, so I would say do not invest in them until you're pretty sure you want to set up a bigger and more advanced system for crop production.
A good compromise might be to buy a smaller (2 foot)T-5 lamp for a small lettuce raft just to get started and see how you like Hydro.
Ultimately, if you get serious about it, you will need the two big lamps described above. I just found a few 2-foot T-5 lamps (with bulbs) on ebay for under $100. You can later use this lamp to start your seedlings.
That is my suggestion to you, Stephen, I hate to suggest expensive purchases when you haven't even gotten your feet wet yet!
Hope this helps!
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