LED growing 2015

Swiss chard
Swiss chard

What else could I be writing about in this weather?  As I write, all I can see out of my basement windows is the snow.  I started the usual lettuces and a couple of greens for the new year.  My “big” experiment is Swiss chard.  I was sure I could get them to micro green size and maybe even baby green size – done.  I really would like to get them big enough for cooking.  I wasn’t, and I’m still not sure how much room their roots need to get to maturity.

The leaves started quite rounded on long, thin stems, and the bigger ones are still not as elongated as I’d like to see, using what I’ve grown in the garden as a comparison.  But I could start cooking with these if I really wanted to do so.

Today, I did what I’ve been planning to do for awhile and put some of the crop into small pots to see what effect more root space might have.  We’ll see.

arugula and mizuna

Last trial with arugula failed; because of fungus gnats, I think.  (The arugula is the rounder leaf at the front of the flat in the picture above.  The spikier leaves in the back are mizuna.) This trial is looking good except I expected these leaves to be more elongated, too and deeply lobed.  They are quite hot; I should probably harvest the bigger leaves this week.  I don’t know how they do for cut and come again; the mizuna in the back of the flat is great at that.

greens 2015

One flat of greens is going under the new LumiBar LED Strip Light and in the new environment; a sturdy shelving unit.  I should be able to consolidate my setup and move the other two lights under the shelf where this flat of greens sit but I want to start with a simple trial of this light. The red and the blue for this light are adjustable; when they are both at max, it shows a lot more blue than the older lights.  I’m leaving them at max because there’s no way of knowing what’s best for this exact mix and I’m not funded for trials!

new light setup