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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey all,
I have been taking a bunch of cuttings recently and am having some success. I am just wondering what the best photoperiod for cuttings is. I have heard/read that 12 hours with an equal dark period is best, but have also heard/read that 16-18 hours on with a shorter dark period is better. Some people even say that 24 hours on with no dark period is best. Needless to say, the more I research the more confused I become. So plant people, what works best? I am working mainly with peperomias and pileas. Lighting on the main plant tank (20L) is a 24" dual T8 with 6500K bulbs and the secondary tank (20H) has 3 26 w CFLs at 6500K. Any suggestions are greatly appreciated.
Thanks in advance,
-Field
 

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18 hrs works well. More growth than 12 hrs and nearly same results as 24hrs but with less energy. I actually never give plants 24 hrs of light, it's not good for them. Everything needs a resting period
 

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In the world of "home hydroponics" there is the belief that 4 on, 4 off produces the best "yield". This is of course in a sealed box (closet), CO2 supplemention, intensely lit and what not.

Something about the usable energy capacity of the plant's chorophyll is used at the 4 hr point and needs to "re-charge" so-to-speak, after which the plant is diverting much more energy to flush free radicals and chemical oxidations rather than growth.

Whether it'd be worth the effort to go the expense and effort with our viv plant cuttings I do not know (kinda rather doubt it) but it would be an interesting experiment.
 

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I strongly suspect that different genera of plants will have different ideal photoperiods. The only way to really know is to do an experiment on each species you are working on, and that can get tedious.

I have had the best luck with cuttings in the greenhouse in late spring, which would be nearing the longest days. I don't know if that is really the trick. Usually cuttings root well when it is getting warmer, and less well in the winter when it is cooler. Bottom heat (propagation heat mats) may be more beneficial than worrying about photoperiod. I'd set the lights at 14-16 hours and get some heat mats.

Rob
 

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Field the lights are an issue but make sure you are using blue spectrum lights to enhance the growth. Many lights are equipped with a red spectrum that pushes blooming and this will slow any growth you have hopes for. I can help you out with some ideas on a small easy hands off setups for cuttings if you like.
Even with the natural light right now the sun is producing more red spectrum this time of the year.
Michael
 
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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Hey Michael,
I may be wrong on the 20L lights rating, the light is really blue. The cfl's on the 20gal backup grow tank are 6500k and more reddish. I have noticed that the plants (especially pilea) grow much more slowly in that tank. I actually like being a little hands-on with the plants (I think my dads daily obsession with his bonsai rubbed off on me), but I am very interested in suggestions for good inexpensive grow lights.
Thanks (again),
-Field
 

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I strongly suspect that different genera of plants will have different ideal photoperiods. The only way to really know is to do an experiment on each species you are working on, and that can get tedious.

I have had the best luck with cuttings in the greenhouse in late spring, which would be nearing the longest days. I don't know if that is really the trick. Usually cuttings root well when it is getting warmer, and less well in the winter when it is cooler. Bottom heat (propagation heat mats) may be more beneficial than worrying about photoperiod. I'd set the lights at 14-16 hours and get some heat mats.

Rob
something to consider

Crassulacean acid metabolism - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
 
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