FlytrapCare Carnivorous Plant Forums

Sponsored by

Discussions about fluorescent, LED and other types of grow lighting for Venus Flytraps and other plants

Moderator: Matt

By Veronis
Posts:  2202
Joined:  Fri May 29, 2009 8:41 pm
I agree with your points, but not wattage equivalent. Bulb wattage and lumens are important as it helps us determine efficiency. Equivalent wattage to incandescent bulbs is just for marketing.

If a fluorescent bulb, for example, is 200W, and is 15,000 lumens, its lumens per watt (LPW) is 75: 15000/200 = 75. You want this number as close to 100 as possible, although some lights like Sun God's Mini Lotus can go higher than 100.

Bulbs with a LPW of 50 will still work, and many work very well, but there is a lot of wasted energy there (bulbs like this suck up the same power as the bulb next to it but just don't output as much light). I try to stick with bulbs that are ~70+ LPW.

At any rate, this is why the "wattage equivalent" isn't useful - it doesn't really tell us anything relating to bulb effectiveness.

Lumens, Color temp, and wattage are the three main items needed.

Heat temperature has a ton of variables such as room's ambient temp, how tight the enclosure is, whether there's a fan, etc. I generally start at 12 inches with higher-intensity bulbs (fluorescent, not 400W HPS or anything) and work my way in. If it's close enough that you can really feel the heat on the soil surface, it's probably too close.

Since you're in research mode, here are a couple threads that you may find useful: ... ml#p144568 ... ml#p153234
Veronis, Veronis liked this
By cpbobby
Posts:  170
Joined:  Wed Oct 03, 2012 9:42 am
I use 2 2ft PL55 t5HO bulbs, there are 2 tubes to a bulb so actually it is 4 tubes in a fixture with a reflector(100w). produces 10,000 lumens, is on for 12h a day and my lowland neps seem to adore it. umm for the colder months I just use a 13w or 23w compact florescent for the african sundews I have. think it is 4,000 lumens and it is left on for 14-16h a day. I have to get the bulb pretty close to the plants. It isn't what they prefer but better then leaving them outside and once mid march gets here it will not matter bc they will go back to the good ole sunshine.

I want to move to LED but still want to wait until it gets more mainstream(cheaper and more effective)....bc one has to do alot of research themselves and if you aren't thorough you can end up spending more, using just as much power as a florescent system and not be as effective.
By cyph3r_gfy
Posts:  890
Joined:  Mon Aug 20, 2012 6:04 pm
Well, really depends. Blues are for vegetative growth... so if that's your goal, I say go for it. If you want to help promote flowering, you will need some reds. It is certainly a cheap LED, that gives a large coverage area at pretty tall distance (24" away).

This one, around the same price and from the same site, gives less coverage (they recommend 1 panel per sq ft) but covers all your spectrums at a shorter distance from your plants (2-4inches). ... 01quad.htm

Like said... it really depends.
By muzika
Posts:  23
Joined:  Sat Jul 20, 2013 2:27 pm
Hi guys! I did create on the VFT questions sub forum about a suitable grow light but I need to ask a seperate question so I thought I should post it here in the correct thread instead.

Well I have one of these old beam lights like this one.

Since I have no use for them anymore thought about "recycling" them and using them instead for artificial plant lighting.

So just wanna ask how many plants do you think can it support if I diffuse it's light?

to give an example of how bright it is if pointed out up in the sky it could practically reach the clouds and when pointed in a thundercloud it could basically make the cloud glow.
By Sander
Posts:  1226
Joined:  Thu Nov 29, 2012 6:29 pm
200w is a lot, but does not say anything about how much (for all we know it could be 1w) can be used by the plants, so i need the exact type of the lamp, i found its a R5 lamp, but could not find a specific type or datasheet for "philips r5".
(generally its hard to find a spectral distribution chart for philips lamps)
By Sander
Posts:  1226
Joined:  Thu Nov 29, 2012 6:29 pm
Should be enough for a single venus fly trap (vft), can u tell us some more, like color temperature/lumens, t5, t8, compact fluorescent?
User avatar
By PiranhaPlanter
Posts:  262
Joined:  Thu Feb 27, 2014 11:08 am
I chose a Phillips impact fluorescent spiral bulb that only uses 42 watts but produces 150. Also produces 2600 lumens and it's a daylight. And I put it in a swinging desk lamp.

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
By Sander
Posts:  1226
Joined:  Thu Nov 29, 2012 6:29 pm
That looks fine, yet be carefull with the dome for 2 reasons:
Stagnant air can lead to mold, which kills seeds and seedlings quite easily.
Temperature, the dome will act as a greenhouse and may become to warm.
User avatar
By PiranhaPlanter
Posts:  262
Joined:  Thu Feb 27, 2014 11:08 am
I ended up actually taking the dome off and using cling wrap with holes around the top and lifted a corner for air movement

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
By DavidC
Posts:  15
Joined:  Thu Jul 29, 2010 8:10 pm
Havent visited this site for some time, I'am building a LED lighting unit for the fun of it. 6 Blue & 2 red on a 150mm square
heat sink each led is around 150lm the power is from a 15volt psu as the leds are 6 & 9 volt ( 6+9) and 10watt resistors to drop the voltage, as there is a change in lhe light output we are installing a fully dimmable circuit,---you cant dim a led--its on or its off? can if you build a pwm unit so far the monies are about £20.00, Only building this to have some fun with the VFT's I bought for £1.00 EACH....if any one is building one please be aware that the led solder connections are gold.
User avatar
By VenusDoll
Posts:  49
Joined:  Tue Jul 22, 2014 11:14 pm
Ok so I have a ten gallon partially covered terrarium with D. Capensis, D. Tokeinsis x Rotundifolia, unknown drosera seedlings, and sphagnum moss. Is this CFL ok to use with my ten gallon? One of the photos includes voltage, wattage, etc. I read some great reviews about this bulb before I purchased it
ImageUploadedByTapatalk1406920339.233462.jpg (77.35 KiB) Viewed 10886 times
ImageUploadedByTapatalk1406920296.048576.jpg (81.85 KiB) Viewed 10886 times
ImageUploadedByTapatalk1406920259.026966.jpg (62.37 KiB) Viewed 10886 times

So depending how fresh your seeds were, that may […]

One, two, three, clone

When I want to make sure I have back up for plan[…]

Received. Going in to cold strat now. I Thank you![…]

Received. Going in to cold strat now. I thank you […]

My sundew isn’t eating!

Ok thank you! There seems to be a lot of moss de[…]

I stumbled upon " Windowsill Nepenthes" […]

Top Dress Moss

Sphagnum is the only live moss that I would trust.[…]

I knew it was too good to be true! There is one or[…]

Support the community - Shop at!