Hortilux Blue MH?

Has anyone here used the Hortilux Blue MH lamps?
I have a plant stand on a south side window, the only available window for it in this house. It gets decent sunlight from about September through mid-April, then it loses it.
I'm presenly using a dual F40T12 fixture to cover two shelves of gloxinias and one kalanchoe that someone gave me, but has never bloomed indoors due to the low light. The top shelf is doing ok but not the bottom.
I'm thinking of switching to a 150 watt MH lamp and fixture. I read at http://www.futuregarden.com/lighting/choosing_lamps.html that the Hortilux Blue is supposed to be really good, but do they make them in 150 watts? I don't think I need 400 watts, and all that expense, I can't afford it, just to cover a couple of plant stand shelves. ( a 4' long and maybe 14" wide area altogether )
Does Hortilux make the Blue MH in 150 watt?
Or other cost effective suggestions for me?
Thanks!
--
- Mama Bear

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Mama Bear wrote:

What kind of lamps do you have in the F40T12 fixtures? Especially in the bottom fixture. How old are the lamps?
I recommend changing the ballasts in your existing fixtures to electronic ballasts for F32T8 lamps. Try to get one with a ballast with a ballast factor (bf) greater than 1. Don't confuse this with the power factor, which you don't care about in this application. The new ballast will cost you about $20.
I've found that plants really like Philips ALTO 830 series F32T8 lamps, and they are cheap (like, $3 per lamp.) GE and Sylvania also make very similar lamps. The lamps should last over 20000 hours and unlike F40T12 lamps and MH lamps, they retain 90% of their brightness all the way to the end.
Bob
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I only have one fixture with 2 - 48" tubes. They're fairly new lamps. One is the purple kind of tube and the other is more like a Chroma 50. I don't want to have to take them out to look. But these things put out in the neighborhood of 2000 lumens each and a MH bulb, I understand, would be at least 4x that, even a 150 watt one?

I thought of that, but T8 tubes are hard to find in grow lights aren't they? Home Depot said all they had was FS T8's.

Still, I only have that one dual tube fixture hanging from the ceiling over the plant stand.
--
- Mama Bear

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Mama Bear wrote:

The 3000k lamps work great; about as good as grow lights.

I thought you meant you had one fixture *right over each shelf* (that's what I have and I start my peppers and tomatoes and flowers under them every year)
Bob
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No, I just have the one fixture period. :)
It would be cool to double the power and quadruple the light output, if I could do it relatively inexpensively. Like if I could get a Hortilux Blue MH in 150 watt, but I don't think they make them that small.
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wrote:

I've used a generic 400W metal Halide the last few years to start garden plants in the spring. As the bulb was getting old I went with a new Hortilux blue. I've never had such sturdy plants. The jump from flouresent to NH was huge, but this was a big jump too.
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Hey look at some of the prices on these things! http://shopping.msn.com/results/shp/?bcatidR60&av=2-4514268
$1,449,500.00
$2,199,500.00
A little pricey, eh? ;-)
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someone must be having trouble finding their decimal points, yes?
Deb

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