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Pinguicula in my basement (and some LED experience)

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Dear all,

I posted some pictures of tuberous drosera grown unter T5 or LED lights in january or so. I may have mentioned there, that I was not so happy about the results in my basement. As a consequence, I doubled the light intensity there, now ending up with 5 m LED stripes per shelf in mixtures of red/blue 2:1 and red/blue/white 5:2:1. Some other shelves had T5 bulbs (2 per shelf). In terms of energy use LEDs and T5 bulbs are now comparable (72 W vs. 78 W).

The plant habitus and also the colouration has improved considerably now. Please check yourself:

The two shelves in my basement:


comparing the LED colour mixes

P. acuminata


P. laueana SP1


A P. laueana SP3 under T5 bulbs for comparison to show the colouration which may be possible.


My general impression is that the 2:1 mixture overall gives better results, but just two months of time may be a bit short for that conclusion. In any case the plants look mostly happy and very healthy. Some even grow better under LED light compared to T5 (e.g. P. emarginata). This technology really has some potential, although I can not use these LED to save some electricity (and some money). Let's wait and see, what the next generation will do...

Now some more pictures showing some species or hybrids. The light conditions are given in brackets.

P. calderoniae (2:1)


P. conzattii (2:1)


P. elizabethiae (5:2:1)


P. emarginata red leaves (2:1)



P. gracilis x emarginata (5:2:1)



P. laueana CP2 (T5)


P. mirandae (T5)




P. martinezii (5:2:1)


Flower plant 1


Flower plant 2


P. orchidioides (2:1)


P. sp. Tehuacan (T5)



I hope you like them!


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Hi Paulo,

the substrates are mixes of mostly inorganic ingredients and about 10 % peat. The inorganic components are fine (~1 mm) and coarse (2-3 mm) sand, seramis, vermiculite, in older mixes also perlite, some granulated limestone. Maybe also some other components. The main purpose is to have a well draining mix which does not form a brick when getting dry. It does not really seem to matter which ingredient is used in which quantity as the pinguicula do not seem to care very much.

Best regards


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Amazing plants and very interesting results with the leds. Just two questions - the ratio means number of leds (2:1 = 2 red chips and 1 blue chip?), the light output of the leds or their wattage? If i get it right, it should be number of leds, but i want to be sure. Do you know the leds wavelengths? I would like to try it too soon :-)


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It would be interesting to know if the wattage is sum of LEDs rated power or actual measured power consumption (with a meter) same for the flourescents.

Florescents often use more power due to losses in the ballast (eg 20w light would actually use 25w) and LEDs have traditionally been rated by max power consumption rather than actual, eg a 90 watt led fixture often only consumed 50-70w as the LED driver was undersized to extend LED life.

Hence the measured power consumption would be really usefull for the comparison.

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