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Old 01-05-2014, 11:20 PM
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How to make your own bottom heat source for starting seeds


Hi everyone this is the second part of the 2014 Morning Glory grow out in which I will be showing you my own version of a homemade bottom heat source.

You don't have to be a part of the grow out to add comments or your own ideas for a bottom heat source. All comment and ideas are welcome

However you are most welcome to join in the grow out as well!~here is the link to the thread~Morning glory growout 2014 ~Instrest thread

Here are two links to how to make your own bottom heat source. I have combined the two together in my own version and have built something I think will work well.

http://homesteaderschool.com/growing...for-seedlings/

http://www.vegetablegardener.com/ite...-seed-starting

I liked the idea of the sand as it will hold the heat but I liked the rope lighting as it is waterproof.

First I went to Lowes to look for the incandescent rope lighting. Unfortunately it was not on sale and it only came in 8' or 24' lengths. I went ahead and bought the 24' length and decided to just make two containers as I will be starting a bunch of plants this year that can use the bottom heat.



Then I bought two sturdy shallow plastic containers. These are sturdy enough that I can move them and stack them when I don't need them anymore for the season.



I then bought a bag of playsand



Next I split up the sand into the two containers



This is my grow room, the lights are also from lowes and are shop lights I got for 10$ each. They have natural sunlight bulbs which I also bought there for 7$ for each packet of two. This is the second year now and they are still going strong.



Next I had to figure out how to make the rope lights lay flat on the sand. The rope lights come with little plastic brackets that you can screw into wood and such. But I really didn't feel like going thru all that work, so I came up with another idea. I had this old plastic front part of a filter that I just cut in half, one for each container. And it worked super great. Very easy, I just snapped on the plastic brackets where I wanted to tack down the rope lights.



Next I just snapped on the rope lights. I had to adjust it alittle to fit well in the containers but it only took a few minutes to readjust it all.



Then I put it all into the sand like so~



All lit up~and I can already tell it's gonna work great. It gives off an even cozy heat and the sand should help hold the heat so that I can turn off the lights every so often.



Now I had bought a plant heating mat on ebay for 28$, which was a good price and I will be using that also in another area. In total I spent 48$ to build my own, but as you can see I would have had to buy three of the regular heating mats to cover as much space as these cover. The 8' rope lights were 8$ and would be fine to make just one of these.



It took me about an hour to put it all together and was very easy~
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Old 01-06-2014, 07:05 AM
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Gosh Fearadyn.. you rock! Just amazing! Can't wait to get started! MWAH!
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Old 01-06-2014, 08:51 AM
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Just love your set up. The plants should well if not from the warmth created, they will love the ambiance that they create.

I do not have photo's of my existing set-up (disassembled).
I had a old Waterbed heat mat that I saved and made a set up similar fearadyn.
Used styrofoam around outside and lined with plastic, then sand as you have.
It fits 5 seed flats,, then built a hoop house over it with plastic covering.
The side rolls up.
Wonderful.
RC
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Old 01-06-2014, 09:47 AM
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Love it! Is there any danger of heat buildup and melting the plastic sides eventually ? Or where the light goes in ?
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Old 01-06-2014, 11:26 AM
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Well done girl! Well done! I'm still using my old heating pads.
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Old 01-06-2014, 12:01 PM
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That's awesome? Thanks for sharing.
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Old 01-06-2014, 12:57 PM
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Thanks guys!!

Yea RC I have heard of using old waterbed heaters. I wonder if anyone could find them on Ebay? Sounds like it worked super well!

Great question! No I don't think there is danger of it getting too hot, the lights are made to stay an even low temp and they are sitting on top of the sand. The heat will go up and into the plant soil. I don't plan on covering the top as I will have the shop lights down close to the plants. Or it should work that way. This is my first time using one of these, so we will see

I think the biggest danger is that I will go crazy starting seeds and then find I have no place to keep them till I can put them out in spring! The plant room is pretty full. But I think the next thing I will be doing is taking out the tables in there and putting in some heavy duty shelving units~keep the projects coming! LOL
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Old 04-08-2015, 04:24 PM
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The heating pad you have won't work by itself? I know it is waterproof.
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Old 04-08-2015, 07:29 PM
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Hi there~well that heating pad I bought on ebay did not work as something was wrong with it. Won't do that again.
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Old 04-08-2015, 07:43 PM
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Smile


Feara
different question?
I bought a mock orange bush today at aldi grocery store.
Am I able to plant it now? Its a perennial
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Old 04-09-2015, 06:08 PM
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last year and the year before I used old heat blanket I got from goodwill worked great.
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Old 04-09-2015, 06:10 PM
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good to know thank you for the information
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Old 04-09-2015, 10:06 PM
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Hi guys! Bali, for sure go ahead and put that baby in the ground now~here is an article I just found for you about mock orange~this is a bush I want to get someday also~https://www.humeseeds.com/efm_o.htm

I love all the neat ideas people come up with for bottom heat
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Old 04-09-2015, 10:07 PM
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one day i am going to get mock orange also they are so lovely and smell so good
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Old 04-10-2015, 02:21 PM
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mock orange


zones 4-8 so yes it can go in.
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