Five Ways to Help Your Plants This Winter
As temperatures drop, it’s time to start thinking about how you’ll keep your grow room, and more importantly your plants, warm this winter. A cold snap can seriously damage and at times even kill your plants. Prepare your grow room and your setup, and you’ll minimise the negative side effects of winter chills. To make it even easier for you this winter, we've taken off 10% from everything in our Seasonal Selection - the discount will automatically be deducted at check out.
While your lights are on, you should be ideally looking to keep your room temperature between 25°C - 28°C, falling to a range of 18°C-21°C while your lights are off. When thinking about your room temperature, consider setting your "Lights On" period for during the night, when the room will naturally be the coolest, and your "Lights Off" period for during the day.
You should always keep a keen eye on the temperatures your grow room is reaching so you can act accordingly, but in the winter it's more important than ever. Installing a classic wall-mounted analogue thermometer (also available with a push button min/max option) is a cheap and easy way of giving yourself that constant reminder.
If you’ve just taken cuttings and are waiting for roots to show, or you’ve recently re-potted and roots are fresh and not yet fully developed, you should provide your plants with concentrated and focused heat to ensure their health. You can find this with heat mats or heated propagators.
Heat mats offer a barrier between your cold grow room floor and your pots, and provide a consistent warm environment for young plants to grow to their full potential. In the same way, propagators allow you to create the ideal environment for your plant in its own high-humidity atmosphere while roots develop and take hold.
It’s likely that you’ll need heaters to properly warm your grow room in the coldest winter months. There are several options available to you for heating units, many of which can be powered via a contactor to work in time with your lighting units. This way, when your lights are switched off and the temperature of the room consequently drops, the heater will be powered up and bring the room temperature back up. Contactors are available from Green Spirit in 4 way, 6 way and 8 way configurations.
Heating units are your friend in cold conditions. Most units are plug and play, and offer direct heat into your grow room. These units are easy to use, and will quickly kick out heat soon after being switched on and many times instantly.
Choose from a radiator style (both oil-free and oil-filled), a standard heater, and even tubular heaters which come in a range of sizes, and can be particularly cost-effective if your grow room is small.
Use The Appropriate Nutrients
If you’re looking to strengthen your plants’ tolerance to the cold as an extra measure, Heat from Vitalink will boost their resilience and is suitable for all grow systems and media. Ideally, Heat should be used in a preventative capacity, but if you notice that your plants have already begun to suffer from the cold, using it as a foliar spray may salvage them.
Vitalink say: “Heat contains betaines which act as osmoprotectans, these play an important role in plants, protecting them from the damage and stress caused by cold conditions. The presence of seaweed extract facilitates an early response in the plant to allow it to cope better with cold stress.”
Consider Your Nutrient and Water Temperature
Although you may be taking care to monitor and maintain the temperature of your grow room, it’s also just as important to keep an eye on the temperatures of your liquid nutrients. You should refer to individual products for their specific storage instructions, but be aware that nutrients should be kept consistently between 10°C - 19°C in a dry space away from direct sunlight. Temperatures lower than this may cause a breakdown of the beneficials within the nutrient.
When working with nutrient solutions and your water supply, consider using a water heater to monitor and warm up your liquids ready for use. Although you shouldn’t let your water temperature climb too high, between 18°C - 21°C should be ideal in most cases (as always, please feel free to check with a member of staff for advice best-suited to your plants and grow room set up).
At Green Spirit we're always more than happy to offer any assistance you may need, and point you in the right direction at either our Sheffield or Barnsley stores, or online.