Spider Mites, and T-8/T-12 bulbs
I had promised myself that I would behave - - but then someone has to bring
up Spider Mites, and here I go again! Hope you all forgive me. :-D
Two ways to get rid of Spider Mites (Actually, often called RedSpider Mites),
and the theory behind each way.
(1) Blast the little beasties off with a hard spray of water. (a) real
reason - they are very easy to knock off, and are not able to find their way
back. Water spray is very cheap, and non-toxic to either plants or fish. (b)
other reason - they are very social creatures, and die from a combination of
homesickness and boredom from having no one to talk to.
(2) Spray your plants with good Bourbon Whiskey, then after ten minutes,
sprinkle the plants with fine white sand. reason - They all get drunk, and
kill each other by throwing rocks.
The really goofy thing is, BOTH methods actually work.
((So sue me! I am a retired County Extension worker. (Remember "Green
Now, for Olga in Vancouver: You probably want rather ordinary 5,000K Rapid St
art T-8 bulbs - but NOT UNTIL YOU ARE READY TO REPLACE YOUR EXISTING T-12s!!
Yes, the T-8s will be brighter, but I think probably not enough more so to
justify replacing your existing bulbs _before their time._ The bulbs you
want are indeed available at Grainger for $7.59 each, and I got F32T8/SPX50
lamps, their item number 1G946, on Page 930 of their current catalog.
Wherever you look for T-8 lamps, look for the "Color Temperature" on the
description of the lamps. Lots of lamps have Color Temperatures around 3,500
degrees, which makes your room and furniture look really nice and mellow, and
makes your plants _look nice,_ but is sort of lousy for _growing plants._
5,000K is perfectly OK, but you can also get "Daylight," which is usually
6,500K and also usually a LOT more expensive. The emitting surface of our
"day star" is 5,000 degrees Kelvin, but atmospheric absorption and whatever
else the engineers and physicists take into consideration makes the "perfect"
fluorescent phosphors for duplicating Sunlight rated at 6,500K. Who knows?
Anyway, $7.59 plus tax beats the heck out of $40.00 per for similar beasties
at the local Pet Store.
Good luck on finding the desired bulbs without too much hassle!
(OK, maybe those were goofy ways to get rid of the mites, but darn it, they
really do work. :-) )