torsdag 28 oktober 2010

Question by Erna, regarding light discussion.

Hiya Erna,

Erna asked me in an input which can be found in comments about what kind of light I use and perhaps even more, why?

Regarding light for plants. It is an issue that is well debated. And the gentlemen and ladies who are growing peppers have a difference of opinion when it comes to this subject. Lights for plants is and will never be a problem. That is if you have a lot of dollars in your backpocket and ready to invest some of them in a good light source.

If you like to have some form of echonomic thinking and also perhaps an enviromental thinking then a good suggestion will be to continue to read this pathetically large input.
I have chosen what kind of light I wanted to use for my plants with different aspects in my mind. Some key elements were important to me.

1) Plants will survive, adults as well as seedlings.

2) Echonomic factor.

3) Light therapy effect factor. Can light tubes used for plants be used for us humans?

4) Space and heat issues.

Plants will survive, adults as well as seedlings.

The fact that plant will survive both as adults as well as seedlings is without exaggeration probably the key element that is most important.If this plan is not fulfilled then we can kiss our precious hobby goodbye. I checked different pepper forums and went for 2*36 W light tubes that prooved to be sufficient. This was for seedlings and adults. I was not sure that it would be sufficient. But it prooved to be so.

Echonomic factor ( enviromental factor)

The echonomic factor can be important. Especially if your pockets are not overly stuffed with Dollar bills. While it can be so that some can create their own jungle with 600 W armatures. And maybe perhaps even design their own bizarre version of a tropical Amazonas in a snowy midwinter Sweden.  Then some of us will simply not go for these luxurious fantasy plans. That due to the fact that high electrical bills will not be justified. But also because the enviromental factor will perhaps inhibit the conception of a vast indoor greenery . Do you want to have a jungle indoors during winter, or do you just want the plants to survive through the winter for the coming season? I went for the latter. The electrical bill was taken care of as well as having the ability to be able to say to future children ” Uncle Salemsson thought of the enviroment as good as he could. And he was not exaggerating with the electric consumption.”

What I do know is that the actions of my life will be judged by my concious when I lay at deaths door one day. It is inevitable should it not be so that I change personality somehow. The enviromental principle is not something we can be socially fanatical about. But it is a principle. I am a man of principles. And therefor important to me and perhaps even more so for future generations. I guess it is enough for politics in this input.

Light Therapy effect factor

Light therapy effect is a fun part to investigate. I actually invested 8-10 hours investigating this issue. It ended with me making an unexpected visit to Karolinska Hospital in Huddinge near Stockholm. I knew they had a light therapy room. I explained to the nurse and doctor that I just wanted to see what kind of light tubes they were using. Were they some kind of ”magical” light tubes? The background was that I have tried light therapy some years ago because of winter weariness. The effect of light therapy on me was when I tried it that it felt like 2-3 cup of coffees. But a funny side effect was that I wanted to go down to the lake of Drevviken to see if the pikes were copulating. Something I usually do at spring if time allows it. I obtained such a need through this side effect even though it was in January. Which made me speculate wether one of  the possibilities was that it might be so that us humans ( subjective conclusion and should not be viewed as anything else but an opinion ) have some kind of Biowatch built within us. It felt like this Biowatch of mine was moving from deep midwinter to very early spring after the 8-9 th day of light therapy sessions. Though when you stopped going there the effect went away pretty fast. What I needed was the same type of light in my room and fulfil the fact that these light tubes are being useful for the plants. Huddinge Hospital light therapy room used 5500 K temperature light Tubes. The difference to that cave of light and my shady room is that they had like 24-30 light tubes while I have 2 of these. I let the enviromental and echonomical aspects be of a higher priority for me in my personal case. But it is possible I will buy another armature to replace my regular undesireable ceiling lamp.

Last year I did not felt any winter fatigue at all. I made an interpretation of my surrounding that year that a lot of other poor Stockholmers could have some trouble with winter fatigue. Though that was my interpretation of my own observation. I did not have that problem and will gladly try to continue to not to have it as a problem. As such, the method I used last winter before I will continue to use. I guess that growing peppers have a lot of good sides. This part in the input could be considered as the health part.

Space and heat is of course an issue.

People can create a jungle with as many lamps that is needed for such a cause. But question is if they wont get a heat problem. And maybe a space problem. Some will solve the problem of too much heat with having a heavy blowing fan. While that is one way of solving it. It is also a way of raising your electrical bill and using even more electric consumtion. The space problem is obvious and I will leave that subject.

My own conclusions lead to that I bought 2 *36 W light tubes having 6500 K ( they work good enough as a light therapeutical purpose if you use full day light spectrum). Its lumen were together like 7000-8000 Lumen ( can be read about here ). I know that I have checked what it was comparing to. If my memory dont fail me I think 100 000 lux ( 100 000 lumen/ m^2 ) is equivalent to a Swedish Summer day. With that said it means my light tubes are approximately like 1/12 of that.
All this lead to the fact that I bought an armature that did not emitt so much heat. 2 light tubes with 6500 K. The reason why I did not buy for example 4000 K light tubes is that I do not want to promote flowering purposes during winter season. I have no need of it. I just want my plants to be able to make sure it can produce energy for itself and not waste it on creating fruit. Focus should be, with poor light conditions, to maintain life in the plants. Other aspects are just plain hubris ( too weak of a joke attempt? Perhaps a sympathetic laugh at least? Moving on...)

A type of people that are very knowledgeable on this field happen to be, funny enough, the "Stoners". I read some forums. Their extensive detail descriptions about light for their precius cannabis plants surpass this input with an ease.

I hope this will answer some of your questions Eerna. Thanks for asking and stimulating my brain with questions.

Yours respectfully,

Michael Salemsson

onsdag 27 oktober 2010

The chiliblog

The blog have a bit less input due to the fact that it is low season. But also for the fact I have preseason training for the next mountaineering expeditions. It consumes some time and requires some rest afterward. I will soon be a good boy and make some interesting inputs. Also the studies is taking some time. Make that a lot of studies.

onsdag 13 oktober 2010

Stratification of Sequoiadendron Giganteum ( mammutträd på svenska)

Time to make it right this time. And time is the lead word for this post.
When it comes to growing up trees of the species Giant Redwood Tree ( ) from seeds a specific stratification period will be required. I did my reading this time. Here is some background. Apparently the Giant Redwood Tree requires a cold period imitating the winter months in its natural habitat. This means that to be able to unlock the genetic code of the seeds, and to see some sprouting, one method is to have the seeds in cold temperature for 1-2 month ( there are a lot of opinions regarding this issue and this post should not be viewed as the ultimate recipe for success).

( Giant Redwood Tree in Yosemite USA )
Now, this can be done in different ways.
Option one)
It is to have the seed in a small container with soil. This after having let the seeds soak in water for 24-48 hours. Then you put a plastic bag around the container so the moisture wont let go and put the container in the fridge. Optimal temperature is supposed to be around 1-3 Celsius degrees. For those of you in USA it is 32 + x*1,8. In which is x is 1 to 3 Celsius degrees. More about Anders Celsius can be read here  ( the cultural input taken care of with this link). Of course you have to make sure fungis do not take control of your precious treasure.

The second way. And the way I prefer it. It is to use the temperature of the season. Late Autumn is perfect for opening up the genetic lock of the Sequoia seeds. You do the same as above but put the container outside. The temperature will vary for sure. That is not an issue. But after you have let the container endure some cold for a month or two. You can take your precious container inside to imitate spring. The theory is that when the seeds feel the warmth after a LONG COLD period they will sprout. I confirmed this with my good friend James Bonet. We think this will be a good method. My regard to Milos, my job colleague for reminding me to make an input on this issue. Thanks Milos!

Now, you might ask yourself. " Michael, did you succeed with this method yourself?"
The answer to that is that I will know in 3-4 weeks.

onsdag 6 oktober 2010

Regarding sowing new seeds

I have been asked from some readers by mail to make an input about when to sow pepper plants seeds. While I must admit, I do not have much empirical data to fall upon, I could make some simple conclusions. The answer would be, that you can actually sow whenever you want. That is, if you have sufficient artificial light or natural light to support the seedlings with. I myself need to sow my seeds pretty early, late October, early November. This due to very poor light conditions ( poor Janne, Mats and Patrik that has read this sentence like thousands of times?). I want the plant to be fully ready for the outdoor life. In my case, it takes time. I am not sure this input really helped. But the general answer would be sow whenever you want if you feel comfortable with the fact that you can support your plant with light. If you are not that comfortable on your light conditions and have the weird situation that you decided to grow peppers on the same degree as Scandinavian latitude. Then you might want to use the advantage of the seasons.

 As you can see, I started my new season. Royal black, another ornamental. I sure hope it got some taste. I am looking for a good ornamental with good taste. I am open for suggestions from the readers regarding this issue.

By the way, I still dont know what this thing was that I found in the forrest when I was doing mushroom picking. I know that Janne teased me with the suggestion of "gränna polkagris". It does not bother me much not to know it. But when I look in my picture archive, it does!

I regret the fact that I did not dare to pick it up. But I had a very small wound and the neighbour daughter had a nose bleed that I attended to. I did not want to take any chances of touching something superpoisonous.

måndag 4 oktober 2010

The Piementa De Neyde is goodbye..

The Piementa De Neyde has been voted good bye. This due to space problem.
My first videoinput made by me. Hope you will enjoy it. Please make a comment if you liked the video or not. So I know if the readers want me to continue to make future videoinputs.

fredag 1 oktober 2010

Chile Pepper Eating varieties, give me suggestions!

My humble readers, I need your aid. Last year I grew about 15 chile pepper varieties. In which some were of superior culinary quality. I must admit, two to three of these varieties attracted my taste buds in a to me unpredictable pathological fashion.

After having thought of the situation, by trying to analyze what it was more specifically that I liked. I realized, there were some factors that was distinguishable.

1. Strength of the variety. Wether it is important for everyone or not is hard to say. But subjectively I find it important. With that I mean that I grow a pepper variety not only for the taste, but I want to feel some kind of heat. I quickly fell in love with some of the hottest varietes such as B. Jolokia, Naga Morich, Chocolate Scotch Bonnet. Not out of a masochistical behavioristical pattern. But simply, because I love the heat. Meaning, to use old terminology, I am a Chilehead.
2. Taste/Aroma, speaks for itself? This is where the complexity comes in. This is where I need my humble readers help. This factor differs. I need to know what you like. You do not need to motivate it even. I would be happy and honored if you also motivated though.
3. Characteristic, some varieties have different characteristics. Like the Chocolate Scotch Bonnet have a smokey, sweety flavour and spread out its heat differently then the B. Jolokia for example. This is important to me. Because that means I know more specifically how I can use the eating variety in the dishes.

Number two and three go hand in hand.

There are also other factors that can be interesting to take into consideration before growing a specific eating variety. How attractive is the plant/pods? How productive is it? During what conditions? How easy is it to get up from seed to fully productive plant?

The list can be made pretty long. If I stick to the three mentioned above, then I hope, or believe we have a good base.