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How far away should a indoor growlamp be from Basil

Hello, im kind of new to growing basil or any kind of plants/veg/herb. i was using another forum to learn but its dead and inactive. so i was hoping i would be able to get proper answer here.

is 15-20 Cm close enough for basil to grow without becomming leggy using a 6400K growlamp or should it be more far away?

Because i noticed some color change on some of the leafs and it was at around 12Cm from the soil.

i dont want them to become leggy and i dont wanna burn the leafs so what is correct lenght from the soil to lamp.


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  • ObelixxObelixx Vendée, Western FrancePosts: 22,270
    I'm not convinced your problem is the grow lights.  I suspect it's more a case of sowing too densely and you may need to consider pricking some out and potting on to thin the plants so they can grow well.

    Everything I've ever seen about grow lights indicates you start seeds off with the lights about 2 to 4" away and gradually raise the height as the seedlings grow till you get your plants to a size where they can be grown on in natural light in the garden or a greenhouse, depending on your crop.    
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • Obelixx said:
    I'm not convinced your problem is the grow lights.  I suspect it's more a case of sowing too densely and you may need to consider pricking some out and potting on to thin the plants so they can grow well.

    Everything I've ever seen about grow lights indicates you start seeds off with the lights about 2 to 4" away and gradually raise the height as the seedlings grow till you get your plants to a size where they can be grown on in natural light in the garden or a greenhouse, depending on your crop.    
    i have no possibility to grow outside as i live in norway and there is really not much sun and there is about 10C outside and will get much colder very soon. so my only option is indoor growing. i started as seeds and had it as 12 cm from seed to lamp. now i moved it to about 20cm up.

    The grow lights im using are supposed to be for basil, i even asked the shop owner before i bough it, so the light shouldnt be a issue. but look at the red markers i put on the first picture, doesnt it look like its about to get burned or can it be something else?
  • ObelixxObelixx Vendée, Western FrancePosts: 22,270
    If the room you're using is warm enough to grow basil then you can raise you lights higher to avoid any burning but I still think you have too many seedlings in there and they are squished for space and nutrients and water and it will only get worse.
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • Pete.8Pete.8 Billericay, EssexPosts: 6,110
    I agree with Obelixx that they are sown too densley and need pricking out asap.
    The markings on the leaves are because they are all too close and competing with each other.

    I've had a look at your lamp and I believe it uses T5 flourescent tubes?

    Again as Obelixx mentions, probably about 4-6" above the plant tops will be fine.
    Hold your hand 4-6" below the lamp for 30 seconds, so long as your hand is just warm, it's good.


    Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit.
    Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
  • edited 26 August
    Obelixx said:
    If the room you're using is warm enough to grow basil then you can raise you lights higher to avoid any burning but I still think you have too many seedlings in there and they are squished for space and nutrients and water and it will only get worse.
    Im using a heater to keep the temprature at 22-25C atm and ive ordered a heating cable/mat il use under the pot. i followed this norwegian guide of youtube and he seems to have like 200 seedlings in a pot and did it all good https://youtu.be/KVS2wjoOnDY?t=535 the temprature in the soil is atm 23C. the room im using have only a ventilation and no windows and is a small storage room so it shouldnt be a problem to keep it warm. i moved the lamp to about 20Cm above the soil, would that work until the basil grows and become bigger? the setup makes so there is no problem in changing height, i have a chain hooked to the roof, so i can just change the lenght anytime.

    So if i have heat and the lamp at 20Cm height, then the basil wont become leggy for now? 


  • Pete.8 said:
    I agree with Obelixx that they are sown too densley and need pricking out asap.
    The markings on the leaves are because they are all too close and competing with each other.

    I've had a look at your lamp and I believe it uses T5 flourescent tubes?

    Again as Obelixx mentions, probably about 4-6" above the plant tops will be fine.
    Hold your hand 4-6" below the lamp for 30 seconds, so long as your hand is just warm, it's good.


    so il have to rip out some seedlings from it? they shouldnt need to compete i use auto water system pots and fertilized soil. and yeah im using T5 Flourescent tubes with reflector. when i hold my hand under i can feel a little bit warm, but not so warm that it hurts.
  • Pete.8Pete.8 Billericay, EssexPosts: 6,110
    I had a look at the YouTube vid - With so many seedlings you're going to get all sorts of  problems unless you're a very experienced grower. I wouldn't attempt to grow basil that way. I'd say failure is almost guaranteed

    I have about 8 basil plants - each one is about 2ft tall and about 1ft wide. I've been harvesting basil since June and they're still growing well.

    Learn how to grow it the traditional way first - then you'll have the experience to experiment based on knowledge.
    Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit.
    Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
  • Pete.8 said:
    I had a look at the YouTube vid - With so many seedlings you're going to get all sorts of  problems unless you're a very experienced grower. I wouldn't attempt to grow basil that way. I'd say failure is almost guaranteed

    I have about 8 basil plants - each one is about 2ft tall and about 1ft wide. I've been harvesting basil since June and they're still growing well.

    Learn how to grow it the traditional way first - then you'll have the experience to experiment based on knowledge.
    ok so to save this grow il have to rip some of the seedlings outoff the pot? like remove the entire basil + root until they get more space? how much do you think il have to remove for it to thrive as i really do need alot of basil. i make alot of asian food and due to covid theres so hard getting it. so i wanted to grow it myself so i dont have to pay alot of shipping fees. 
  • Pete.8Pete.8 Billericay, EssexPosts: 6,110
    With so many seedlings how is a proper root system going to develop for each plant?
    1 basil plant will fill a 2 litre pot with roots.

    They're so crowded you'll almost certainly get fungal disease which will wipe out the lot as there is no air flow between the plants.

    I'd suggest following the instructions on the packet - that's the method that has been proven to work for decades.
    Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit.
    Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
  • edited 26 August
    Pete.8 said:
    With so many seedlings how is a proper root system going to develop for each plant?
    1 basil plant will fill a 2 litre pot with roots.

    They're so crowded you'll almost certainly get fungal disease which will wipe out the lot as there is no air flow between the plants.

    I'd suggest following the instructions on the packet - that's the method that has been proven to work for decades.
    Whick packet? i have been following instructions on internet as there is no other instructions. i bough the seeds online, if there was a proper instruction for a newbeginner i would have followed it so do you have a proper one as i cant find a proper instruction its why im trying to ask on forums to get help.

    i bough a auto water system that should make so the basil gets water from underneath by their roots as i was told was the way basil liked to get watered, so they always get the kind of water they need, the soil is fertilized and according to the flower shop so will the fertilizer break down time by time to keep feeding the basil nutrients. its like small balls that breaks down with contact with water and light/heat. 

    I'm getting a fan delivered today, would that help to give the basil some artifical wind like outside and also help preventing fungal?
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