Help me increase my humidity!

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kentuckiense

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Here's the deal. I'm at school in the dorms. I'm growing with an east window / fluorescent light combo setup. I've got the plants in humidity trays with a fan blowing on them most of the day. However, the dorm I'm in has air conditioning and I don't think there's any way I could convince my roommate to go without AC. Personally, I could do it for the sake of my plants. I'll never convince him, though. As you all know, AC air is mega dry. Do any of you know about any methods/contraptions that could help me increase the local humidity around my plants. I've got them in a nice little 'alcove' and they are pretty much walled off from everything else, so I think I could contain the humidity well enough. Any ideas?
 
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PHRAG

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I had a never ending fight with this until I enclosed my growing area. Is there a way for you to use plastic to make a small greenhouse type enclosure? You should be able to find a cheap roll of thin plastic like the type that people use to weather seal windows at any home improvement warehouse.
 

kentuckiense

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PHRAG said:
I had a never ending fight with this until I enclosed my growing area. Is there a way for you to use plastic to make a small greenhouse type enclosure? You should be able to find a cheap roll of thin plastic like the type that people use to weather seal windows at any home improvement warehouse.
Yes, that would actually be quite easy to do. Cheap, easy, and non permanent. I like.
 

silence882

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My recommendations!

Fans blowing just above, not on the plants. Winter air is actually drier than summer A/C air (humidity drops at lower temps). Air has to be moving, but freshness can be sacrificed a bit; I like the cheap-plastic recommendation.

--Stephen
 
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Jmoney

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I grow on windowsills (and a long time ago I did have plants in my dorms) and feel your pain. My biggest problem is in the spring/fall when I open the windows to cool the place down--humidity gets into the 20s/30s and humidifiers are useless with a good outside breeze. In the summer, I blast my AC for me, since I still put my comfort ahead of those of the plants. Even then, the humidity rarely drops below 40-45% and I'm ok with that--not ideal for orchids but acceptable. You can always section off an area with plastic, or run a few humidifiers at them, but a windowsill is not ideal conditions and I've learned to accept that. Too much work to make it ideal for me.
 
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nyorchids

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my humidity was around 40% with my metal halide and tried everything!! finally i found the answer!! a 10 jet ultrasonic fogger with a timer that goes on 7x a day for 5 minutes each time! it worked perfectly. and didnt mold anything or make the whole room a jungle here is a pic of it in action!
 

Ray

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The fan is probably helping dissipate the RH, what little the trays add, that is.

Trays do not work unless it's in an enclosed environment.
 
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lienluu

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How about a console humidifier? I had horrible indoor humidity problems until I got this thing. It was about 100.00 and keeps the humidity at about 60%.
 

kentuckiense

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lienluu said:
How about a console humidifier? I had horrible indoor humidity problems until I got this thing. It was about 100.00 and keeps the humidity at about 60%.
Yeah, I'll definitely have to explore that one, too. I think I'm first going to try the plastic sheeting and see how that works out. I'll probably need to supplement that somehow, though.
 
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lienluu

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There's an article in the last Orchid Digest written about apartment growing. The guy lives in Manhattan and grows (if i recall correctly) mostly mounted plants. If you want, I can scan the article for you.

The console humidifiers work great. And they work in large spaces (up to 1600 sq. ft.), unlike the small humidifiers which get drowned out unless they are in a tiny room.

My apartment is about 1500 sq. ft. and the console humidifier keeps the entire apartment at around 60%.
 

Rick

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I reccomended a big consule humidifier to Heather a ways back, and I think it worked pretty good. In my lab they work great in the test rooms as long as the doors are closed, so enclosure is esential too.

We have gone through long periods without mold, but eventually it kicks in and then its a mess. There are allot of paints out there with mold inhibitors in them that we repainted the walls in our test rooms with. So far no mold.

I also use foggers, misters, and swamp coolers. They all work well depending on how they are sized for the job and how much $ you want to spend. My preference would be by swamp cooler (which is realy just an un-enclosed consule humidifier), since they don't get spray everywhere.
 
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cdub

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Yo Zacharino,
Just crack open your window a bit buddy! The plants are next to the window, and it's 70% RH outside here in Virginia anyways! They'll love it!
 
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adiaphane

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I second the cheap plastic thing plus I'd recommend getting more filler plants to help raise humidity such as ferns as stuff. You know, cheap decoration plants.

Hey Lien, if you can, I would love a copy of that article you mentioned above.
 

Marco

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**bump

I think I need one of those ultra sonic foggers. I bought a humidifier and its a POS. I think it bumps up my humidity by like 2-3 % if im lucky
 
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cdub

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I can see how a fogger could help with humidity in smaller spaces like terrariums and such, but there is no way to efficiently contain the moisture in a larger space like your growing area Marco. I tried the fogger a while back, and didn't like it. It really bumped up my humidity, but only around a few plants near the fogger. And it was a ***** keeping up with the water level for the fogger.
 
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cdub

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Oh yeah and I recently was talking with Zach about the traditional "tray with pebbles" for increased humidity and I went out and outfitted my grow shelves with the trays and I am super impressed with the regular 75% RH during the day and slightly higher at night. I was unaware of the effectiveness of passive evaporation of the water from the trays. I'm diggin the pebbles.
 
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