After manufacturing high-quality horticultural lights for nearly 30 years, we have been fortunate enough to supply (and help) some of the nation’s favourite gardeners to make sure they get the most out of their plants.
Case in point: the national treasure that is Medwyn Williams of Anglesey. Thirteen times RHS Chelsea Gold medal winner and owner of countless other gardening accolades to boot, when it comes to growing the highest quality show-winning vegetables, there arguably isn´t a finer champion of the cause.
Being one of the more well-known gardening celebrities calling up our sales line, we decided to ask Medwyn to share a little about his experiences over the years and how he uses our different lighting fixtures to get the best harvest out of his greenhouses, and win multiple gold medals.
¨We started out using Maxibright T5 fluorescent type lighting on seedlings and probably around the same time began using metal halide and HPS lighting for supplementing natural daylight in our greenhouse.¨
¨Getting the best quality light in the run to show deadlines can be hard, so making sure endless cloudy days don´t get in the way plays a huge part in us being able to grow the best quality veg on time¨
Supplementing natural daylight on cloudy days is a long-standing practice in greenhouse horticulture. Nothing quite beats the reliability and affordability of tried-and-tested lighting like HPS and/or Metal Halide, but they do of course have a few newer contenders on the block.
Keen to keep on top of his gardening game, Medwyn is no stranger to the more recent Ceramic Metal Halide and LED DAYLIGHT fixtures. We wanted to pick his brains on how he has taken advantage of these lighting systems and what is getting him so excited about the LEDs
He began by recounting a woeful tale of carrots, during the first year of the Covid pandemic. The Chelsea Flower Show date changed completely switching up an entire year of planting times forcing Medwyn to approach things slightly differently.
¨Timing of crops is very important to us because of having to display everything on the Chelsea stand all at the same time, in the very best condition possible. Now of course, we had to replant everything and display completely out of the usual season¨
For Medwyn, this meant he needed to find a lighting solution for his prize-winning carrot variety that not only gave a nice and intense uniformity but importantly offered as full a spectrum of PAR lighting as possible in the absence of the normally required sunlight levels.
“We set up a large Budbox grow tent inside our polytunnel to make sure we could properly control the environment and then used a combination of the red and blue 315w DAYLIGHT horizon lights spread over the entire area. The 315w CDM lights worked wonders, they´ve got a really full spectrum which the plants loved and they allowed us to get a very even light coverage over the entire crop that meant every carrot was basically perfect.
“The carrots were literally some of the best we have ever grown and the heat from the lights kept the rest of the poly tunnel warm, which helped some of the other plants too. Then of course the re-scheduled Chelsea Flower show was also canceled, so we ended up just eating them all – they were delicious!¨
It must have been a hugely frustrating time, having done twice the normal amount of work in one year only to end up with both shows cancelled. Of course, the silver lining of that cloud is that you learn more about overcoming the various problems that were thrown up, and how DAYLIGHT lighting can provide many options for the discerning gardener. We asked Medwyn to let us know how he has been getting on with the most recent addition to his lighting toolbox, the DAYLIGHT LED fixtures.
¨We´ve been using the new LED´s and have been blown away. We´ve noticed a faster root development and in general a much better quality of plant from using them, we are definitely going to be expanding our use of them in the future.”
It is unsurprising to hear such good feedback on the DAYLIGHT LED lights. From the get-go, growers have been quick to see for themselves how well they work. What was more surprising, however, was some of the results Medwyn had seen in certain other scenarios.
¨We´ve even had some suprising results with simply germinating our onion seeds underneath them. It sounds unbelievable but underneath the 660W daylight, germination times were massively improved. Not something you´d normally consider with the seeds being under the soil surface¨
He further alluded to research that they are involved in with universities in a very mysterious and hush-hush way, but we are, of course, massively excited to see where using DAYLIGHT technology will take him and his plants in the future.
¨Plant lighting is a fascinating and complex subject so being able to rely on Maxibright and DAYLIGHT products means we can rely on our plants to win shows, but ultimately just grow to the best of their ability¨
We could not be happier to see the results Medwyn has achieved whilst making use of our technology and wish him all the best in his future endeavours. For more information on what they are up to, see their website https://medwynsofanglesey.co.uk
or follow Medwyn on Twitter @medwynsofangles