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Using the best LED grow lights for indoor plants can greatly aid in proper plant growth.
Sunlight is the best form of lighting for plants for them to grow well.
But this can vary considerably based on season and region.
And if you want to grow plants indoors, you face additional challenges.
Growing plants indoors or in a greenhouse blocks a portion of the sunlight.
You may need a supplemental lighting for proper plant growth.
When you can’t get the optimal amount of light, you need to arrange for alternate growing lighting fixtures.
These artificial light fixtures provide enough light and the right kind of light, enabling plants to grow, flowers to bloom, and fruits to ripe optimally.
These lights are ideal for year-round growing inside your home.
- Why Plants Need the Best LED Grow Lights
Here’s how the ideal lighting systems can create a good environment for your blooms and vegetables to grow in health.
Table of Contents
Why Plants Need the Best LED Grow Lights
LED Grow lights, also referred to as specialized artificial lights, can boost plants’ growth and its environment in more ways than one.
Here are some of the top reasons why additional lighting can help your plants to grow:
Grow lights extend the growing season
Grow lights are a good investment for hobby farmers who want to extend their growing season.
If there’s a cold season where you live, that greatly limits growing outside year round.
However, using supplemental lighting on indoor plants or plants in a greenhouse means you can successfully grow all year.
LED lights make flowers bloom early or late, depending on demand
When you are able to control the intensity of the light and they type of light, you have better control over how they grow.
This may be especially useful when growing sensitive plants like orchids and roses in bulk.
Grow during seasons with less sun and low-intensity light
With LED lighting, you can still enjoy year-round blooms, even when the days are short.
This is defined as being less than 13 hours of light.
Photoperiodic lighting is ideal to use for low intensity lighting when the days are short in order to create long days.
It’s also used after transplant.
Grow Lights increase growth
Photosynthetic lighting is a higher intensity lighting.
You can use it to increase root and shoot growth, to improve the plant’s quality and to increase plant yield.
You can also use photosynthetic lighting to create long days.
Things to consider when choosing Indoor Grow lights
- Smart indoor farm and Photoperiodism concept. Selective focus on sprinkler water head and Artificial LED panel light source used in an experiment on vegetables plant growth
Before deciding on the type of lighting, consider the following:
How much space do you need to illuminate?
PPFD stands for Photosynthetic Photon Flux Density.
It’s the measure of photons in the 400 – 700nm range of the visible light spectrum which will shine (or “land”) on a square meter per second.
Artificial lights will produce light but you want to be sure it’s directed toward the plant and not wasted.
To determine this, choose a light based on the area you need by looking at how the company describes the PPFD.
Amount of solar radiation in the atmosphere
The amount of solar radiation affects how much light is available for photosynthesis.
Where are you using it, in a greenhouse or indoors?
How much space you have and where you are keeping the plants and lights also factor in which types of lighting to purchase.
If you are using it in a greenhouse, you should consider the type of greenhouse, glazing uses, and the types of equipment already installed.
What will you grow?
Different types of crops need different types of lighting to optimize their potential.
Certain plants need high beam light, while others may grown better in shade.
Choose the lighting depending on the type of plants you intend to grow and if you need vegetative lights and/or bloom lights.
Space available to hang lighting
Lighting will have to be moved upward as the plant grows in height.
You’ll have to account for the wiring and socket spaces also.
Electricity and maintenance cost
This is often one of the most important factors when deciding your overall gardening or greenhouse budget.
If you have solar panels, that will help you reduce ongoing costs for additional lighting.
Lighting Control Systems
Lighting is available in various forms, and a combination of lights is usually required to cover the entire light spectrum.
It’s crucial to keep in mind that people perceive light differently than vegetables or plants.
Another point we must remember is that although the spectral quality of the sun is constant, it is greatly variable in duration, intensity, and direction.
Lots of strategies, including greenhouse lighting control systems, have been developed to deal with the unwanted indoor lighting conditions.
The lighting controls can substitute for many spectrums of sunlight needed for plant growth.
Sunlight conditions in a greenhouse structure can vary expeditiously.
Humidity can affect the temperature and luminescence.
To balance this effect, ventilation, shading, heating, humidification, irrigation and lighting components should also be responsive if a controlled environment is to be achieved.
This needs excellent engineering, control devices, and proper selection of equipment.
You might have to install timers to manage the duration of light and darkness.
To save electricity, you can also try setting up solar-powered greenhouses.
A good lighting control system also needs an understanding of the limitations and capabilities of the greenhouse systems, controllers and sensors.
What are the best LED grow lights?
Choosing the best LED grow lights for indoor plants usually needs a basic knowledge of the light source.
Today, there are many different types of grow lights and fixtures available in the market.
- What are the best LED grow lights
Some of them include:
Fluorescent greenhouse lights
Fluorescent lights are the best and most cost-effective way of providing indoor lighting.
The lights emitted by these bulbs are conducive to the normal growth of plants and flowers.
- The cool bulbs convey light in blue color which is effective for seedlings.
- The warm bulbs convey red light to help in fruiting and flowering.
Fluorescent grow lights produce very little heat.
For best results, place these bulbs about two inches from the plants.
What makes these grow lights the one of the best is the fact that they are inexpensive and easy to install.
Also, a typical fluorescent bulb can last for up to 20,000 hours.
It’s a great option for those looking to get value for money.
High Intensity Discharge (HID) Lamps
High Intensity Discharge lamps are best suited for bigger plants and flowers.
The light emitting spectrum per square feet is much more than those of other lights.
With more light available, plants will absorb more light.
The fixtures also have reflectors which reflect light back onto plants.
This wide frame lighting can be costlier than others.
They also produce heat and should not be kept too close to the plants for they might burn their leaves.
They are available in two types — High Pressure Sodium (HPS) and Metal Halide (MH).
Metal Halide Lamps
The light emitted through metal halide lamps is almost similar to natural light.
Therefore, it tremendously aides in the vegetative growth of plants.
It’s great for plants that need environments similar to the ones outdoor and do well in areas that do not get any sunlight.
Metal Halide High Intensity Discharge lights convey the blue light need for flowering and budding.
This type of light is more tolerable than the light from the high pressure sodium lamps.
High Pressure Sodium Lamps
These lamps emit orange red lights which aides in the growth of flowers and fruits.
High pressure sodium HIDs supply light in the red spectrum.
However, they are not great for the working environment.
Most peoples’ eyes will have trouble adjusting to the bright red color.
These lamps are a bit expensive but are as effective as fluorescent lamps.
They last longer than metal halides.
These bulbs are not the natural choice for growers.
They become hot and are not as effective as other light variants.
These lights emit red spectrum light.
Due to their high heat output and low intensity, conventional incandescent bulbs are usually considered a poor option for greenhouse lights.
Incandescent lights may be utilized as a secondary lighting option when installed at a safe distance from vegetables or plants.
The energy costs for artificial lighting can be a big expense.
The USDA offers grants and subsidies for growers, so while accounting for lighting expenses, you can check with them first.
Using a lighting control system can benefit your plants.
You can also minimize costs by setting timers and using solar powered lighting.
In addition, you may need a greenhouse heater.
What type of light is best for growing plants indoors?
Lights for growing plants and vegetables are an essential part of growing good crops.
In many areas, sunlight may not be strong enough to supplement plant growth.
Farmers will have to consider installing additional lighting.
Growing lights can also extend the growing season of plants which in turn supplement demand and increase yield.
Using reflectors and mirrors can also help even the best LED grow lights for indoor plants.
Recycle Christmas lights to Make a Heat Mat for Seed Starting
Choosing the best LED grow lights
Mars Hydro manufactures quality LED grow lights and grow tents. Their lighting series systems are ideal for home growers as well as for commercial use.
They make it easy to determine which light is best for your circumstances.
They will convey the actual power, the coverage area, and the bloom area so you can maximize your yield.
In addition, they will have recommendations for greenhouses, beginners, commercial growers, and more.
They offer full spectrum LED lighting for hydroponics, indoor growing, commercial growing, and more.
Mars Hydro Grow Lights with blurple and red LEDs are popular with different growers.
Use Mars Hydro LED discount code: RLT
The LED market changed a lot due to the progress of LED technology.
Their quantum board style Mars SP series and Mars TS series sun-like spectrum LEDs are gaining popularity with personal and commercial growers due to their high light efficiency and affordable pricing.
Cover 2’x4’ for bloom, 3’x5’ for veg, Meanwell driver, waterproof, designed for greenhouse/indoor commercial growers.
See Mars Hydro SP series LEDs here.
Mars Hydro TS1000LED
Cover 2’x2’ for bloom, for growing one plant.
Others in the Hydro TS series are here.
Cover 3’x3’ for bloom. See it here.
Cover 4’x4’ for bloom, Meanwell driver, also another good choice for commercial growing and personal growers.
For others other LED grow lights.
Can any LED light be used as a grow light?
Indoor gardening requires special lighting.
To be successful with indoor plants, gardens, and flowers, you need to find a reliable substitute for natural sunlight.
Full spectrum LED lighting will be beneficial for hydroponics, indoor growing, commercial growing, and for greenhouses and grow tents.
It’s important to consider the different growing stages as well as the different plant requirements.
Factor in lighting requirements for the various stages of growth.
You’ll also need to consider light intensity and light duration.
Can any LED light be used as a grow light?
When you purchase a light specifically designed to use with plants, you will know you are getting the correct color temperature. You will also know the exact bloom area per the manufacturer’s description.
Are LED grow lights any good?
When deciding between grow lights, you want to choose a company that offers a variety of lighting options.
They should also be current with the latest technology.
Quantum board style series sun-like spectrum LEDs are becoming more popular for home use as well as commercial growers due to their high light efficiency and affordable pricing.
Best LED Grow Lights for Indoor Plants
There is no doubt that using LED grow lighting has its advantages.
The spectral output is better in LEDs than in any other type of light.
LED plant grow lights are the newest option for lighting available for plants and vegetables.
They are advertised to be the coolest and most efficient grow lights available.
They work well for homeowners as well as for commercial use.
In addition, many of them can last up to 11 years and are easy to hang and install due to their small size.
With the best LED grow lights for Indoor Greenhouse, you can extend your growing season and maximize each plant’s potential.