Growing plants indoors with artificial light is the best method to protect your plants, especially in the Winter season. If you are living in a limited light environment, this method will help to survive the houseplants. When you are growing tropical plants in longer winter season regions, sunlight is more important. Because light is crucial for every plants’ photosynthesis. When you are providing artificial lights for your greenhouse you can grow them during the nighttime.
What is photosynthesis’s short answer? In short, photosynthesis is the process that every plant uses sunlight to make its own food (glucose). Every green plant needs to generate energy (glucose) for its growth, flower/fruit development, and protect it from diseases. Photosynthesis requires sunlight, water, and carbon dioxide. In this process, outputs are glucose and oxygen.
When the houseplant receives low light it stretching, skinning, and become pale. In the Winter season, most of the indoor gardeners move the plant close to the Window. But it is not enough for most of the houseplants. When the plant does not receive light for several days, it starts to die, regardless of if it receives enough water, carbon dioxide, and fertilizer. You can now realize how much a light important factor for green plants. You have to provide the best artificial lighting for your indoor plants.
How to provide Artificial grow lights for indoor plants.
How to select the best grow lights for plants.
When you are selecting grow lights for indoor plants, you have to pay attention to mainly three things. They are brightness level, color temperature, and spectrum. These three things are more critical. Another important thing is the bulb height.
Brightness Level: When selecting grow lights for indoor plants, you have to pay attention to the bulbs’ brightness level. Brightness level measure using the Lumens. It gives detail about how much light you are getting. Higher brightness better. Best Lumens for growing lights for indoor plants are between 1,500 to 2,000. Although on a summer day, we receive around 10,000 lumens from the sunlight. But in practical plants do not need that much brightness.
Kelvin scale/Color temperature: Natural sunlight receives 2,700 and 7,000 Kelvin. If you can provide similar condition it is the perfect artificial growing light for indoor plants. The optimum level for growing plants indoors with lights is between 5,000 to 6,500 level.
Spectrum: Plants require more blue and red color. In outdoor plants receive full spectrum. Always try to use full-spectrum lights. When growing indoors, blue light is required for the growth of the plant’s leaf and steam. Red light essential plant’s early growth stages such as germination and root bowl development. Once the plant is fully grown red light is required for flowers and fruit development.
When using full-spectrum it receives both colors. When you go for the full spectrum bulbs, their optimum value range should be 400 and 700 nm. (400-500 nm is blue, 500-600 nm is green, and 600-700 nm is red). To check the bulb spectrum value check the bulb PPFD or PAR value. If you need to accurately calculate the plant receiving PPFD value, you have to purchase a PPFD measurement device.
Watt: This is not affecting the plant, but it is highly effective for your pocket. When you go for the LED lights, you have to check their actual consuming watts. Most of the LED’s show it’s replacing bulb watts, rather than its actual watts. So pay more attention to it. In LED’s lower watt can generate more brightness than the regular bulbs.
Heat: Alway select low heat generating LED bulbs rather than halogen or fluorescent bulbs. Overheating not good for plants. Also LED is more economical.
Red light or Blue light for plants?
This depends on the situation. When the plant stretching, pale, and slow foliage growth it needs more blue light (cooler). If the plant not flowering and developing fruits, it needs more red light (warmer). In such a situation you can select full-spectrum LED bulbs or provide red or blue color as per the plants’ requirement. Increasing the red light (to 610-720nm level) improve indoor garden plants blooming and fruiting development and increase yield and health.
LED grow light hanging heights.
Height is one of the critical things when providing artificial lighting to indoor garden plants. When placing the bulb at the top of the pot each leaf should receive enough light throughout the day. Adjusting the position will improve the quality of lighting. In this situation blub optics important. To check the accurate PPFD level received for the plant, you have to use the PPFD measurement device.
When light travels through the source, it reduces strength. That is why you have to pay more attention to the bulb height. When the bulb moves away from the plant, the lights’ PPFD value decreases. Therefore, always follow the manufacture’s recommended hanging heights when using LED lights for indoor plants.
Brightness adjustment options.
Most of the high end growing lights has an option to adjust the brightness level. This dimmable function allows changing the brightness level from 5% to 100% as per your requirement.
Special IR Included Grow Light.
When selecting the grow light for indoor gardens, infrared included blub is more useful. Especially for flowering and fruit development plants such as peppers, tomatoes, and orchid, succulents, Aloe Vera, violets, etc flowering plants, and herbs.