LED grow lights are artificial lights that can be used to help plants grow indoors. The concept of LED grow light is an attempt to mimic the sun’s ability in order to provide the needs of the plants that are being grown indoors.
Unlike animals, plants are autotrophs, meaning they create their own food source. This is impossible without sunlight. Usually, they use energy from the sun, water, and gases around them to create glucose for their growth.
However, because the plants are being grown indoors, there is a need to use artificial lights as an alternative for the missing sunlight. This is where LED grow lights come in.
How Led Grow Light Works
LED growth light works by creating a spectrum via passing light through semiconductors instead of burning a filament.
There are two types of semiconductor materials used, one has a negative charge and is referred to as electrons while the other has a positive charge, and is called holes. When LED is powered, electrons and holes collide and release energy in the form of photons.
Light energy is passed through semiconductor chips to emit their spectrum of light unlike other grow lights which use filaments, gas, mercury, or lead to produce light.
Usually what we see as light is majorly the part of the electromagnetic radiation spectrum that is visible to our eyes. However, there are certain wavelengths that the human eye cannot detect and are very important for plants. These wavelengths are very important for photosynthesis and it is known as Photosynthesis Active Radiation (PAR).
There are different wavelengths in PAR and each has the function of stimulating plant growth in different plants at every stage. The intensity of the light when it finally touches the plant surface is called Photosynthetic Photon Flux Density (PPFD).
LED grow lights are energy-efficient, versatile, and more durable than other grow lights including incandescent lights.
Food production in cities has become very convenient through LED grow lights as it provides plants indoor lighting needs and most people can now participate in indoor gardening.
Will Your Indoor Plants Yield More With LED Grow Lights?
Different tests and researches have been carried out to see the effect that LED grow light has on plants. It is now evident that LED grow light contributes positively to the yield of plants, making them yield more than they would have under other grow lights.
Some of the advantages that LED grow lights have compared to other types of lights when it comes to indoor plant growth are;
1. Greater Efficiency
LED lights are more efficient than even HID lights. It is best to use LED growth lights to reduce the utility cost as they last twice as long as other types of grow lights. LED grow lights use fewer watts and produce brighter light compared to other grow lights.
2. Full Spectrum Lighting
This is a major advantage of using the LED grow light. Plants need blue and red light waves to grow. This is because the chemicals that influence plant growth react to these waves of light positively.
Photochromes which promote leafy growth, react well with red light, while cryptochromes which affect plant light response react well with blue light. A full spectrum LED grow light will produce both lights.
If you use led grow light, you don’t have to worry about switching out lights because your plants will mature through their cycles.
3. Lower Temperature
Using LED light is advantageous because it is cooler than HID bulbs. If a bulb is extremely hot, it can pose danger on the plant and affect its overall productivity. With LED lights, the temperature is lower and there is no risk of leaf burning.
4. Faster Growth Cycle
The ability to choose different wavelengths of light to facilitate different plant processes for 24 hours a day allows farmers to influence the behavior and season of plants leading to a faster growth cycle.
5. Better Crops
Several trials have proven that LED grow lights produce better crops than other types of grow light. The plants grow faster and bigger because LED grow light particularly targets some functions like anthocyanin accumulation, flowering inhibition, enhanced rooting, etc.
Factors To Consider When Choosing Led Grow Light.
Even though all LED lights can contribute positively to the growth of plants, using just any kind of LED light as grow light would be at the expense of the health of your plant and the level of yield you would have gotten if you had considered some certain factors like:
1. Full Spectrum Lighting
A plant can grow on almost any type of lighting but for efficient photosynthesis, different wavelengths are necessary. Some of the best LED grow lights can provide plants with the full spectrum necessary throughout each growth.
Depending on the stage of the plant, red to blue spectrum as well as ultraviolet and infrared are required for efficient growth and this makes it important to go for the full spectrum LED light.
A full spectrum LED grow light will emit all the color spectrum that your plant needs to grow and yield well enough. To know more about choosing the best lighting spectrum for your indoor plants, read this blog post by Gardening Myths.
2. Energy Consumption
For effectiveness, your LED grow light has to run for about 10 to 11 hours every day and this will, in turn, have an effect on the electricity bill.
To balance this, one has to read the detailed product description and ask your supplier or manufacturer questions so you can go for a more energy-efficient option and save some money.
It is advisable not to go for a LED grow light product that is less than 300W even though you can get up to 1000W.
3. Heat Output
The heat emitted from the LED grow light can directly affect the plant if it is on the high side. It can also play a role in how durable the light product will be, hence it is best to use grow lights with cooling fans or heat sinks as they have no negative effects on the plant and allow even closer mounting.
Grow lights are normally mounted in close proximity to plants. For this reason, high heat output will damage the plant.
4. Plant Growing Space
The amount and sizes of lights that will be needed depends on the space availability. The grow room has to be measured and it’s important to know the size of the lighting area that one LED lamp unit can sufficiently serve.
In conclusion, using LED grow lights for indoor plants actually leads to more yields while helping you save money from energy consumption. This makes it the best type of grow light for indoor plants.
We hope this post was helpful, if you have any further questions about LED grow lights, please ask us in the comment section.