Having plants in your home can breathe vitality and an organic feel to any room. Not only that, but they’re beautiful and add a little touch of nature to your living space. However, not every plant needs the same upkeep in order to grow and flourish. In order to make sure your indoor garden is healthy and vibrant, it’s important to know the different types of lights for indoor plants, as well as how to choose them.
1. Plant Type
Some plants need more sunlight, some less. Some can handle brighter light, while others need a dimmer setting. To make sure your plant is thriving, pay attention to its needs and how it changes over time.
Since lots of natural light isn’t something everyone has access to in their home – and even if you do it still might not be enough for some plants, figuring out which grow light to get is important. As the professionals from Grow Light Info pointed out that most online reviews of grow lights aren’t really helpful since they just list the best-selling lights on Amazon. While this might be a useful piece of information, it isn’t really something you can base your decision on.
Knowing what to look for in a grow light, whether it’s LED lights, fluorescent, or HID – will help you make a better decision.
2. Light Quality
When it comes to plant growth, light is what they need in order to survive and spread their roots. However, the type of light given off by grow lights can vary. Some LED grow lights produce a wider spectrum of colors than other types, allowing for more healthy and rapid growth.
Some fluorescent and HID lights only emit specific wavelengths of color, which might not be enough for certain plants. For example, some plants can only grow in full-spectrum white or diurnal lighting. Others don’t really like it if it’s too bright and prefer a dimmer setting. For specific plants, it’s important to know exactly which type of lighting they need in order to thrive. If you don’t want to try out a ton of different kinds of lights and waste a lot of money on failed trial and error, choose a light that emits an adequate amount of color needed by the plant.
Whichever type of light you decide on, make sure it’s of high quality. The way to determine this is by considering the amount of lumen or PAR watts. Lumen measures how much visible light gets emitted, while PAR (photosynthetically active radiation) determines the exact color and spectrum that’s given off and this is what plants need to grow healthy and strong.
3. Light Intensity
Light intensity is the rate at which photons are being produced by a grow light source. To be more specific, this means how many micromoles per second are being emitted from the source to the plant. When determining the intensity of a light source, this should be taken into consideration as well.
The amount of lumen or PAR watts emitted from a grow light determines how much photosynthesis will occur for the plant and how healthy it will be. However, photosynthesis also depends on other factors such as temperature, quality of water, nutrient availability, and the plants’ genetics. Different plants might need specific lighting for optimal color spectrum growth. The most important part is to consider these factors when choosing a grow light type.
For instance, some LED grow lights are very intense and might not be the best option for certain types of plants. On the other hand, HID grow lights can emit an adequate amount of lumen or PAR watts but might create too much heat for some plant types.
4. Heat And Cooling
One thing to consider is how much heat will be produced by a light you choose and how this will affect your plant. A high-intensity light source might produce too much heat for some plants, especially if they are very small or just seedlings.
This is why it’s important to consider the right intensity required by a plant so it won’t be negatively affected. Some lights tend to produce less heat because they are built with cooling systems that dissipate heat faster and emit less of it overall.
This feature is often found in LED lighting which makes them a top choice for those who have smaller indoor spaces to work with. For larger indoor areas, it’s best to choose HID or fluorescent lighting because they emit more lumen and PAR watts than LED lights do.
5. Lifespan And Durability
Another consideration is the lifespan of an indoor plant-grow light source.
In most cases, LED grow lights have a longer lifespan than HID or fluorescent lights do. In general, lights that are more durable are engineered with high-quality materials made to withstand a lot of wear and tear. They are usually encased in a sturdy metal or plastic case that can take a long time to break down.
In contrast, some lights use glass bulbs which tend to eventually break after repeated exposure to heat, humidity, and frequent on/off cycles. Fluorescent lights are also known for needing constant maintenance because they require regular bulb changes every six months.
With all of these things taken into consideration, choosing a type of grow light that suits your indoor plant is easier than ever. Make sure to read up on the specific plant type that you have, and how it needs to be cared for. Once you figure that out, you’ll know exactly what to look for in a grow light in order to create an oasis for your home.
Featured image: Unsplash (vadim kaipov).