So, what actually are grow lights? Well, imagine if your plant wasn't getting enough natural light, if you are lacking south facing windows, or have already filled up all your windowsills with your plant collection.
These circumstances are common and can be problematic for plant parents who want to better promote the health of their plants and avoid sticky issues such as leaf loss, thinning and stem weakness, that results from a lack of light.
Grow lights solve this problem by giving plants direct light from anywhere in your home.
As new plant parents sprout up, we think it's essential to show aspiring green thumb gurus all the tips & tricks the grow gang have up our sleeves about plant parenting. In the following guide, we will share how you can use your grow lights to help your plant grow happy and healthy and go from surviving to thriving.
Benefits of grow lights
Grow lights have many benefits to plant parents, which is why they are quickly becoming more popular by the minute… So, what can grow lights do for you?
- Easy to use and set up
- Energy-efficient for your home
- Remove the worry of leaf loss and poor plant health
- Versatility, offering a viable light solution from anywhere you choose
- Control over the light time your plants get
- They can enhance the aesthetic of your home
- They make plant parenting easier with consistent light for your plants
- Grow lights can remove the worry and stress of plant care
- Can provide confidence in your plant’s overall health and growth
How to use Grow Lights
Setting up your grow lights is often simple and usually takes no work to manage once set up, in fact, most grow lights are ready to use and install straight into your lamp, making the set-up fairly quick. But, Before you rush off to grab your own grow light, here are some helpful tips to get you started:
Positioning: to ensure your plant's complete health you should Position your plant at the right distance from your leafy friend. For a quick guide on distances for grow light bulbs, go here.
Note: It’s key to work with your plant's personality and find the right lighting distance, they will provide you feedback to allow you to adjust.
Luckily helpful tools such as a light meter make plant parenting even easier to measure the best intensity, coverage and distance for your plant.
Knowing how long to keep your plants sunbathed is important to avoid burning or disrupting growth. If you are interested in optimising your plant's health further you can follow this guide to learn more about light measurement and the terminology around it.
Why do plants need light?
Light is a plant's lifeblood for health and well-being, we know this because of a term, you might have heard called photosynthesis. Put simply this is light energy that transfers into growth. Different plants need different levels of light on the spectrum depending on their current stage of growth.
To dive deeper, it is important to understand what is called photosynthetically active radiation (PAR) a mouthful for sure but this term refers to the correct amount of blue and red light a plant needs to thrive.
PAR is defined by the range from 400 to 700 nanometres which are colours visible to the human eye. PAR plays an important role in processes such as flowering and growth etc, these wavelengths play a huge role in a plant's growth and life cycle to support the development of different periods, generally blue light is essential for stem strength and leaf growth and red light are a must for the reproduction of flowering and new seeds are blossoming. For an in-depth guide go here.
Types of grow lights
There are two main types of grow lights, LED & fluorescent, Other types of lights such as HID and incandescent are rarely used anymore due to better alternatives. So, which one should you go for? The answer is LED. Why? LEDs are generally considered the better option and here is a list of reasons why;
- They emit the best ranges of wavelengths for plants
- They promote growth at different periods of development
- They’re energy-efficient
- Cost efficient
- Easy to use
- Less likely to burn due to low heat emissions
So, what about fluorescent lights? Depending on the type of fluorescent lights you buy, you could be overspending on a light that won't meet your plant's needs and may even break due to poor build. Therefore, it is best to invest in LEDs for long-term smart thinking.
What to look for when buying a good grow light
- Energy efficient – when looking for a grow light you should aim to find a light that has a PPF/W of around 1.8 or higher you may be using more energy than necessary, or risking not having enough light intensity for your plant’s growth.
- Quality materials – go for those that are steady and don’t break easily for long-term satisfaction and plant care.
- Aesthetic – You can find really beautiful grow lights that can enhance your green indoor garden. There are a range of different grow lights on the market, in different shapes, sizes which emit different colours, make sure yours fits well and looks good in your living or grow area!
- User-friendly – If you want an easy-going grow light that does a great job at taking care of your plants, you should get a beginner-friendly light that’s low maintenance, taking care of your plant without you ever having to think twice.
Overall grow lights are a great way to boost the health and wellness of your green friends as well as add touches of aesthetic charm to your living space. Avoiding leaf loss and stem thinning can be easily accomplished with grow lights to allow for the full potential of your green indoor garden to prosper and bloom all year round.
If you’ve been thinking about investing in a long-lasting solution to prevent poor plant health, LED lights might just be the best solution for you if you enjoy aesthetics, quick installation, and easy care.
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