Gloseeker Article Writer
All plants require light for photosynthesis and flowering processes to occur. However, the amount of light needed for each genus, species, and type can differ greatly, especially due to weather conditions.
That's why supplementing the little sunlight your plants are getting with artificial lighting is important.
To help you grow indoor plants and get the desired gardening results, we have prepared a brief plant-to-grow light guide.
How do You Ensure that Your Indoor Plants are Getting Enough Lights?
To ensure plant lighting is sufficient, do the following;
- Invest in a standing lamp that has three bulbs; one that has adjustable fixtures
- Attach one incandescent bulb and two fluorescent bulbs. Make sure they have high wattage
- Make sure the light is aimed at your plant table, with the fluorescent bulb being closer than the incandescent light. This helps prevent heat damage
- Also, ensure that the lights are over plant pots or beds. This mimics natural sunlight, which ensures all leaves and sides of the plant receive light
- Place a reflective surface underneath your plant table so as to reflect light back up to the foliage
- Ensure that light is available 16 hours a day
By doing this, your indoor plants will produce significant yields.
Which Indoor Plant Lighting is Better to Use?
Sunlight offers the perfect balance of light in terms of wavelengths needed for them to grow and bloom. That's why we advise you to place your plants near a window where they can enjoy the sunlight for a few hours a day.
If this is not possible, artificial lights can still ensure proper growth and flowering. In artificial lights, ensure that it emits.
- The Violet blue wavelength encourages foliage growth. Blue light in the 400-520 nanometer range encourages photosynthesis, growth, and chlorophyll absorption
- Red wavelength light encourages fruiting and flowering. This should be in the range of 610-720 spectrum
- Note- green wavelengths are of little use, which is why plant leaves appear green since they reflect it
Plant grow lights offers a good balance of light spectrum for photosynthesis. Therefore, before purchasing these lights, make sure to check their color spectrum. Lights that provide a full spectrum are the best choice for indoor plants, which is why LED lights are the best .
Types of Light for Indoor Plants
Here are five types of lights you can use for indoor plants;
Light-emitting-diode or LED is the most popular type of grow light today for producing very little heat and high brightness. These provide full-spectrum lighting, but they may also be tailored to a specific bandwidth depending on your plant needs. Several LED lights can be programmed to emit different levels of intensity and different times of the day. Others can be synchronized with a smartphone.
These are suitable for low-light indoor plants such as ferns, vines, and dracaenas. These lights provide about 10 percent of their energy as light while the rest is heat. As such, they aren't ideal for light-loving plants such as cacti, tropical, or succulents.
A fluorescent light bulb for indoor plants is ideal for medium-light houseplants such as African Violets. This lighting can also be used for growing veggies indoors. They are typically long, tube-like bulbs that range from T5, T8, and T12 sizes. The narrower the bulb, the more efficient and brighter due to the limited surface area.
When growing houseplants, go for bulbs between 4000 Kelvin and 6000 Kelvin as the bulbs to mimic the growth you'd get in a greenhouse. With starter plans and seedlings, place T5 or T8 bulbs at four inches from the plants to mimic the sun. For established herbs and houseplants, place them a foot or two from the light source.
Compact fluorescent lights
Compact fluorescents work great for indoor plants without having to use a full T5 system and cost a fraction of the cost of incandescent lights. However, the wattage varies, so you should consult a specialist to know what can work best for your indoor plants' needs. Compact fluorescent lights are ideal for carnivorous plants and phalaenopsis.
For large plants occupying a larger space, Halides work best as they emit lights to a larger distance. You do not need a large halide, as plants can get by with a smaller halide.
Different types of plants require varying amounts of light. As a rule of thumb, most flowering plants and vegetables need 12-16 hours of light every day. However, they should also have at least 8 hours of darkness for the growth and flowering process to take place. Make sure to read your plant tags and seed packages, or ask the experts to know the ideal light specifications for your plants.