The LED One Distribution team is looking at using LED lighting to grow plants for your home or business. With the grow lights available today you can grow any plant any time of the year. You can enjoy blooming flowers, fresh herbs, lettuce or tomatoes in the middle of winter.
Light – It’s all About Photosynthesis
Photosynthesis is a process all green plants do. They take sunlight and convert it into food and energy for growing. How much light plants need for photosynthesis depends on several things. Age of the plant, the type of plant and the color of the light can all be different for various plants.
There are many different grow lights available. Understanding the terminology used to measure lighting will help you make the right lighting choice.
The light output of a bulb is measured in lumens. The higher the lumens, the brighter the light.
Intensity is the amount of light a plant receives. The lumens affect intensity. It can also be controlled by the distance from the plant. The closer the light is to the plant, the lower the lumens needed. You’ll want LED lighting to be 6” to 12” above your plants. As your plants grow adjust the lighting to be a consistent distance from the plant.
Duration is how many hours of light per day a plant receives. Just like people, plants need time to ‘sleep’. During this time they convert some of their energy into growth. Some plants need ‘sleep’ time to develop flower buds. There are other plants with growth patterns that need ‘sleep’ time. Flowering plants need light 16 hours a day, other plants will do well with 12 hours of light.
The color of light is described in ‘Kelvin Units.’ A light with a 2500 Kelvin rating will have red tones. It promotes flowers, budding, and also fruit. A light with a 5000 Kelvin rating will have blue tones. Blue tones promote plant growth and are best for vegetables. Combining red and blue colors gives your plants the best of both colors. Natural sunlight contains all colors. Full-spectrum LED lights are available that provide a full range of colors. However, plants do not need the yellow or green part of the color spectrum. There are also lights specially designed for seedlings. If seedlings don’t get the right light they will get spindly and weak.
Photosynthetically Activation Radiation
Photosynthetically Activation Radiation or PAR is an indicator of how much usable light the plants receive. PAR is measured in micro-moles per second. The higher micro-moles per second is not always an indicator of the best light. Plants directly under the center of the light receive more micro-moles than plants on the edge. A lower PAR light distributes the usable evenly light over a greater.
What is the Difference between LED’s, Incandescent, and Fluorescent Bulbs?
LED lights use half the electricity, are mercury-free, last up to 50,000 hours, and won’t shatter when dropped. Incandescent lights should not be used as grow lights as they generate too much heat and can burn plants.
Use a Programmable Timer
There are many programmable timers available. Using the timer will make sure the plants get all the light needed, with some ‘sleep’ time every day. It will also help you to get a good night’s sleep without worrying whether you turned the plant light off.
The LED One Distribution team is here to help with any questions you might have about LED grow lights. You can show off your cooking with fresh herbs and enjoy eating fresh fruit and vegetables all year long. Please call us for more information.