“Can plants grow in artificial light?” is a question many plant enthusiasts and gardeners are wondering. You may live someplace with inadequate access to direct sunlight but still want to keep healthy and thriving plants.

Can Plants Grow in Artificial Light Plant America

You need not worry anymore because our gardening experts are going to answer all your questions regarding grow lights in this comprehensive guide. Read on and find out how these lights work and which one is the ideal option in the market these days.

Can Plants Grow in Artificial Light?

️⚡ Yes, plants will grow in artificial light when natural light is either completely absent or not enough. Here we are talking about lamps specifically manufactured to grow plants, not ordinary house lights. LED lights are necessary for growing plants because they emit minimal heat while giving off UV rays.

– Understanding How Plant Lights Work

Plant lights work by imitating light rays from the sun and providing plants with the energy needed to carry out photosynthesis. Some of these lights produce the full spectrum of light wavelengths, just like the sun. This is how HID lights and UV lights work.

Others release primarily blue and red wavelength lights because these are needed mainly through the plants.

How Plant Lights Work Plant America

Different plants use different lightwaves to make food for themselves from the full spectrum of the sun’s light. For growing plants indoors, you can purchase an artificial type of light that emits the same wavelength that a particular plant needs.

– Duration of Using Plant Lights Only

No matter which light type you use, it cannot be as effective as natural sunlight. Artificial lighting takes a very long time to give plants the energy that they need to carry out photosynthesis.

This is why most of these lights need to be kept on for about 12 to 14 hours every single day for low-light plants.

This is especially pertinent if you are solely relying on these lights for plant growth. These lights will have to be switched on for 16 to 18 hours daily for high-light plants because they need more light.

What Are the Different Types of Artificial Lights Used for Plants?

Different types of artificial lights used to cultivate plants are LED lights, fluorescent and incandescent lights, as well as halogen and horticultural bulbs. These lights generate light energy using several techniques so that plants can use it for development.

– LED Lights

LED is a light emitting diode, which is considered the best artificial source of light for plant growth. They are low heat, reasonably priced, and highly efficient when using electricity. They usually do not produce the full spectrum of light, unlike other artificial sources of light.

LED Lights on Plants Plant America

An LED light will mainly produce light of a single wavelength only. Most plants need light within the blue and red spectrum to carry out photosynthesis. You will need to purchase just a few LEDs that emit only these two lights. This arrangement not only costs less but is also more environmentally friendly.

– Fluorescent Lights

These are the most widely used plant lights and come in bulb or tube form. Look for fluorescent tubes or bulbs that emit the entire wavelength spectrum, from UV to red. This way, you can place one light and grow several indoor plants using it.

The bulb form is also called compact fluorescent light, takes up less space, and can be installed in your average bulb fixture. It tends to produce more heat and should be placed farther away than the tube variation. For plants, the best fluorescent-type lights are T5, T8, and T12, which are all reasonably priced.

These lights are also easy on the eyes of plant keepers. When purchasing these types of lights for plants, look for ‘cool white’ or ‘daylight’ products. These are the ones that release the entire spectrum as compared to ‘warm’ ones that primarily remove light along blue wavelengths.

– Incandescent Lights

Incandescent lights work more or less as supplemental light rather than for growing a plant by themselves. This is because they produce more red light waves than any other. These lights are perfect when trying to make a plant bloom or supplement a fluorescent type of light that emits blue wavelengths.

Because they produce shorter wavelengths, these lights heat a lot more than other lights. They can even cause burns to the foliage if placed too close to it. With better and more efficient lights in the market, the demand for incandescent lights is decreasing with time.

– Halogen Light for Plants

Halogen lights also produce the full spectrum of white light to help plants grow. It is an adequate substitute for natural light for almost all kinds of plants but is recommended less now. First of all, it produces a large amount of heat as infrared light rays. They need to be placed a long distance away from the plant, otherwise they will end up burning it.

Secondly, they use a lot of energy compared to fluorescent and LED grow lights. Several governments are now slowly banning these lights because they use too much electricity and are not energy efficient at all.

– Horticultural Lights

These are artificial grow lights for professional plant keepers and serious hobbyists. They come in tube form that can easily be installed in regular light fixtures on the wall or the ceiling. They produce the full spectrum of light waves, mostly like natural sunlight, and are helpful for all plant types. They can even be used for seed germination and plant propagation successfully.

Using Horticultural Lights Plant America

What Are Some Factors That Help Artificial Lights Grow Plants?

Some factors that help artificial plant lights grow plants are the intensity of light and the color temperature produced by the sunlight. The wattage of electricity consumed and the heat produced are also important factors when it comes to choosing the best light.

– The Intensity of Grow Lights

Not just any light can be placed on top of plants to help them grow. There is a certain intensity of light at which plant cells begin to synthesize chlorophyll, and it varies from species to species.

That is why selecting a plant lamp that emits the appropriate light intensity for the plant you wish to grow is critical. For example, succulents thrive well when the power of sunlight is around 2,000 lumens per square foot.

– The Wattage

The quantity of electricity consumed by artificial light is referred to as wattage. The more the wattage written on the package of the morning, the higher your electricity bill is going to be. Keep in mind that these lights have to be kept turned on for 13 to 18 hours every single day.

Fortunately, a lot of low-energy-consuming and sustainable options are available in the market. You should go for these options instead of older light types that use too much electricity, like the metal halide halogen lamp.

– Color Temperature

The color temperature is basically how we describe what type of light waves are emitted by a plant light. Plant species use different wavelengths of light from the entire light spectrum for growth.

If you want to promote flowering and fruiting in plants, then buy lights with color temperatures around the 3,500 to 4,500 Kelvin range. To make indoor plants grow, lights with color temperatures between 5,000 to 6,000 kelvin should be used.

– Heat Released From Lights

These lights will inevitably produce heat energy as they are kept on for most of the day. This heat is only sometimes suitable for the plants that you are trying to grow. Tough plants like succulents might be able to tolerate heat well, but others like orchids will end up getting sunburnt.

Heat Released From Lights Plant America

That is why we advise all plant enthusiasts to go for LEDs instead of any other light source. These produce little heat and keep the plants safe. If your light source produces heat, it has to be placed even farther than it ideally should.

– Placement of Lights

The type of plant to grow and the light being used determines what the distance between them should be. The ideal length may vary from two inches to two feet in total. Distance also depends on the intensity of light and the wattage that it consumes.

Lights consuming 10 watts should be placed four to six inches away from flowering plants. Similarly, lights using 30 watts should be placed at least 10 inches away. For non-flowering plants, the same lights need to be placed a further one to two inches away.

The good news is that most manufacturers specify how far their lights should be placed from certain plants. Fluorescent bulbs are naturally to be set farther apart than tubes. Lights should ideally be installed immediately overhead so that all parts of the plant are equally illuminated for photosynthesis.

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