Are Full Spectrum LED Lights Good for Plants?
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Gardening under LED plant lights is a popular and efficient way to grow indoors. The important thing is to choose full spectrum LED lights and learn how grow lights work to promote plant growth to the maximum extent, which makes the world differently.
The concept of full spectrum sounds and feels vague to those who have never excelled in physics.
This article aims to help you understand the spectrum required for plant growth and whether full spectrum LED lights are good for plants. We will discuss what the full spectrum is, how different growth spectra affect the different stages of plant growth, and whether we always need the full spectrum for indoor growing.
Come with us. You will find the answer effortlessly.
What is Full Spectrum LED Lighting?
Let’s quickly explain the basic concept of the full spectrum here.
Full spectrum lighting technically means that the light covers all wavelengths of the electromagnetic spectrum that are helpful to plants, including all wavelengths of visible and invisible (ultraviolet and infrared) light.
The wavelength range that is most helpful to plants is between 400 and 700 nm, commonly referred to as PAR. i.e., the range of light that plants use for photosynthesis is called PAR, or photosynthetically active radiation. Although it also contains ultraviolet and infrared light, plants use only a limited portion of the visible spectrum for photosynthesis.
To mimic the appearance of natural light, growing with LED full spectrum includes a large amount of green and yellow light, red and blue light.
Are Full Spectrum LED Lights Good for Plants?
Yes, it is ideal for indoor gardening.
Gardening under lights allows plants to bloom almost year-round and to be harvested in the winter. Full spectrum can also accelerate or slow growth, promote root development, improve color and more.
Different wavelengths of light trigger different responses in plants. The stage of growth a plant is in, increasing the number of certain colors of light can help your plants grow the way you want them to.
During nutritional growth, increasing the amount of blue light can result in more compact, sturdy plants, which creates a more uniform canopy height and ensures that the plant receives an equal amount of light.
- During the flowering stage, adding more red light increases the plant’s growth rate and “stretches” it, resulting in greater yields.
- Green can also reduce the activity of secondary metabolites in other species. Adding green to the spectrum will reduce anthocyanin concentrations in lettuce.
- The 385 UVA wavelength optimally increases flower and leaf cannabinoid concentrations in cannabis.
- Far red has also been shown to affect plant defense mechanisms by down-regulating some secondary metabolic pathways, thus making plants more susceptible to herbivores and pathogens.
It is because in nature, the spectrum received by a plant indicates specific environmental conditions, such as the season, and triggers a response from the plant. This is the importance of having a “full spectrum” that contains many wavelengths of light.
10 Benefits of Full Spectrum LED Lights
If you’re considering investing in full-spectrum lighting, understanding these benefits will help you make an informed decision and choose the right full-spectrum LED grow lights for your plants.
Because LEDs consume half the power of fluorescent or incandescent bulbs, using them can save 30 to 50 percent of energy compared to HID and HPS lights.
Full Spectrum LED lights
The higher percentage of blue and red hues combined with the right amount of green provides a source of energy for plants and promotes growth.
It also increases yield by 10% over other types of lights and also allows plants to grow 50% faster than under different types of lighting, such as fluorescent or incandescent.
Uniform Light Distribution
It covers all areas evenly, so you can expect higher yields. Another benefit of uniform light distribution is that
plants no longer have overlapping hot zones at different stages of their growth cycle.
Full spectrum LED lights produce much less heat, which means your air conditioner will be less strained when it comes to exhaust hot air. You’ll spend much less on indoor growing.
LED grow lights typically consume 48% less electricity than HID lights. And you can save your utility bills.
They have an average glow time of up to 50,000 hours. You can adjust the plant light’s working hours based on the plants’ light requirements, which means they don’t need to be replaced as often, saving you money on replacement costs.
You can use the money you save to consider buying more lamps. Boosting production is also a way to increase your profits.
Cooler Operating Temperature
Due to its low heat output, it is ideal for low-temperature environments. This is especially important if you are trying to grow seedlings, which may succumb to overheating.
Harvest Cycle: You can adjust daylight hours and control the wavelength of red light, which can increase the growth rate of your plants, as well as lengthen or shorten their flowering time, giving them multiple harvests and increasing yields.
Dimming: It is important to control the growing light, it keeps the plants healthy. Full spectrum LED lights all have a dimming knob with 0-100% dimming capability.
Light Schedule: Each stage of the plant needs a different amount of light for a different length of time. You should choose an LED grow light with a timer or connect it to a controller to schedule the light for your plants.
Environmental Control: Growers can more precisely control ambient indoor temperatures and plant heat exposure due to the significant cooling effect of LED lights compared to their HPS equivalents.
Hang Closer to the Tree Canopy
Since LED plant lights are low heat emitting, choose the right place and hang them closer to the plants to ensure the best light penetration deep into the canopy. It is well suited for vertical farming.
Multi-level cropping patterns allow growers to grow more plants in a limited space. In areas where space is at a premium or real estate is expensive, vertical farming planting facilitates increased harvest yields for cultivators while reducing their expenses.
The colors of the full spectrum LED lights can be adjusted accordingly to the crop and its life cycle.
In order to mimic the annual length of plant habits, blue and red balanced light is used when the plant is in its
nutritional stage, and a relatively high amount of red light is used during the flowering stage.
LED grow lights are green because they contain no mercury or other toxic substances. All high-quality LEDs are guaranteed by RoHS certification.
The LED grow light is perfect for any size of space. It can be used as the sole light source for closet grow tents; hang in large greenhouses as supplemental lighting; or placed in multi-level, highly vertical environments.
What Light Spectrum is Best for Growing Plants?
Each plant requires a different spectrum, and each stage of the plant requires a different spectrum. Due to the mechanism of photosynthesis, some plants will grow better when they get more light of a certain color.
What Spectrum is Best for Cannabis?
An adequate spectrum of cannabis light is key to a thriving cannabis plant garden, and different colors of the spectrum have different uses in the growth and development of cannabis plants.
Weed is very sensitive to light. You can adjust the color, frequency and intensity for each growth stage.
Ultraviolet Spectrum (100-400 nm)
UVB lights are located in the lowest part of the spectrum, just because you can’t see UVB doesn’t mean it’s not useful on the cannabis spectrum.
Small amounts of UVA in vegetables and some UVB in the last few weeks of cannabis flowering may be beneficial for bud potency.
Blue Light (400 – 500nm)
The blue part of the cannabis spectrum is close to UVA, right on the invisible border.
Blue light is necessary for plants to grow strong leaves and branches during their nutritional cycle. It makes plants compact and dense, with larger, stronger and healthier leaves, and improves their ability to synthesize energy.
Green Light (500-600 nm)
The green color is between red and blue. It triggers photosynthesis in the lower leaf layer.
Available studies show some benefits of green color in cannabis cultivation.
The green color may lead to stem elongation. Therefore, it is useful in vegetables but is best avoided when flowering.
Red Light (600-700 nm)
The red light from the far end of the spectrum is dimmed when viewed with our eyes.
Plants use red light to recognize day or night. During sunrise and sunset, when the wavelength is longer, small amounts of infrared light pass through the atmosphere.
Promote the photosynthesis of red light and prolong the flowering period. The combination of these factors, abundant nutrition and a wider maturation time will only improve the yield you end up with.
Far Red Light (700-850 nm)
Far-red light has two major benefits. On the one hand, it is almost as effective as green in getting through the leaf layer and promoting photosynthesis.
On the other hand, this part of the spectrum is very dark. This perceived threat triggers a defense mechanism that encourages it to focus on growth in order to get more sunlight.
What Light Spectrum is Best for Tomatoes?
Signify’s plant expert Charlotte Pijnenburg has studied the flavor of tomatoes.
There are several spectra that may have a beneficial effect on the taste of tomatoes. Blue light is known to positively affect taste and smell, while the far-red spectrum can improve the taste of the fruit.
However, far-red increases the length of the stems, and blue light can have the opposite effect and decrease the length of the stems. By combining blue and far red, we may get the best of both worlds.
In the experiment, Charlotte’s team looked at four different spectra.
1. Control spectrum: Signify’s a standard red, blue, and light blue spectrum, optimized for tomatoes.
2. Control spectrum plus additional far red.
3. High blue spectrum, where some of the red light is replaced by blue.
4. High blue plus far-red spectrum, where we added both additional blue and additional far red.
All four treatments resulted in very good-tasting tomatoes.
Do Indoor Plants Need Full Spectrum?
Just like plants that grow outdoors in the sun, indoor plants grow best under full spectrum LED lights. This light produces a balance of cool and warm light to maximize plant growth, and it makes a world of difference.
But full-spectrum may not be the best lighting solution for indoor growing. Adjustable-spectrum seems to offer more power, while fixed-spectrum fixtures offer more simplicity.
In some crops, blue light helps with nutrient levels and coloring, and a higher ratio of red to far-red light helps
with leaf size and flowering. For cannabis, adding UV exposure may increase THC levels, resulting in more efficient bud production.
Auxgrow FC06 series, LED adjustable spectrum grow light, which enhances each phase of the spectrum. It is designed with UV light, enhanced blue light and red light. The UV and red and blue light can be adjusted independently. This is where the custom LED grow lights come into play. Adjustable spectrum can assist you in getting higher yields and more profits from your cannabis cultivation.
UV light offers several potential benefits for cannabis plants, including increased cannabinoid production (THC), better resin production, and enhanced resistance to pests and bacteria.
Fortunately, there are not many downsides to using UV light. If you don’t manage your exposure adequately, you may find the following problems: over-exposure can hinder growth, the potential for lower CBD levels (more research is needed as it depends on whether we use UVB or UVA radiation and at what dose), and a low return on investment.
You can use UV light for all types of indoor cannabis cultivation. Some plant grow lights will emit some level of
UVA, but if you want to maximize potential gains, you will need to purchase a dedicated UV light.
But then buying a dedicated UV plant light separately can reduce grow space usage, increase installation costs, hidden costs such as electricity, etc.
Nowadays, some quality plant light suppliers have researched and produced LED plant lights with adjustable spectrum.Custom LED grow lights are customized with the spectrum, push-button switch regulation, and the number of light beads according to customer’s needs.
Adjustable spectrum technology also gives you better control over your final product. It can help you:
Increase flower weight
Increase flower density
Enhance color and structure
Change plant height
Change the spacing between nodes
Custom adjustable spectrum adjusts the amount of spectrum emitted by the fixture, reducing the amount of energy wasted by the fixture and thus the amount of heat generated. In other words, this facilitates a reduction in the need for additional cooling measures in your growing environment and can significantly reduce utility bills.
For indoor growing, it’s important to choose full spectrum LED lights to maximize plant growth. But it may not be the best ideal lighting solution for indoor growing.
LED adjustable spectrum grow light offers tremendous benefits for both humans and plants. They provide plants with everything they need to flourish and grow healthily and save growers a lot of money while giving them complete control over the spectrum of the light fixture.
For your own custom, contact us for more information on customization.
What are your thoughts on the full and adjustable spectrum? Drop us a line.