Cannabis is a thirsty plant and requires plenty of light to grow properly. But that presents a problem for indoor growers – sunlight doesn’t penetrate most windows in the average home and artificial lighting can be costly. Luckily, there are other options for indoor growers who want to keep their costs down, reduce their carbon footprint, and avoid harsh chemical smells that could alert neighbors to their presence. Check out this article if you are curious about growing cannabis with LED grow lights! LEDs — “light-emitting diode” — are semiconductors that produce light when an electric current passes through them. These diodes can be manufactured in different colors depending on what wavelength they emit when operating.
What are the different types of LED grow lights?
Many different types of LED grow lights are available today to buy grow lights for Cannabis, but they generally fall into two categories: Full-Spectrum and Ultraviolet (UV) LEDs. Of these, Full-Spectrum LEDs are in much more common use these days. Full-Spectrum LEDs provide a light spectrum similar to the sun’s, which is necessary for photosynthesis, the process that cannabis uses to produce buds. Ultraviolet (UV) LEDs have become more popular in the last few years, particularly for the flowering stage. UV light encourages the development of flowers, which is essential for producing buds. For the vegetative phase of cannabis growth, it’s best to use a light similar to the sun’s spectrum. For the flowering stage, lights that emit UV are best. Both LED types can maximise yields throughout the entire cultivation cycle.
How do LEDs work to grow cannabis?
Much like a plant would naturally do if left outside, LEDs produce light in one wavelength, which can then be absorbed by other substances to create different wavelengths. In a cannabis cultivation setting, this phenomenon is used to encourage the growth of buds and flowers while discouraging the growth of weeds. Cannabis plants naturally produce their light in the red and blue wavelengths thanks to a chemical reaction known as photosynthesis. That light is what powers the plant’s growth, and the plant harnesses it through the use of chlorophyll. Chlorophyll is what gives leaves their green colour, and it’s also responsible for absorbing photons from the sun and transforming them into chemical energy for the plant. These chlorophyll molecules (specifically the chlorophyll a, b, c, and d types) are what LEDs are designed to imitate.
Pros of growing cannabis with LEDs
Many of the benefits associated with LEDs only apply to indoor growers. For example, sunlight can also supplement indoor light at certain times of the year, but it doesn’t penetrate through many windows. The advantages of choosing LEDs for indoor growing over traditional lighting include: – Reduced heat: LEDs produce less heat than other types of lights, which reduces the risk of fire and improves indoor air quality thanks to reduced amount of excess CO2. – Ease of installation: LEDs are lightweight and don’t require special wiring or mounting. This makes them a good option for renters or people who plan to move their setup at any point in the future. – Longer lifespan: LEDs can last between 50,000 and 100,000 hours, much longer than the lifespan of other types of grow lights. – Reduced energy costs: LEDs use less energy to produce the same amount of light as other types of lights.
Cons of growing cannabis with LEDs
LED lights are generally a good choice for indoor growers who want to save money on electricity bills, but they aren’t perfect. Here are a few things to watch out for when using LED lights for cannabis cultivation: – Lower yields: Because LED lights are more energy-efficient, they also produce less light. This means that indoor growers will produce less yield for the same amount of time. This can be a problem if you’re trying to grow a lot of cannabis for the market. – Less red light: One of the downsides of indoor growing is that the light from LEDs is much bluer than from the sun. That’s bad because plants require more red light during their vegetative phase than blue light. Growers can combat this by adding extra red light bulbs to their setup or supplementing with natural light. – Higher upfront cost: While LEDs generally save energy in the long run, they cost more up front. That means growers will have a larger initial investment to produce the same amount of light as growers using other types of lights.
Overall, LEDs are a good option for indoor growers who want to save money on energy bills and reduce the fire risk. That being said, LEDs aren’t perfect for every situation, and each grower should do their research to find the best type of LED grow light for the specific needs of their cannabis garden! Outdoor growers can also benefit from LEDs, but they should pair them with another source of light to ensure proper photosynthesis. The sun produces light in all wavelengths, so it’s a good source for supplemental light during the plant’s vegetative phase.