From Energy Efficiency Pros
If your home has an indoor garden, you know that artificial lighting is all-important in the trade. With or without natural sunlight, you just can’t pass on grow lights without risking your plants’ growth and overall health. With the vastness of technology both current and past, there are just too many options to choose from. Among these, however, one in particular stands out at the cutting edge – the LED light bulb.
LED light bulbs are a relatively recent addition to the array of lamp options, with a lot of advantages over their predecessors. While they might cost a pretty penny at first, they more than make up for it in the long run. Here are some reasons why:
They’re the Most Cost-Efficient of the Bunch
Despite LED lights being pricier upon purchase, they cost a lot less to maintain and provide much more bang for your buck than older bulb types can. To start, wattage for LEDs is a lot less compared to its competitors at about only 6-8 watts per bulb. Also, typical LED light bulb lasts an average of 50,000 hours. That’s at least three times as long as the next best thing – fluorescent lights – at only 8,000 hours. This means that you pay much less for much more light, and who doesn’t want that?
They Have Superior Color Variety
For plants to grow, they need more than just one color of light. You need blue light for foliage and vegetative growth and red light for flowering or fruiting. A balance of these wavelengths is necessary for your plants to grow as best as they can. LED lights are available in these colors and can be configured later on, fulfilling your plants’ light needs excellently. While older bulb types may also have color variations, they just can’t offer you the flexibility and variety that LED technology can.
They Emit Less Heat
There are a number of reasons why it’s invaluable that you use lights that emit as little heat as possible in indoor gardening. For one, plants are particularly sensitive and vulnerable to heat. The adverse effects of high temperatures on plants include leaf burn and less yield, among others. Another reason is that optimal use of space is the hallmark of indoor gardening. Using higher-temperature bulbs, however, require that you place them further away from the plants, forcing you to use more space.
LED lights emit a lot less heat compared to older bulb types. Incandescent bulbs emit an average of 85 BTUs an hour, while fluorescent bulbs emit 30. LED light bulbs, on the other hand, emit only 3.4 BTUs an hour. There really is no comparison.
They Come in More Shapes and Sizes
When you’re limited in space, it’s vital that you have as much control over this space as possible. LED light bulbs come in sizes much smaller than older bulb types, giving you much more flexibility and control in designing your lighting systems.
Take color configuration, for example. You’re going to need a specific blue-red-green ratio in your lighting system. Using smaller bulbs allows for an unprecedented control over the amounts of each color in your lighting. When you have an overall amount of light in mind, working with small LED bulbs makes for precision in your color ratio.
Smaller bulbs in your grow light system also let you place them in more specific positions around the plant. For example, you may want to place them in strategic spots so that all parts of the leaves are illuminated sufficiently. You may also install the bulbs in a creative pattern, making design more than just strategy. There really is no limit on positioning possibilities with the bulb sizing LEDs provide.
The times are a-changin’, and LED light bulbs are quickly becoming the brighter future for indoor gardening.
This blog was originally published on August 22, 2016 on eepros.com. It has been edited for republication with permission from the author.