Anyone who has a lot of houseplants in their home will sooner or later wonder if the plants are getting enough light to thrive. This question comes up especially in winter when little sunlight is available. But it can also be very dark in some corners of the apartment all year round, so the purchase of plant lights is always worth considering.
What light spectrum do your indoor plants need?
In order to find a suitable and, in the best case, inexpensive plant lamp for plants, it is important to understand certain terms and processes. Plants need sunlight for photosynthesis, which in turn is essential for plant survival and development. From the full color spectrum of sunlight, plants mainly utilize the red and blue light spectrum. The red light spectrum is particularly needed for flower and fruit development, while the blue light color is responsible for general plant growth. A suitable light source for plants does not only have to have these two color spectra and thus be a special plant light, because light sources such as fluorescent tubes with so-called daylight white, pure white, neutral white and cold white also cover the spectra that plants need. Our normal light bulbs in our living room are mostly warm white and therefore not suitable.
Buy the right plant lights
Inexpensive lights from the hardware store or the Internet also fulfill the purpose of a professional plant light, you just have to pay attention to the correct information. The watt specification of a lamp describes the radiant power. Depending on the type of plant and the existing lighting conditions in the room, the illuminant should have 20 to 50 watts. The following applies: the higher the wattage, the more light is produced. The more light, the better the growth of the plants. Kelvin describes the perceived light temperature. Daylight has more than 5,000 Kelvin and lights with temperatures above 4,000 are similar and therefore suitable for plants. Light is emitted in electromagnetic waves and measured in nanometers. Wavelengths of about 380 to 780 nanometers are useful for plant photosynthesis. Lux is the name of the illuminance. A houseplant needs an average of 1,000 lux. One lux corresponds to luminous flux of one lumen per square meter. It is the unit of luminous flux, i.e. it describes the radiant power of the light source. About 2,500 lumens are required per plant, the same applies here: the more that are emitted, the more the plants grow.
Use plant lights
In winter, the plant lights should ideally be switched on for 8-12 hours during the day. A timer can also help you automate the lighting from plant lights. The plant lights must be installed above the plants with enough distance so that the leaves do not burn. The further away the lamp is, the less light intensity it gets. The more lumens, the further the plant can be from the lamp. The distance between the plant and the lamp should usually be 30-40 centimeters.
Signs that you need a grow light
When houseplants aren't getting enough light, they show a variety of signs. Especially in the dark season or during winter, it is important to ensure sufficient light intensity. Plants that receive too little light over a long period of time often develop worse than those that receive sufficient light. The growth rate may be slower, the plant may branch less and remain smaller overall. The foliage can also change: the leaves can become lighter and thinner because they produce less chlorophyll. In addition, it may happen that the leaves are deformed or stunted. The absence of flowers is also a sign of a lack of light. Plants with too little light are often more susceptible to diseases and pests because their immune system is weakened. In order to promote the growth and health of plants, it is important to provide them with sufficient light. Special plant lamps can be used effectively here to cover the light needs of the plants. Additional light can increase the effectiveness of cultivation and support your own plants in their development.
Plant light = generally more leaf mass
It should be noted that a plant does not stop developing in winter due to a high supply of light all year round. As a result, many nutrients are required for the production of shoots, leaves and leaf green even in the cold seasons. Fertilize your green plants under grow lights at least 2 times a month throughout the year. You can find a suitable fertilizer for your plants among the FARBIO® organic liquid fertilizers .
You can find out more about indoor plants in our Plants AZ !