Artificial lighting for indoor plants
Do I need additional lighting for plants? Those involved in their cultivation will definitely give a positive answer. After all, light plays a huge role in the life of flowers. Without it, they can die. If it is not enough, then it is difficult for green spaces to receive and absorb the amount of energy necessary for effective growth..
- Different plants – different needs
- How much light will be enough
- Light source specifications
- Types of Lighting
- The rule of the three “F”
Fortunately, this issue was resolved 20 years ago. The advent of artificial lighting devices (the so-called LEDs) helped home flower gardeners get the best results in their joyful business. With its help, it has become possible to meet the needs of a wide variety of cultures. And they can be diametrically different. This article will discuss the general rules of this important process..
Different plants – different needs
There are no flowers that could develop in complete darkness. Lighting for indoor plants is a must! The difference is only in its quantity. As a rule, the day should last 12-16 hours and no matter due to what it is supported – the sun, artificial lamps, or both. There are species that easily adapt to changing conditions, but there are those that require only certain lighting. It does not need flowers resting at night. But there are those who want to take extra sunbaths even in the winter season.
The following factors influence the good growth of green spaces:
- proper watering;
- optimal temperature;
- necessary air humidity;
- timely top dressing;
- adequate lighting.
To achieve the latter, artificial lighting for indoor plants will help. But it is suitable only for those who have undergone adaptation to dim lighting (begonias, gloxinia, and central nations). Some plants need to get used to such light. For example, orchids will take about a year..
How much light will be enough
If we talk about the quality of natural light, then it is quite difficult to determine. Why? Lighting, which is bright from a human point of view, can be perceived differently by colors, because window glass filters ultraviolet rays. But if they are not more than 2 meters from the window, then there will be enough light for good growth.
It is also important that lamps for plant lighting harmoniously fit into the overall interior of the room. Currently, there are devices on sale in different appearance and shape. Some of them are practically invisible, while others contribute to the design of the rooms. When choosing them for your home, pay attention to what effect they will have on plants. For example, placing the backlight below, you will make it absolutely useless for handsome men.
Light source specifications
Each such source of natural or artificial origin emits energy. Its value is determined by the wavelength. Waves coming from the same source can be of different lengths. Together they form a spectrum that ranges from 300 to 2500 nanometers. For comparison, the human eye can perceive waves with a length of 380-780 nanometers. Using a glass prism, you can divide the beam of light into different wavelengths.
When choosing LED lighting for plants, it is necessary to take into account the above characteristics. If you make the wrong choice, the result may be negative. The fact is that deciduous plants need one spectrum of illumination, and flowering plants need another.
Types of Lighting
In the trading network you can find two types of such devices – incandescent lamps and fluorescent lamps. The first are divided into several types. Their kit includes special equipment. Since incandescent lamps radiate heat, care must be taken not to burn leaves and flowers. If it is not possible to buy special lamps, then you can use ordinary 60 W.
The advantage of fluorescent lamps is that they hardly heat up. Therefore, artificial illumination of plants with their help can be produced at a small distance from plants (15 cm).
1. Incandescent bulbs
Gas discharge lamps can be metal halide (160 W, 6000 hours) or sodium (400 W, 12000 hours). They are usually used when lighting a small number of colors. A lamp with a power of at least 150 W is fixed above the plants at a height of 1.5 meters. The device must be equipped with a switch that regulates the intensity of lighting, and a timer that automatically records the light time. If you hang such a lamp over succulents and cacti, then soon you will enjoy their amazing colors..
2. Fluorescent tubes
Such lamps can emit warm and cool light, which correspond to the red and blue components of the spectrum. The golden mean is an approach to natural light. If you use lamps of cool white light, which is very far from natural, then it is better to combine two types of lamps. It should be borne in mind that the radiation power in them at the edges is less than in the center. Remember that growing plants under artificial lighting using such devices is not suitable for flowers with a height of more than 1 meter. Perhaps they will need to be combined with incandescent lamps and it is advisable to change them every year.
The rule of the three “F”
Plant development occurs through three processes in which light plays a huge role..
- Photosynthesis – a red spectrum of light is involved in it. As a result of the chemical process, chlorophyll is produced, which affects the metabolism in the leaves..
- Photomorphogenesis determines the growth and development of plants, which depend on the wavelength. With a lack of waves of the blue spectrum, underdevelopment of the leaves and extension of the stems occur. Therefore, lighting for aquarium plants, as for many others, should combine the waves of two spectra – red and blue.
- Photoperiodism takes into account the reaction of plants to the ratio of dark and light periods. The flowering of some does not depend on the intensity of light, others need a short daylight hours, while others require a certain amount of light hours and only at a specific time of day.
If you choose the right lighting for your favorite indoor pets, you can always rejoice at their beautiful appearance! Isn’t that what we want?