Last Updated on August 19, 2022 by The Tutor
Grow Lights for Seedlings
A seedling is a young plant that grows from a seed. The development of seedling begins with the appropriate temperature, light, and oxygen. Choosing the right grow lights for seedlings during its initial stages of growth will be critical in the plant’s early development. Seedlings depend upon the perfect light source and food until it is large enough for own leaves to start making food through photosynthesis.
Growing seedlings indoors is always challenging and light is one of the most important factors that help in growing seedlings. Most of the homes don’t have enough natural lighting for seedling so we have to rely on artificial lighting. But selecting the right lighting is not an easy task and it is important to choose a correct light system for the seedling.
Here are some necessary things we should know about selecting the right lighting :
- Some Lights available in the market help in reaching the flowering stage and some are suited for certain crops. The specific wattage you will choose should also depend upon the type of plant you are growing.
- You should buy specific LED grow lights that are specifically designed for growing plants indoor.
- You should choose light according to your grow area.
- The light should release low heat otherwise plants will get affected by it.
Seedlings Under Grow Lights
The basics of the indoor lighting system:
The right color temperature – A light color is also known as color temperature, the blue end is for cool light and the red end is for warm light. Sunlight contains the full spectrum of light, including all the colors of the rainbow.
Choosing the full spectrum light is essential that produce the balance of cool and warm light which helps to regulate the plant growth.
The right light intensity – The intensity of light that a plant receives is determined by the brightness of the bulb and the distance between the plant and light source. Each plant needs a different light intensity.
Most of the seedlings grown in an indoor garden need a high rate of light intensity usually. So the light should be placed nearer to the leaves.
The right exposure to light – It doesn’t matter what type of plants are you growing, they need rest too. Plants usually respirate in dark, this is an important phase of their growth process. The ratio of rest time to growth time affects the growth rate and some other biological processes too.
Some plants are short-day plants so they need light for less than 12 hours per day, some plants are long-day so they need light for 14-18 hours each day and some plants are neutral-day they require only 8-10 hours light per day.
Examples of seedlings where grow lights are critical
Pepper Seedlings – Pepper plant seeds are flat and round and can be of white, cream and yellow in color. They take a long time to grow and require a long growing season as their germination process is generally slow.
For planting pepper seeds there is no need to do anything special just lay the seeds on the soil and gently push them down. Cover the surface with a plastic sheet to ensure that the soil remains moist this will boost up the germination process.
Pepper seedlings need to be watered consistently but not like soggy soil. They require enough lighting so as soon as germination starts a grow light should be placed a few inches above the pepper seedlings and keep them on for 14-16 hours per day. Generally, pepper seeds took 4-5 months to harvest.
Tomato Seedlings – Tomato plant seeds are oval in shape. They take a short time to grow i.e. 5-10 days, as their germination process is quick. It is easier to plant tomato seeds, just sprinkle the seeds over the soil surface and gently cover them with soil so that they can make good contact with soil easily. Place the container at a warm place and make sure the soil is wet enough for the better germination process.
Keep watering them consistently and when the seedlings grow up, the requirement of light becomes critical. Keep the grow lights near the seedlings and keep rotating the seedlings to ensure equal growth from all sides.
Types of Grow Lights for Seedlings
Incandescent bulbs – These types of bulbs include halogen bulbs and some other types like CFL. They emit a good amount of red light but a poor source of blue light which means that the plant will grow more thin and taller.
They also produce a lot of heat and the plants grow near the light may burn so they are not good for growing seedlings.
Fluorescent bulbs – These bulbs produce more light as compared to incandescent bulbs so they are considered as an inexpensive light source for the seedlings.
Full spectrum fluorescent produced a cool and warm combination of light which replicates natural spectrum which helps in the even growing of seedlings.
LED Bulbs – Over the past few years, LEDs have become more popular among indoor seedling growers. They consume a small amount of energy as compare to other lights. They also do not produce much heat which affects seedlings growth.
They than fluorescent bulbs and although they cost more to purchase, the save more money in energy long term. LED bulbs are now the most commonly used grow lights for seedlings.
Top 3 LED Grow Lights for Seedlings
Phlizon Newest 600W LED plant to grow light
- Actual power- 100W
- Material- UV protection and fireproof PC cover
- Weight – 4.3lbs
- Input- AC100-240V, 50-60Hz
- Double switch- VEG button for the germination stage and BLOOM button for the flowering stage
- Full-Spectrum for plant growth.
- Lifespan- > 50000hr
- More coverage
- Produces less heat
- Service warranty- 2 years
King Plus 1000W LED grow light
- Weight- 6.39 pounds.
- 100pcs Dual-chip 10W LEDs.
- LED angle- 120 degrees.
- Input voltage- AC85-265V.
- Avg. power draw- 185W.
- Dual switch- VEG for seedling growth and BLOOM for the flowering stage.
- Full-spectrum for plant growth.
- Advanced cooling system.
- Energy-saving technology.
- Professional service- 3 years warranty and free return for 90 days.
BESTVA DC Series 2000W LED light
- Weight- 10.36 pounds.
- LED angle- 120 degrees.
- Avg. power draw- 390W.
- 200pcs Dual-chip 10W Bridgelux LED.
- Input voltage- AC85-265W.
- BESTVA newest technology- Much brighter and more efficient.
- Dual switch- VEG for growing and BLOOM for flowering.
- Powerful cooling system.
- Core coverage area.
- Professional service- 3 years warranty with 90 days satisfaction or return guarantee.
Best LED Light Bulbs for Seedlings
If your budget does not have room for the LED grow light fixtures featured above, then you can use special LED bulbs for grow lights for seedlings. These options below may be best suited for you if you are just growing seedlings as a hobby.
This is a nice starter grow lamp for anyone who is just getting into gardening. The bulbs can be replaced which is a nice feature. It provides the full spectrum of light while using just 60 watts of power.
This is a 3 pack of reliable LED grow light bulbs that you can use in any existing lamp you have at home. Each bulb uses just 9 watts of power but yields the same light as a 100 watt incandescent bulb