How to choose a Grow Light
One way to get off to a great start is to start seeds indoors. An even better way is to add grow lights to the equation! So since this blog is all about how to get more for either less time or less money, this is a great idea!
1) BUDGET: Set aside the maximum amount of money you are willing to spend on a grow light. Knowing your budget will make choosing easier, but if you want a healthy indoor garden, try not to go with the cheapest option. Sometimes a more expensive option yields a healthier plant. Grow lights range in price from the cost of a small kitchen appliance to several thousand dollars.
2) TYPE OF GROW LIGHT:
a. Incandescent lights – used for single plants.
b. Fluorescent lights – used for seedlings.
c. Metal halide lights – emit white light, which works well with plants that normally grow better outdoors, such as vegetable plants.
d. High-pressure sodium lights – are beneficial for flowering and fruiting plants that would naturally grow taller.
e. LED lights – are experimental and may or may not grow healthy plants.
3) BULB LIFETIME: Read the product descriptions carefully to find out how efficient the grow lights you’re considering are and how long each usually lasts before the bulb needs to be changed.
4) COLOR TEMPERATURE: Find out the color temperature, measured in degrees Kelvin, for grow lights you’re considering. What you choose depends on the needs of your plants. The seedlings of some common plants need cooler light, and older plants need warmer light.
a. Higher Kelvin temperatures are associated with lights that look cooler and are represented by the color blue. (seedlings)
b. Lower Kelvin temperatures are associated with lights that look warmer and are represented by the color red. (older plants)
5) LUMENS: Go with higher lumens if possible. The number of lumens indicates the amount of light that the grow light is capable of emitting. The more light the grow light emits, the better, so go with the light that emits the highest number of lumens within your price range.
6) SPACE: Check to be sure the grow light fits in the space you have available. Some grow lights are pretty large, and since a grow light can be quite an investment, do the measuring and make sure it will fit nicely before bringing it home.
I would love to know what lights you use since this will be the first year I use them myself!