There was a time in the past where fluorescent grow lights weren’t of much use to marijuana growers. They didn’t have quite the amount of output that people would like for their size. Compact fluorescent lights make them a great option, though, and the full light spectrum is used on your plants, allowing a new level of growth.
For small scale, compact grows, these are a popular options that make it easy to grow inside of small rooms and tents that otherwise might not be able to support quality lighting equipment. They don’t produce much heat, can be placed as close to your plants as you want, and are very efficient when it comes to power consumption.
That efficiency can vary from light to light, obviously. The higher end fluorescent grow lights will deliver 75-98 lumens per Watt of power that is consumed. Bulbs in the Kelvin range of 3000k to 2700k provide a great deal of light that is in the red and yellow range, which is the absolute best light for the flowering stage of growth. In comparison, those bulbs that offer a light in the range of 5000 to 6500k, blue light is more prevalent and is what is most important for the flowering stage of the growth process.
Compact fluorescent grow lights also provide a low level of heat that means your grow room can stay at a safe temperature without having to pull out hot air and spend much more money on electric costs. That low level of heat makes them very popular for smaller grows, when compared to the hot HPS lamps that have to stay a great deal of distance away from the plants. HID lights might still be better suited for large grows that need a lot of depth penetration for the light, but anyone else can certainly benefit from them.
How To Choose A Light
These kinds of fluorescent light bulbs for growing are not only cheaper than most HID lights, they’re much more flexible and mobile when it comes to moving lights when you need them in different positions. The general idea when you buy fluorescent grow lights should be to purchase one that has the maximum amount of Wattage that you can fit into your grow room in order to get the most out of the usable light that is available in your grow room. Depending on your own grow room, you might even have to use several different lights to get the maximum amount of coverage.
Currently, the smallest compact fluorescent lights come in 15 and 26 watt options, which aren’t very good for growing marijuana, unless you had a large number of them. The middle of the road fluorescent lights are available in sizes such as 85, 68, 65, and 42 wattage, with are of great use to growers who do not want to worry about increasing the levels of heat in their grow room. Of course, high wattage options are available as well, in sizes like 125 watts and 300 watts, although that might be too much for some people.
-A 125 watt light, for example, can include a reflector of 480mm in length and put out 5000 lumens. This kind of power also makes it easy to use both red and blue light thanks to the ability to output 2,700k and 6,400k lighting. That is a powerful light in a small package that others in the same range just can’t compete with.
-A 300 watt light can offer an incredible amount more. With that light, you can ensure 12,500 lumens are being emitted to your plants. With the same 6,400k and 2,700k, you can have the perfect match for both flowering and vegetation.
As far as the shape of the lights that you should be looking for, spiral fluorescent light bulbs are best for emitting light to your plants, and the reflector will make up for the strange shape. T5 and T8 style tubes provide your plants with a full range of light in the visible spectrum and there are also eco-lights that are high-powered lamps that can acts a supplemental light source for your more high powered lights if you just need a little extra help.
Make sure to also check out the lifespan of the lights. The best fluorescent grow lights will last for around 10,000 hours before you have to change them.
How Many Do You Need
Knowing how many you need to buy is another story. Hanging lights from the ceiling is an easy way to give yourself a good bit of flexibility and is the most common way of handling them. You’ll need to take a look at the size of your grow area to figure this out. Most small plants require 3000 lumens , but you would be better off going for closer to 7 or 10,000 lumens per square foot.
How to properly grow plants using floresent grow lights
The Final Word
At the end of the day, fluorescent grow lights have a lot of advantages. LED lights have taken over the grows of many people, but the fact remains that fluorescent grow lights are the industry standard. They are much more efficient than most other options and will help you give your plants exactly what they need, giving you better yields than ever.