The benefits of indoor grow lights can be hard to ignore. There’s no better way to grow a large amount of stocky seedlings, than by using innovative and affordable indoor grow lights. If you’re growing flowering plants such as hibiscus, citrus, African violets or orchids, indoor grow lights will help to keep them blooming year round. You can also have a wintertime harvest of salad greens and herbs by utilizing this type of lighting.
How to determine the needs of your Plants
The intensity of light that a plant will receive is determined by the bulb wattage and also by how close a plant is placed to a light source. All plants will differ when it comes to their need for light intensity. Usually, plants that are native to humid, tropical or shady forests will not require as much light as a plant that grows in sunny and dry climates.
The majority of flowering houseplants such as begonias and African violets are happy being ten to twelve inches away from a source of light. Many flowering plants such as citrus, gardenias or orchids will require a higher light intensity.
When using fluorescent lights for your plants, be sure to rotate your plants every week. The light that is produced by these types of indoor grow lights are more intense at the center of the bulb. Also, be sure to replace any fluorescent tube when the end darkens. This means that the tube is too old and the light output tends to be less than half of what it puts out when it’s new. Cleaning your indoor grow lights every month can help to ensure that they’re putting out an adequate amount of light. Dirt and dust can decrease the amount of light that’s emitted, which can cause plants to become stunted or not flower.
Regardless of the types of plants you decide to grow indoors, be sure that you give them a rest. When it becomes dark a plant will respirate, which is an important part of the growing process.
Different Light Requirements Based on type of Plant
When it comes to the amount of light a plant needs, they are usually divided into a few different categories: day neutral, long day or short day.
Begonias, azaleas and chrysanthemums are all short day plants and they will thrive on less than twelve hours of light each day.
A long day plant will require a minimum of fourteen to eighteen hours of light every day. The majority of garden flowers and veggies are considered long day plants and should they not receive enough light they can become leggy and pale.
Plants that are considered day neutral plants include African violets, geraniums, foliage pants and coleus. These types of plants are typically satisfied with eight to twelve hours of light each day.
Houseplants in Bloom
One of the easiest flowering houseplants to grow is the African violet. This plant blooms year round with little effort. You can choose from hundreds of forms and varieties, some with white or ruffled edged blooms and variegated foliage. This type of plant thrives in filtered sunlight and warm conditions. Water carefully and avoid wetting the leaves in order to prevent unsightly brown spots.
This plant is also very easy to propagate, just cut off some leaves and root it in wet potting soil. If you have a sunny windowsill for this little guy you can expect your plant to bloom constantly. They are also considered very versatile and bloom in almost every color to match the décor in your home. The soil must be kept evenly moist. This plant needs around 75 degrees in order to thrive.
If you want a flowering plant that can add a little touch of the tropics to your home, purchase some tropical hibiscus. The huge blooms grow up to about eight inches in diameter, on an upright shrubby plant that can be trained to grow as a tree. Unfortunately, the individual blooms only last a day or two. However, this plant blooms freely from spring to fall. The soil must be kept evenly moist. You will need to use a grow light in order for this plant to thrive.
The flowering maple produces crepe-paper like blooms in yellow, pink, red or orange. You can prune this plant back to give it a shrubby look or train it to grow upright like a tree. Commonly, uneven watering can cause flowers to fall off, so be sure to closely monitor watering needs if you notice blooms dropping. Almost constantly in bloom, the flowering maple is also fast growing. It enjoys bright sunlight, evenly moist soil and a growing environment around seventy degrees.
Featuring clover-like triangular purple leaves and a constant show of white or pink blooms, the oxalis is a beautiful and charming plant that is sure to be the focal point in any room. This plant grows from small bulbs, which can be easily divided if the plant quickly outgrows its pot. The soil must be kept moist and the plant should be placed in medium to bright sunlight for at least six hours a day.
A beautiful plant that tolerates low humidity and low light and one that’s also easy to care for is the peace lily. This beautiful plant consists of spoon shaped white spathe with creamy white flowers. Most varieties will bloom all year, but most will produce heavier blooms in the summer months. The plant’s large leaves work to create a tropical atmosphere. The peace lily thrives in low to bright sunlight and requires evenly moist soil.
Jasmin plants are very easy to grow, they just need plenty of moisture and sunlight. They produce fragrant white or pink blooms on vining plants. This plant has a reputation for being one of the most fragrant of any houseplant.
The clivia lily, also known as the kaffir lily is a houseplant that typically blooms in the winter, producing large yellow or orange tubular flowers. This plant will only bloom once it has been exposed to dry, cool conditions, which means it needs lower temperatures in the winter. Even when not in bloom this plant is still attractive thanks to the deep green leaves aligned in a single plane.