Last Updated on August 28, 2022 by Sam
If you’re into indoor gardening, you should know that using grow lights is one key to growing successfully. One of the best grow lights to use is the LED lights and another important criterion is the grow light hanging distance. So, if you’re wondering what LED light distance from the canopy is ideal, we’ve got the answer for you here.
If you position some grow lights too low to your plants’ canopy, they might burn your plants. On the other hand, if you hang them too high, they will grow weak and get stretched because they aren’t receiving adequate light intensity.
This is why you must be enlightened on the right hanging distance from your plants’ canopy. So, let’s get right into it.
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We have various grow lights in the market and you need to know exactly the type you have and their features. We have light-emitting diodes (LED) lights, high-intensity discharge light (HID), fluorescent lights, and so on.
Each of these lights has its different characteristics. Some emit more heat and some emit lesser heat. Also, some of these grow lights offer a better spectrum than the other, and so on. But generally, LED grow light is known to emit minimal heat. This doesn’t mean LED lights can be hung very close to your plants as their spectrum can be very overwhelming and may cause your plant to bleach.
Each of these lights needs to be positioned at different heights from your plants’ canopy. So, let’s take a look at the LED light distance from your plants’ canopy.
Know The Right LED Light Distance From Your Plants’ Canopy
Now, let’s look at how close your LED grow lights should be to your plants. It may be a little tricky deciding what distance your LED light should be from your plants’ canopy. This is because all the various LED light brands vary.
However, you can look through and follow the manufacturers’ manual first to see how your plants fair. After trying the manufacturers’ LED light distance instruction and you feel there’s a need to readjust your light, you can go ahead and do so.
But let’s take a look at some general tips and requirements you can use in deciding the LED light distance from your plants’ canopy:
- A general rule advises you to position your LED grow light 12 to 30 inches from your plant canopy.
- LED light distance also varies with your grow light wattage and how powerful the light source is. A higher light wattage that has a powerful light source should be hung far from the plants’ canopy and vice versa.
- The type of plants (either low light or high light plant requirement) will determine the distance of your LED grow light. Low light requiring plants can have their light placed high above the canopy and high requiring plants can have their light placed close to the plant.
- Another criterion to deciding how to hang your LED grow light is reflective walls. Using reflective walls will reflect the light back to your plants thus limiting light loss from placing the grow light high. Therefore, you can position your LED light higher and not worry about light loss because they will mostly be reflected back to within your grow room or tent.
How Far Should LED Grow Lights Be From Plants In Each Growth Stage
Again, you should have in mind that when it comes to LED light placements, there’s no general rule. Different LED lights have their style and manufacturers’ instruction which should be tried first. So, we can now go into how far LED lights placement should be for each growth stage.
For various plant stages, LED light placement will differ as your plant transition. If you’re using dimmable LED lights, you can simply dim the intensity for different stages. However, if you’re not making use of a dimmable LED grow light, then you have to adjust the heights as your plant transitions to different stages.
So here are the LED Light placements suggestions for your various plant stages:
1. LED Light Distance From Plants’ Canopy For Seedling Stage
The seedling stage of a plant is its most fragile stage. Thus, they will require a gentler light approach. This implies they require a lesser light intensity at their early stage and should be placed higher from the seedlings canopy.
We recommend you do a canopy distance of about 24 to 36 inches and this will depend on the strength of your LED grow light. As your seedlings begin to germinate, you can now move your grow light closer. This will be around 2 or 3 weeks after they have started sprouting.
2. LED Light Placement For Vegetative Stage
During the vegetative phase, your LED light should be placed closer to the plant canopy. They will require light for photosynthesis and plant maturation. Increasing their light intensity at this stage will encourage strong and healthy stems and roots.
3. LED Light Placement For Flowering Stage
The final stage of the plant growth cycle is the flowering stage and this is where fruit production commences. At this stage, your plant will require the LED light should be at their highest intensity for them to harden off.
However, as you increase the LED light intensity by bringing it close to your plant. You want to keep a close eye on them. Your plants’ response will always indicate their satisfaction or displeasure with light intensity. So, do the right adjustments immediately you notice any changes in your plants.
LED Light Distance From Plants’ Canopy For Clones
For LED light distance for your clones, you will need to place them closer to your plants’ canopy. This is because clones require intense light for their development.
You can position your LED grow light around 14 to 36 inches from your plants’ canopy. This distance will depend on the strength of your light and their maturity.
How close should my LED light be to my plants?
It depends on your situation. There are many factors involved in growing plants. How much sunlight do you have? What kind of plants do you want to grow? What size do they need to be? Do you want to grow them in soil or hydroponics? Do you want them to grow tall or short? Some plants need lots of sun to get their nutrients, some need less.
I would say to start small. You don't want to get in over your head and end up in a situation where you have no idea what you're doing. You can always add more later, if you find you need it. LED lights are generally used for indoor growing, as they are cheaper than natural lighting and can be controlled to adjust the amount of light that they give off. There are different kinds of LED lights, but the most common type is an LED strip light.
I would say your lights should be at least 18 inches above the tops of the plants. You can adjust this as you see fit. However, this does not mean that you need to put the light exactly 18 inches up from the top of the plants, or even from the bottom of the pots. The more distance you have between the plant and the light, the better. It will also be a lot easier to move the lights around when they are further away from the plants. I would say your lights should be at least 18 inches above the tops of the plants. You can adjust this as you see fit. However, this does not mean that you need to put the light exactly 18 inches up from the top of the plants, or even from the bottom of the pots. The more distance you have between the plant and the light, the better. It will also be a lot easier to move the lights around when they are further away from the plants.
How high should my lights be above my plants?
Lights are an important part of the growing process. If you don't have enough light, your plants will grow slowly and not develop their full potential. The light must be as close to the plant as possible.
This means that if you are using a fluorescent or HID fixture, you want to raise the fixture at least 12 inches above the soil level. If you are using a T5 or T8 fluorescent, you want to raise the fixture at least 18 inches above the soil level. If you are using a metal halide or high-pressure sodium, you want to raise it at least 6 inches above the soil level.
Do plants grow faster under 24 hours of light?
No. The reason why they don't grow faster is that plants have an internal clock, which regulates their growth and development according to the length of day. Plants are designed so that they can develop optimally with day lengths between 12 and 14 hours.A 24-hour day will prevent them from growing at their optimum speed. Plants have a circadian rhythm that regulates their growth and development according to the length of day.
The hanging distance for your LED light is crucial to your plants’ development. Ensure you get the correct LED light placement for your plants so they can flourish and won’t miss out on the best yield.