During the cloning and seedling stage, a plant's entire life is shaped. Grow lights are one of the most important aspects of your grow room, and thus growers should ensure clones and seedlings are being given ideal lighting during this early phase. Serious growers generally utilize a separate lighting system for cloning, vegetating, and flowering, to ensure optimal lighting conditions for each phase.
Do you need lights to root clones and seedlings?
Some growers try and germinate seeds and root cuttings without grow lights, but this is not very effective. Fresh cuttings and seedlings need light for energy, but the type of light is very important. That is where seedling grow lights come into play.
What are the best seedling grow lights for seeds and clones?
Most growers utilize fluorescent grow lights in the initial stage of a plant’s life, because they are bright, efficient, and can easily be mounted to distribute light evenly. A couple of 2-ft T5 tubes can cover a single propagation tray without burning or drying out the plants.
LED grow lights also work, but it is important to ensure they are not too close to the young plants or seedlings, as new plants are very sensitive. If you want to try and grow your plants from seed to harvest with the same grow light, a full spectrum LED will get the job done.
How many hours of lights do clones and seeds need?
Some growers insist on implementing a 24-hour light cycle, as this ensures a consistent temperature in the cloning machine. Other gardeners will opt for a short dark period, giving plants 18 hours of light. Regardless, it is imperative that clones and seedlings are given high quality light.
How do you set up grow lights for seedlings?
The first step is hanging your grow lights. If you are unsure how to do this, check out our full guide to hanging grow lights.
Then, place your cloning system under the grow lights at a safe distance. Start farther away, and as you watch how the seedling grow light affects your plants, you can move it closer. Watch for signs of heat stress on your clones, such as a yellowing of the leaves.
The better lighting conditions you provide for clones or seedlings, the sooner they can be transplanted and moved into the vegetative stage.
Grow light systems can be complex, and so if you have any questions reach out to our experienced growers at 888-815-9763 and let us help you through the process! If you want to learn more about propagation visit our learning center where we have an abundance of articles on the subject, including our definitive guide on how to clone a plant.
If you are starting from seed, we have you covered! Check out our definitive guide on germinating seeds.