Do not forget eye protection when using LED grow lights.
It goes without saying that protecting your eyes from UV rays is important. And this isn’t only from the sun, but also from devices that emit blue light. LED grow lights, for one, can be detrimental to our eyes which can ultimately lead to vision loss. That is why we have to be responsible indoor growers; wear the proper eye protection when tending to your plants.
Blue light has a short wavelength which them means it produces a higher amount of energy. It pard of the visible spectrum. It helps regulate our biological clocks as well as help with certain brain functions like memory and cognitive performance. And the biggest source of blue light is our sun. Hence, going out at the time of day when the sun is brightest is not recommended.
Other sources that emit blue light include smartphones, tablets, PC monitors, and as mentioned earlier, LED grow lights. According to eye doctors, the high-energy blue-violet is the most harmful. This wavelength can damage the retina and be a factor for age-related macular degeneration or AMD which can then lead to central vision loss.
People will get symptoms when getting exposed to blue light for prolonged periods. Here are the tell-tale signs:
As prevention, do not forget to wear a pair of UV LED safety glasses when tending to your indoor plants. High-quality pairs can effectively block the harmful blue light. As for those who spend hours on their phones and PCs, make it a habit of wearing glasses that have special UV protection lenses.
Get a free pair of UV LED safety glasses when you purchase items $200 and above at ChampionLED.com!
A pleasant scent can definitely make one feel better. That is why most spas invest in expensive scent diffusers and humidifiers. As for your home, aromatherapy can be easily achieved by growing herbs, especially the fragrant ones. If you want to keep your living space smelling naturally nice, here are five aromatic herbs that can be easily grown indoors.
Mint is one of the easiest plants to grow indoors, and it’s perfect for tea lovers. You can choose to grow spearmint or peppermint as both grow as easy as weeds would. Do note that peppermint’s mint effect is a lot more than the spearmint’s so if you have a small space, it’s best to go with the former. Whereas if your grow room is large, you can cultivate as many spearmint plants as you can. Mint can thrive even without much light, but it’s best to make sure that they get some every day.
If you love to cook or are in love with Italian cooking, basil is a must-have herb in your indoor garden. Basil is so aromatic but is not as easy to grow as mint, especially in the cold months. However, there are varieties that you can choose that are good for indoor growing — Greek Miniature and Sweet Genovese. The latter, however, is a large variety, so it’s best that you have a huge pot and supplemental lighting like LED grow lights to help them grow into their full size. Aside from its culinary and aromatherapy uses, basil can also be used as a beautiful indoor plant.
As with basil, oregano is also used to give Italian cooking a distinct flavor and is also easy to grow indoors. A hot and dry environment is the best condition for it to thrive; oregano needs about six to eight hours of sunlight. So if you have grow lights, it shouldn’t be a problem. The easiest variety to grow is the Greek variety.
Unlike the first three, lemongrass does not need to actually be “grown.” You’ll only need stalks with green centers with their bulbs still intact. Place them in a glass of water, just a few inches of it. After a few weeks, new roots will start to grow. Of course, you can also plant them in pots, but make sure that the pots have enough drainage holes. This herb needs a lot of sunlight too, as lemongrass thrives in hot climates.
Lastly, is the ever pleasant-smelling lavender. It has culinary, medicinal, and crafting properties. It’s also one of the most beautiful indoor plants that you can grow at home. Lavender is a plant that loves heat, so make sure that you give it the right sunlight it needs. Again, if you have LED grow lights, it wouldn’t be a problem. Otherwise, make sure that it’s placed near a south-facing window where it can get bright light during the day.
You don’t have to be a professional grower to grow your vegetables inside your home. Bringing your garden indoors is definitely a wise decision, especially if you love cooking for yourself and your family. And if you are looking for ideas on what to grow, we picked five veggies that are the usual ingredients in everyday cooking.
Mashed potatoes, fries, potato salad — three of the American favorites! They are definitely a staple in most homes. If you agree, stop buying from the market; start growing them indoors. This decision will definitely make you save money in the long term. Taters can be grown in pots or planter pouches, but they’ll need a lot of light. This won’t be a problem if you are using a LED grow light in your grow area. Do note though that they grow big, so make sure your tent can accommodate them.
If you are in love with Italian dishes, you will definitely need lots of tomatoes. They are also quite nutritious as they can prevent constipation and protect the heart. Thank goodness, hydroponic systems paired with LED grow lights make them much easier to grow indoors. If your grow tent isn’t that big, grow the small variety so they won’t take up much space in your area.
Scallions are sweet onions that are milder and sweeter than the mature ones. They add flavor to dishes and are a classic mouthwatering garnish. Scallions are great substitutes for chives as well. They are very easy to grow because they are one of the plants that need less maintenance, making them perfect for beginner indoor growers. Scallions do not need as much light as the other vegetables as well so you can grow them outside your grow tent.
Keep your family eating healthy by growing spinach. This leafy green is a good source of several vitamins and minerals like vitamins B6, B9, C, E and K, calcium, iron, folic acid, magnesium, and potassium. No wonder Popeye gets very strong after eating spinach! Leafy greens usually do well indoors all-year-round. However, note that spinach and moisture do not go well together. That said, grow them in well-draining soil with apt holes for drainage. Always check the humidity of your grow tent as well.
Last, but not least, are herbs. Herbs add more flavor to any dish and also have medicinal properties. Basil and oregano are great for pasta, rosemary for chicken, and parsley is an attractive garnish. These herbs also grow well indoors, but make sure that get enough heat. Too cold temperatures can cause them to wilt. Other herbs that are perfect for growing indoors are chives, lemongrass, mint, and thyme.
Get to know the types of pests that can possibly infect your indoor garden.
Aside from light burn, pests are another pet peeve of indoor growers. That is why they do everything possible to keep these insects out of their grow tents. Prevention is key, of course, but there might be instances when it gets out of hand, and an infestation starts. Pests usually get into your grow tent by transfer — this could be via the tools you are using or even your clothes. That is why you should wear a set of clothes specifically for gardening time, wear gloves which you should dispose of after, and disinfect any tools you are going to bring inside your grow room. However, when you think an infestation indeed has started, eliminate immediately, as it’s much easier too in the early stages. Check the leaves for patchy discoloration and damage, as well as the insects, their larvae, eggs, and even feces.
Here are the five common types of pests the usually invade a grow tent:
These small sap-sucking pests travel by transfer. They have soft bodies and can be black, brown, green, pink, or white. Although the common ones are the green and black aphids. They invade by biting the leaves and sucking the sap out. The result is holes that turn brown and leave a silvery track. They start sucking from the roots so always check them as well. Aphids can easily spread plant disease from plant to plant and kill your crops easily. Add a top dressing on your grow medium like stones or pebbles as prevention.
These pests are small, dark flies that have short lives; they only live an average of 28 days, but lay hundreds of eggs. Their relatively large wings make them good flyers and just like the aphids, they first attack the roots. These gnats can easily pass on plant diseases which can kill your plant in just several days. In the case of infestation, add a top dressing of decorative pebbles or sand, which will prevent the eggs to get to the medium. You can also place sticky pads near the plants; hang them from your LED grow lights or put them directly above the soil to catch the flying ones.
Spider mites are less than a millimeter in size, lay white/transparent eggs on the underside of the leaves, and travel by transfer. Most of the species spin silk webs which protect their colony from the predators, earning them the “spider” in their name. These pests are responsible for tiny brown spots on the leaves of the plant. Spider mites thrive in a dry climate, so one effective way to slow down their infestation is by having high humidity in your grow area.
These pests are small, have slender bodies, and can be brown or yellow. Some of these thrips can fly, while those that can’t are jumpers, and travel by transfer. They puncture the sap of leaves from the topside, they release a digestive enzyme to break down leaf cells so they can suck the sap. One indication of an infestation is a silvery and sometimes bronze trail making the leaves look scabbed. Dark specks on the leaves and fruits are the pest’s feces. One way to stop the infestation is to use sticky pads and place them surrounding your plants.
Lastly, we have the white flies. These airborne insects look like small moths and well, are white. They are just a millimeter in size and are relatives of the aphids. The feed on the undersides of the leaves by biting the leaf and sucking the sap. These then make the leaves look lifeless and spotty. Because they travel by flight, sticky pads are the answer. Gently shaking the plant to cause them to fly off your plant can be a good way to catch them with the pads. As for the young white flies that couldn’t fly yet, spray the underside of your plants’ leaves with neem oil.
For more indoor growing articles, follow this blog. If you need to buy some indoor growing equipment like LED grow lights and grow tents, head on to ChampionLED.com!
Watch out for these symptoms to prevent your indoor plants from suffering, or worse, dying.
We all know that plants need light to photosynthesize. And indoor gardens make do with grow lights to replace natural lighting. In this age, newer generations of these lights are able to provide artificial lighting needed for every stage of the plant’s growth. However, there may be times when some parts of your plants may still not be getting the sufficient exposure they need. Prevent this from happening, here’s a list of signs your plants are not getting the right light so you can make the necessary actions.
Leaves are falling – The leaves start to fall even when they look healthy.
The new growth looks different – The new growth looks different from how the previous growth looked like. The leaves may be smaller and have a faded green hue. New stems may also be elongated.
Plants are visibly growing towards the light – Plants are growing towards the light more noticeably than they normally would.
Leaves may also cup upward – You will notice the leaves growing upward.
Do note that getting overexposed to light bears almost the same signs as well:
The color of leaves is faded – The leaves look washed out
The leaves are drying up – And when these leaves dry, they will start to fall off.
The plants might wilt come mid-day – The plants will dry up at the time it’s receiving the most amount of light.
The leaves turn brown – The leaves may also have scorched patches.
If your plants are experiencing these signs, it’s time to take action. Are you using LED grow lights? If not, this might be the reason. LED grow lights have the full spectrum of colors needed for every growth stage of your plants. These lights have the blue light which is in charge of regulating plant growth, as well as the red light that stimulates both flowering and vegetative growth. You must also be sure to get the right size. A rather large grow tent would need not only one LED grow light, so consider getting two.
For more indoor growing tips, follow this blog. And if you need to buy some stuff for your indoor garden, head on to ChampionLED.com!
The holidays are one of the best times of the year — you get to spend it with family, and you get to eat delicious dishes. However, it’s also that time when expenses double, and sometimes triple. Not to mention the increase in power bills because of the Christmas lights and other holiday decors that need power. And whether you are an indoor grower, this can pose a problem to your bank accounts. That’s why for this week, we listed down three ways on how you can use less power this holiday season.
Determine the ideal size of your garden to match your resources.
This is something expert growers know well; you should be able to estimate the number of plants you’ll need. For example, if you live alone and love pesto, you are probably growing basil leaves. Say you need a bunch of leaves for your cooking every week. That means you will probably need about six to eight pots of seedlings, as these plants take about a half and a month to grow. Now that you’ve determined the ideal size of your grow, make sure your resources match. You cannot use two large grow lights or two oscillating fans in a rather small grow tent. Always make sure that everything matches to avoid using more energy than needed.
Consider making the switch to LED.
LED grow lights, as we have always mentioned, is the most efficient type of lighting in the market today. It’s definitely the best investment any indoor grower can make because of LED’s top-notch efficiency. Not only do these lights emit less heat, but they also have the perfect light spectrum that plants need for photosynthesis and better growth. Lastly, it’s no secret that they consume less power as well, versus the traditional lighting like HPS, fluorescent lamps, and other old lighting units.
Get your grow tent a controllable air system.
To save on energy, it’s wise that you get a controllable air system for your grow tent. Having one is perfect with the sudden changes in temperature, and you won’t have to worry about the air system running in full force when it gets even colder this Christmas season. You can install an electric transformer that can lower the voltage for your extracting tube vent to let your vent run on various velocities when conditions allow it to.
Here are heat control secrets from indoor growing experts.
Being able to get the perfect temperature and controlling the heat can prove tough to some growers, especially the beginners. A little heat can cause problems and stress to some plants, that’s why controlling it is very crucial. And without further ado, here are five tips for heat control all of us growers can benefit from.
Make sure your fans are working properly.
As we all know, fans are important components of a grow tent. Without them, we won’t be able to control the odor, humidity, and temperature. Although some growers prefer air conditioners for heat control, fans are more recommended to cut costs down. Set up your exhaust fan in the highest cooling setting and it should be strong enough for your grow area. Make sure your oscillating fans are working correctly, and they should mimic the natural breeze. Note that these fans do not bring the temperature down in the tent, they move the air around and reduce hot spots.
Give them supplements
Some supplements can help your plants be more heat resistant and help them recover faster from heat stress. One of which is the seaweed kelp extract and is one of the best to use against heat stress. Many nutrients in the market already contain this so you won’t have to worry about finding this extract. However, you may also find a few brands in the market that sell pure sea kelp extract, which is also ideal for soil growers who prefer not to use mineral-based nutrients. Silica supplement also helps plants become more heat and cold resistant, as well as resistant to some plant diseases as well. This supplement also helps your plants get all the nutrients, and aid the soil in better absorbing the micronutrients.
Plants, as we know, need CO2 as part of the photosynthesis, and without it, they won’t develop and die. With more CO2, photosynthesis is increased, which means it can make your plants grow faster and produce bigger yields. Aside from that, carbon dioxide also makes your plants more heat-resistant. Adding CO2 is recommended in grow tents that have HPS or LED grow lights installed; otherwise, it won’t make any difference. You can either go with a CO2 generator or compressed CO2 in a bottle or tank.
Keep the roots cool.
Keeping the roots cool makes your plants more heat-resistant. This is true whether you are a soil grower or a hydroponic grower. Keep the roots cool at around 21 degrees Celsius to make them recover faster from heat stress. Obviously, keeping them cool requires watering regularly, especially during hot weather. You can also add mulch on top of the soil to maintain the moisture.
Switch to LED lights.
And as we always mention, making the switch to LED grow lights is a huge investment. Because LEDs emit far less heat than other types of lighting, controlling temperature is much easier. And although they give off really bright lights at the right spectrums, they use less power. LED grow lights are also the best choice if your grow tent does not allow you to have an exhaust fan.
Need more indoor growing tips? Follow Blog.ChampionLED.com!
Make your grow tent smell-proof with these simple tips.
Having to grow indoors is a blessing to people who constantly need the plants they are growing. If you are one serious home cook with a love of pasta, basil is an essential herb, and you probably produce a lot of it, along with other fragrant spices in your indoor garden. However, basil is quite aromatic, and some people at home may not like it. Disinfectant sprays, wall plug-ins, and scented candles may mask the smell, but they can only do so temporarily. That said, we listed down a few simple tips from indoor grow experts that you might want to try.
Check the air circulation, temperature, and humidity levels of your grow room.
Expert growers suggest checking if the air is circulating through your grow tent. Without proper circulation, you won’t be able to maintain the humidity and temperature control. Remember that grow lights come in different types and emit heat differently. If you are using LED grow lights, heat won’t be a big problem as they
virtually emit none at all. As for the other types like HPS and fluorescents, you have to regularly check as temperatures can get really high, which will then cause the air not to circulate properly. With that said, check if the fans equipped in your grow room are doing their job. They should be able to move the air through the garden properly to keep odors and the temperature low.
Make sure your grow tent has carbon filters.
Activated carbon filters, in particular, are very effective in keeping odors away. They are also called “scrubbers” because they scrub the smell and contaminants of the air literally. The activated carbon attracts mold spores, dust, and other pollutants that are carrying the odors and they all get trapped in the filter. They work in tandem with a duct fan to circulate the odorous air through the filter or exhaust clean air out of the carbon filter. These filters already come with some grow tents or grow cabinets, but other growers prefer to make DIY filters.
Get odor neutralizers.
For small indoor gardens, getting odor neutralizers like gels and wax blocks is one effective way to mask the odors. These products bind with the smells of your plants and neutralize them. You’ll only have to place the product in the space next to your grow tent and not inside it. This is because they can alter the natural flavor and smell of your plants. Odor neutralizing sprays are also available, but make sure not to spray them inside the tent as the spray’s smell will stick to the plants. Also, these products are not recommended because they can only mask the odor temporarily. They are best used only in emergency cases.
Get a grow cabinet.
Lastly, get a grow cabinet if your budget allows you. This type of grow room is designed to be air-tight and comes with all the complete components needed like filters and fans to make sure the odor stays inside the cabinet. This grow room is indeed an investment, as it costs more than your grow tent. However, if you really want a garden that can keep the smells confined inside, then a grow cabinet is the way to go.
Need to shop for LED grow lights or grow rooms? Head on to ChampionLED.com and check out all our products from various known and trusted brands.
Grow tents allow you to create the perfect indoor environment for your plants. However, there might be times when they are not so “perfect.” One of the problems that may arise is excessive heat. This is especially so if you are located in states with warmer climates. And if you can’t figure out why this is happening, you might have to make some changes in your grow area to help regulate the temperature. That said, here are a few ways on how to combat too much heat in your grow tents.
Turn on the AC.
An AC unit is pretty helpful in setting the right temperature, especially during the warmer months. Having an AC will also make the maintenance of the perfect temperature easier. It will also help cool the heat emitted by your grow lights, CO2 generators, pumps, ballasts, and other machines.
Make the switch to LED!
One of the factors that make your indoor environment heat up easily is your lights. Are your using an HPS or fluorescent lighting system? These lights emit a lot of heat and can become a big problem in the summer. That is why more and more indoor growers are making the switch. Getting LED grow lights indeed is a wise investment; aside from saving your plants from getting light burn and wasting your resources, you also get to save on power.
Lessen the number of your plants.
If you’ve already made the switch but it’s still warm in there, you might want to check on your plants. You are probably growing more than your grow tent can handle. Overcrowding your grow tent naturally will lead to excessive heat. That is why it’s important to do some research on how much plants your tent can accommodate. Of course, one good solution for this is to expand it or buy a bigger grow tent.
Add mulch and seaweed.
Lastly, adding mulch on top of the soil can help cool your grow tent. This is because it maintains the moisture, allowing the roots to be cooler. On the other hand, seaweed is a good and affordable fertilizer that helps the soil retain its moisture, keeping it cool. And as an added bonus, seaweed contains vitamins that aid in plant growth and better development of your plants.
Find out why the Kind LED K5 Series XL1000 is a top seller.
Kind LED XL1000 is one of the best lights in the market today. In fact, this unit has been voted the best LED grow lights of 2014 and 2015. If you’re currently looking for the perfect lighting for your expanding indoor garden and are curious as to why many growers prefer this unit, then read on.
Here are five of the many reasons why the Kind LED K5 Series XL1000 is a top seller:
Unlike the other grow lights in the market, the XL1000 has a sleek, classy design. It’s not bulky, definitely not an eyesore, and somewhat eye-catching. It’s a rule that function must always come first before aesthetics, but you wouldn’t have to worry, as the XL100 has both of these qualities.
Fully customizable spectrum
The adjustable spectrum allows growers to shift from vegetative lighting to flowering lighting. You can also control the spectrum for virtually any type of plant genus in greenhouse growing or in agriculture operations where crop rotation or crop zoning is done. The XL1000 also features sunrise and sunset modes where the lights mimic the sun to make the plants “wake up” and “sleep.” Lastly, the lights are dimmable on three different sets of LEDs, with increments of 1% to 100%. In other words, there are a million different colors and intensities that you can choose from.
The functions of the XL1000 are run conveniently from a handheld remote. You can control one unit and up to a hundred simultaneously from it as well. This is a big relief for large growers, as they would not need to climb a ladder, flip a switch or knob to change the spectrum while the lights are hanging above a wide area of crops.
Internal timing function
The XL1000 boasts an internal timing function in which growers can program all light cycles without the need for separate bulky analog or digital timers. You can turn on all the blues at once, the reds, or the whites, or you can turn them all at once. Also, these light cycles, including the featured sunrise and sunset modes can be changed using the handy-dandy remote mentioned above.
Ideal 3- and 5-watt diode combination
It has the perfect mix of both 3-watt and 5-watt diodes, creating the perfect amount of light for robust, lush, and large crops. The 5-watt diodes emit intense light that can penetrate through the canopy. However, they can run pretty hot. That is why the adding 3-watt diodes or adding the “sweet spot” efficiency of these diodes can give the perfect lighting without burning the leaves of your plants.
Is the XL1000 the perfect LED grow lights for your indoor garden? If so, shop now at ChampionLED.com!