guide for cannabis grow lights

Guide For Cannabis Grow Lights​

Growing can be a tricky process, and one of the most crucial factors to consider is cannabis grow lights. The right grow box lights can make all the difference in achieving optimal plant growth and high yields. There are various types of grow lights available on the market, each with their benefits and drawbacks. Knowing which grow light to use for your cannabis plants can be overwhelming, especially for beginners.

Key Takeaways:

  • Cannabis grow lights are essential for optimal plant growth and high yields.
  • There are various types of grow lights available, including CFL, HPS, LED, and MH lights.
  • Choosing the right grow light depends on the specific cannabis growth stage and individual needs.
  • CFL lights are suitable for small grow spaces and vegetative growth stages due to their limited wattage.
  • HPS lights have a high intensity and provide a spectrum suitable for all growth stages, but can generate a lot of heat.

CFL Lights for Cannabis Growing

Compact fluorescent grow lights, commonly known as CFL lights, are a popular option for growing cannabis. They have a number of benefits as well as drawbacks that growers must be aware of.

Pros of CFL Lights for Cannabis

  • Energy-efficient – CFL lights use less electricity than traditional incandescent bulbs
  • Affordable – CFL bulbs are relatively inexpensive to purchase
  • Fits in small spaces – CFL bulbs come in various sizes and shapes, making them valuable to growers who have limited space
  • Low heat output – CFL bulbs are cool to the touch, reducing the risk of heat damage to cannabis plants

Cons of CFL Lights for Cannabis

  • Less intense light – CFL lights are not as powerful as HID or LED lights, making them less effective for larger growing spaces
  • Lower yields – CFL lights may not produce as high of yields as other types of grow lights
  • Not ideal for flowering stage – CFL bulbs may not have the right spectrum of light for optimal flowering stage growth

The recommended wattage for CFL lights varies depending on the stage of cannabis growth. For seedlings and clones, 26 to 42 watts per square foot is recommended. For vegetative growth, increase to 40 to 65 watts per square foot. During the flowering stage, 80 to 100 watts per square foot is ideal.

Overall, CFL lights are a good option for small grow spaces or for growers on a budget. However, for larger grow spaces or for growers looking to achieve maximum yields, other types of grow lights such as HPS or LED lights may be a more suitable choice.

clf grow light for cannabis

HPS Lights for Cannabis Cultivation

High-Pressure Sodium (HPS) grow lights have been a longtime favorite among cannabis growers, thanks to their high-intensity output and favorable spectrum of light for flowering. HPS lights emit a warm, yellowish light that is ideal for the flowering stage of cannabis growth. They are also relatively affordable and offer a high yield per watt, making them a popular choice for commercial growers.

Advantages of HPS Lights

  • HPS lights have a high level of light intensity, making them great for use during the flowering stage of cannabis growth. They produce strong growth and dense buds.
  • The yellowish spectrum of light produced by HPS lights is energy-efficient and can help save money on your electric bill.
  • HPS lights are widely available in a range of wattages, making it easy to customize your grow setup based on your needs.
  • HPS lights are relatively affordable compared to LED grow lights.

Disadvantages of HPS Lights

  • One of the biggest drawbacks of HPS lights is their heat generation. They produce a considerable amount of heat, which can create hotspots in your grow space, potentially leading to plant damage if not managed properly.
  • The yellowish spectrum of light produced by HPS lights is not ideal for vegetative growth stages of cannabis plants. Supplemental lighting may be necessary during the vegetative stage.

When using HPS lights, it is crucial to manage the heat generated by the grow lights, ensure proper ventilation, and use a cooling system to prevent damage to your cannabis plants. Overall, HPS grow lights are a solid choice for commercial and hobbyist growers alike, especially during the flowering stage.

hps lights for growing cannabis

LED Lights for Optimal Cannabis Growth

LED lights have quickly become a popular choice for cannabis growers due to their energy efficiency and customizable spectrum options. These lights allow growers to adjust the light spectrum to suit specific growth stages and strain needs.

One of the main advantages of LED lights is their low heat emission, which helps to maintain consistent temperatures and reduces the need for additional cooling systems. Additionally, LED lights have a longer lifespan and require less maintenance than other types of grow lights.

However, it’s important to note that LED lights can be a larger upfront investment compared to other lighting options. Additionally, some growers have found that the intensity of LED lights can be lower than other types of grow lights, requiring them to be placed closer to the plants.

Overall, LED lights are a great option for those looking for energy-efficient, customizable, and low-maintenance grow lights. When used correctly, they can result in excellent cannabis growth and yields.

cannabis plants growing under led light

MH Lights for Healthy Cannabis Plants

When it comes to maintaining healthy cannabis plants, MH lights play a crucial role in providing a balanced spectrum of light during the vegetative growth stage. MH lights emit a blue-white light that is perfect for promoting vegetative growth, as it encourages the development of strong stems and foliage.

One of the significant advantages of using MH lights is that they are more energy-efficient than traditional HPS lights. They also produce less heat, reducing the need for additional cooling equipment in your growing space.

It’s important to note that MH lights may not be suitable for the entire duration of the cannabis growth cycle, as they lack the red wavelengths needed for flowering. As a result, growers may need to supplement their MH lights with additional sources of light during the flowering stage.

Overall, MH lights are an excellent choice for maintaining healthy cannabis plants during the vegetative stage, but additional lighting may be needed for optimal growth and yields during the flowering phase.

mh (metal halide) grow light


Choosing the right cannabis grow lights is crucial to achieve optimal yields. Whether you decide to go with CFL lights, HPS lights, LED lights, or MH lights, each type has its own advantages and disadvantages, as discussed in the preceding sections.

It’s vital to consider the specific cannabis growth stages and individual plant requirements when selecting the appropriate lights. CFL lights are ideal for small-scale operations and seedlings, while HPS lights are suited to large-scale commercial growers. LED lights offer energy efficiency and customization options, and MH lights provide a balanced spectrum of light for healthy vegetative growth.

With the right lighting setup, you can achieve hearty cannabis growth and impressive yields. So, take the time to evaluate your needs and select the appropriate grow lights for your cannabis cultivation. Remember, in the world of cannabis growing, lighting is not just a luxury; it’s a necessity that can make or break your harvest. If you want to learn more about growing read our “Complete Guide To Growing Cannabis.”

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