Saturday, October 7, 2017

Can we grow plants under synthetic light ?

The challenges facing agriculture are one of the greatest challenges faced by humans today,

many factors that have led to the reduction of agricultural areas such as desertification, urbanization, water scarcity and climate change made the green lands shrink .

All of these factors have led to new creation of alternatives to traditional agriculture, and many projects and initiatives have already begun to grow on rooftops, terraces and even vertical agriculture in skyscrapers .

The biggest challenge for these types of agriculture is to provide sufficient sunny areas to feed and grow plants, prompting researchers to look for alternatives to sunlight to help the plant to process photosynthesis and produce food.

Here is a set of answers to the most important questions about agriculture under artificial light

Can plants grow and grow on light bulbs?

Fortunately yes! But the plant has a requirement like certain wavelengths, luckily most of them fall within the scope of the normal visible spectrum of light and can be covered with ordinary lamps, but the best is to use are  LED lamps made for the growth of plants where produce the most used waves by plants, so you may want to consider buying These bulbs instead of buying general use lamps.

Halogen lamps can also provide full-spectrum light, but being incandescent bulbs produces a lot of heat so they must be placed at sufficient distance from the plants so as not to burn the leaves. Fluorescent lamps are also suitable as well as the most energy-efficient LED bulbs.

Do plants grow better under sunlight or artificial light?

Plants generally grow better under sunlight. This is because sunlight contains more energy and a more balanced distribution of artificial light. In particular, the sun emits the largest possible slice of light that contains more coverage in red and blue areas, while artificial light typically lacks these areas.

What is the best color for light to grow plants?

  • Plants absorb light in very specific waves to obtain energy. In particular, the chlorophyll absorbs blue and red light while reflecting the green light. In fact this is why plants look green to us.
  • The highest absorption of light occurs within the range of red and blue light

In general, the plant needs:

  1. Blue wavelength light for leaf growth.
  2. Red light wavelength of flowers and fruits

For ideal wavelengths are: -
Red (610-700 nm) and blue (450-500 nm) These wavelengths are most effective in enhancing photosynthesis
Green (500-570 nm) light is the least effective - it is not absorbed by plants but is reflected as we mentioned before

Do plants absorb ultraviolet radiation?

Yes, plants absorb ultraviolet radiation, but in small quantities . Luckily, plants do not need too much ultraviolet radiation, and much UV radiation can damage the plant .

How intense is the light that plants need to grow?

Minimum illumination required about 2000 lumens per square foot. Mid range is about 5000 lumens per square foot. The optimum intensity is 7000-7500, or higher, per square foot candle. Assuming we maintain a distance of 3-5 inches from the surface of the plant.

Note: The intensity of the light is usually written on lamps from the outside in the name of luminous (luminous) while the watt reflects the electric power and consumption

Hpow much time we should keep the artificial lighting over the plant?

Ideal duration of 12 to 16 hours per day of course may increase or decrease slightly with no negative impact on the plant