Constant production and high yields are the goals to be achieved in commercial horticulture. The decisive course for this is already set during the cultivation of seedlings, clones and young plants. Because only from strong and healthy young plants can high-yielding harvests be generated later.
The optimal conditions for growing young plants vary depending on the plant species, but generally they prefer a warm, humid climate:
Seedlings and young plants require a high humidity of 80-90% relative humidity at a temperature of 22-24°C for optimal development. In order to prevent mold development at an early stage, constant air circulation in the propagation room should be ensured. Since high humidity can lead to corrosion and failures, especially with electrical components such as fixtures, cables and lights, you should pay attention to the IP protection class of the equipment.
Light is also a determining factor in the cultivation of young plants: In the early stages of the plants, a light spectrum with a higher blue content is preferred to promote compact growth and strong roots. Lamps and lights with a color temperature of 4000 to 6500 Kelvin are recommended here. Blue light also promotes the production of secondary ingredients such as essential oils or colorants and flavors.
When growing young plants, a relatively low intensity with a PPDF value of approx. 100 µmol/m²/s is usually sufficient. In multilayer rack systems, these values can easily be realized by simple fluorescent or LED tubes with a small distance to the plant.
Lamps and luminaires for growing plants:
The classic: Propagation with fluorescent tubes
Conventional fluorescent tubes are an effective method of lighting for propagation in horticulture. They are available in various lengths and different light colors and wattages. Due to their low height and heat radiation, they can be used in multilayer systems and vertical farming racks without any problems. Their light output is completely sufficient for the propagation of most crops.
Fluorescent lamps are very affordable, but for operation, fixtures for suspension and power supply are still needed. The average lifespan of fluorescent tubes is about 10,000 hours and their light output decreases over time.
LED solutions for propagation: State-of-the-art and highly efficient
In addition to full-spectrum LED lights, which are suitable for the complete growing cycle, there are also high-quality LED solutions especially for the propagation of crops. The Start Eco Batten LEDs from Sylvania have a color temperature of 4000 Kelvin, are extremely efficient at 125lm/W and have a service lifetime of at least 30,000 hours. With a length of 120cm or 150cm, they are ideally suited for use in rack systems and are water- and vapor-proof thanks to protection class IP65. By daisy-chaining several LEDs can be connected to each other, so that only one power connection is needed for a whole rack.
LED-Tubes: Modern technology in a proven format
LED-Tubes are the ideal solution for upgrading growing areas with conventional fluorescent tubes to LED technology. These are LED modules in the design of T8 tubes. Thanks to the identical socket, the old fluorescent lamps in the existing fittings can be replaced without rewiring and the LED-Tubes can be put into operation directly.
Premium LED-Tubes from renowned manufacturers are available in lengths of 60cm, 120cm and 150cm and offer the suitable counterpart to each design of fluorescent tubes. The light colors and temperatures of 4000K and 6500K are optimally suited for the cultivation of seedlings and young plants due to their high blue content.
Our tip for the setup of new propagation areas:
Invest directly in state-of-the-art LED lighting at the cutting edge of technology. Our propagation LEDs are easy to install, can be operated as stand-alone units without fittings and have an extremely long lifespan of up to 30,000 hours. Thanks to protection class IP65, safe operation in humid rooms and in connection with automatic irrigation systems is trouble-free.
Our tip for the modernization of propagation rooms with fluorescent tubes:
With LED-Tubes, an upgrade to LED technology in your grow rooms is possible without much effort. Simply replace your old fluorescent lamps in the existing armatures with the efficient LED-Tubes and profit immediately from optimal color spectra, energy savings and considerably longer maintenance intervals.
Professional product advice and light planning for your propagation project
With over 20 years of experience in professional horticulture, we are at your disposal with our know-how. No matter if you are planning to set up a new propagation area, if you need a replacement for old lamps or if you want to modernize your conventional propagation lighting with energy-saving LED technology: we are happy to advise you on the selection of the right products and, if you wish, we can create a professional lighting plan for your propagation area.
Our tip for home gardeners:
Artificial light sources are also useful in the field of home cultivation: varieties with a long cultivation period, such as tomatoes, chilies or peppers, can be grown indoors from February onwards. Here we recommend the Sylvania Gro-Lux E27 LED with vegetative spectrum and E27 thread, which with 39µmol PPF output at only 17 watts is an ideal growing light for home use.