There is a significant difference in the ways your bonsai trees can receive the much-needed amount of light when it comes to outdoor and indoor growing.

Above all, light is more than merely a source of energy for plants. Instead, it is also a provider of important information that is intricately related to the plants’ well-being.

With this in mind, bonsai tree LED grow lights are considered superior to other forms of lightning that can be used in indoor bonsai cultivation.

But why is that so and how to make the most from LED grow lights as part of your bonsai journey?

Read on and find everything you need to know on that matter below.

The Significance of Lighting Environment for your Bonsai

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As briefly mentioned above, light must not be looked upon as merely a source of energy for bonsai plants (and, in fact, for all other plants).

Light also gives important signals that help plants to undergo different stages in their development, starting from germination. It is light that helps plants to “understand” it’s time to switch from vegetation to budding, flowering and/or bearing fruit. Nevertheless, it is light that signals plants to induce protective substances if and when needed.

But how do bonsai trees receive these important signals anyway?

To the human eye, the visible range of light is far more limited than with plants. We are only capable of perceiving light within the 400 nm to 700 nm range.

However, your bonsai will be able to take advantage of a wavelength range known as PAR (Photosynthetically Active Radiation), as this is the range where most of the light your plants need belongs to.

To illustrate this better, plants feed on the Blue spectrum of light during vegetation while they need considerably higher amounts of light from the Red spectrum when it comes to feeding buds/fruits/flowers.

LED lights technology has gone a very long way within the recent decades. Thanks to the efforts of NASA researchers, LED lights have been further put in the spotlight of hobby gardeners of all levels of experience, and that’s for some good reasons.

Compared to other indoor lighting options such as fluorescent lights or HID lights, high-quality LED lights emit the most beneficial wavelength for your bonsai’s sake – the wavelength your miniature plants will utilize during both vegetation and flowering as needed.

LED grow lights are the green, eco-friendly solution as they have a low heat and energy output. This is further beneficial for bonsai growers who may have a hard time “taming” the high heat emitting HID lights or the poorly penetrating fluorescent lights that are otherwise less heat-inducing than HIDs.

Video by: BBC Earth Lab – Growing Plants w/ LED Technology | Bang Goes The Theory | Brit Lab | BBC

The Do’s and the Don’ts

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Even though LED lights come with a lower measure of power, namely watts, this does not mean that LED lights emit 7+ a less brighter light than, for instance, fluorescent lights. As a comparison, a 10W LED light can emit the same brightness as a 60W traditional bulb by simply saving from electricity, and not by depriving the plants of quality light.

The brightness of traditional bulbs is still measured in watts but this is not the case with LEDs, where it is lumens that indicate brightness.

For plants that require plenty of light to thrive, you need LEDs of higher lumens, and not necessarily of higher wattage.

One of the greatest advantages of LED lights is their durability – a high quality LED lighting system can last up to 25 years on an average! But as LED grow lights are still being introduced to the market, it is crucial to stay away from scammers.

No extra fans will be required for your bonsai’s well-being, as good quality LEDs come with built-in fans. Nevertheless, LED lighting systems to work without the use of an additional ballast – they are ready to be plugged in and switched on.

However, if you choose to opt for a more simplistic, DIY LED bulbs lighting system, you may need to consider an additional source of fresh flow of air such as an oscillating fan.

In the case, you opt for LED bulbs instead of a readily-available LED lighting system that emits the full PAR your bonsai require, then you need to further select separate LED bulbs based on their applicability for the particular type of bonsai tree.

For bonsai plants that need light for stimulating the growth of healthy foliage, LED bulbs of 6500K labeled as Cool Daylight work best – they release plenty of light from the Blue spectrum. For flowering bonsai trees, though, you need to look for LED bulbs labeled as 2700K – Warm White or Warm Daylight, as they will bathe your bonsai in plenty of light from the red spectrum.

Positioning LED grow lights for indoor bonsai cultivation takes some monitoring, too. Distance influences the way light colors can merge and penetrate to feed your bonsai plant but lights placed too near than needed will burn the leaves.

Video by: Draco Smith – My bonsai tree with led grow light.

The Takeaway

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According to the ancient Athenian philosopher Plato, it is easy to forgive a child who is afraid of the dark. However, Plato believed that “the real tragedy of life” is associated with men’s fear of the light.

If we manage to synthesize Plato’s immortal wisdom and apply it to the art of bonsai, we can focus on the significance of getting rid of your fears when it comes to bonsai tree LED grow lights. Despite being an innovative, modern-day technology, there is nothing complex about utilizing LED grow lights with best results for your indoor bonsai masterpieces.

Merging the centuries-old practice of bonsai cultivation with the advancements of the 21st century by using bonsai tree LED grow lights setups further conveys the always relevant beauty and intelligence behind bonsai: an endless journey through time that never gets out of date but instead, remains like an invisible bridge bringing us closer to the secrets of the Universe.