Can Grow Lights Burn My Plants?

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Light is a crucial factor to growing crops, but it can also introduce some issues. One of those potential issues is burning.

There are really two questions here:

  1. Can grow lights burn my plants?
  2. Can heat from grow lights burn my plants?

The answers are:

Light probably won’t burn your plants

Light, even intense light, probably wont burn your plants. If a plant is getting too much light, it can challenge your crops and be counterproductive, but it wont actually cause burning.

… but the heat from some lights might.


Some lights, like incandescent, fluorescent, and HID lights have bulbs that get quite hot. Usually, its the heat that burns your crop, causing tissue death and crop losses. These lights can basically cook your crops, especially if they are close to the plant like in a compact or high density system.

Read more: How far should my lights be from my plants?

Of these three light types, fluorescents produce the least heat.

This is one area where LED lighting shines (again). While LED lights do produce some heat, they deal with that heat more effectively than other light types. Plants can grow much closer to LEDs than other lighting types because of this. Usually crops can grow right up to the light without burning. This makes them very convenient in compact systems!

Learn more about lighting your crops

Knowledge is key when starting a farm, and we believe that new growers should have that knowledge at their fingertips when they need it.

Upstart University is the only online learning program with redeemable $9.99/month tuition. Check out courses like Lighting for Indoor Farmers and Intro to Business Planning today!

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