Grower’s Choice - Horticulture Light Bulbs in Ontario, California

Types of Grow Lights

There are several types of lights, but below are the four most common ones you'll find in a grow space. There are numerous variations within each of these four types as well, and new lights and technology come out constantly.

Lights have fixtures and bulbs, and some need a ballast. Depending on the type and model, the bulbs or the components can be more costly. There are many abbreviations but do not be alarmed.

HID lights

HID (high-intensity discharge) is an umbrella term under which MH and HPS bulbs fall, which we'll discuss more below. These types of lamps have a hood that reflects light and bulbs that are enclosed capsules containing gas, as opposed to bulbs you'd see in your home, which has a filament that heats up.

For HIDs, light occurs as an arc between two nodes inside the bulb. The gas contained in these bulbs is what makes MHs and HPSs different. HID bulbs are typically more expensive than the reflective hoods that hold them.

HIDs have been the standard in indoor weed cultivating for decades, however, LEDs are quickly catching up to them.

Both types of HIDs are usually inexpensive to purchase but will eat up electricity. HIDs throw off a lot of light and heat, which the plants need to bulk up and get potent. But, they run hot, contain heavy metals, and ballasts can stop working.

However, because of their low cost, if you're new to indoor cultivating and not sure how frequently you'll do it, you might want to purchase an affordable HID light at first to test the water.

MH (Metal halide)

These bulbs contain mercury and metal halides, produce a bluish light and are typically utilized for vegetative growth. They require a ballast to regulate the current. In the past, ballasts have been big and bulky, however digital ones are currently available.

HPS (High-pressure sodium)

These HID bulbs usually contain sodium, mercury, and xenon, and produce yellow/orange light, and are commonly utilized for flowering plants. Some growers will start plants under MH bulbs and change them to HPSs when plants go into the flowering stage, using the same hood. These lights also need a ballast.

CFL lights

CFLs (compact fluorescent lamps) are fluorescent lights similar to what you would find in a school or office building, but smaller. For growing weed, they are normally called "T5s"-- the "T" represents "tubular" and the "5" refers to its diameter, "⅝".

There are daylight bulbs and warm white bulbs; the former is better for vegetative growth, and the latter for flowering.

These fluorescent lights are inexpensive and effective and great for vegetative growth. They're particularly good for helping along with germinating seeds and small seedlings because they don't emit much heat and will not burn the delicate seeds. They won't run up your electricity bill too much.

The downside to CFLs is they aren't great for flowering plants, and growers will commonly utilize a different kind of light to finish plants. CFLs just don't produce enough intense light for plants to pack on weight.

Components come in all shapes and sizes and can usually fit 4-12 long fluorescent bulbs; the standard size is 8 bulbs. Fixtures normally have a reflective material to bounce light in one direction, down on your plants.

LED lights

LEDs (light-emitting diodes) are relatively new to the cannabis cultivating world, compared to HPSs, MHs, and CFLs, however, they are quickly proving to be the way of the future. LEDs might be more pricey to purchase at first, but they are far more efficient and kinder to the environment and your electricity bill. Some cities even offer tax breaks to commercial growers that install or change to LEDs because they're much better for the environment.

LEDs also generally run a lot cooler than HIDs, so you may not require extra equipment to cool off your grow area, and one LED can typically be utilized for both vegetative and flowering growth. Some high-end LEDs enable you to change the spectrum for each growth stage.

New LED growth lights appear all the time, but knockoffs abound. There are many inexpensive LEDs that don't generate the best spectrum of light for plants.

For all the grow lighting supplies with the best and latest technology in Ontario, California, contact Grower’s Choice at 909-972-8419 or visit our website at for more information.