How To Choose and Use Grow Light For Succulents

More and more people love the succulents due to their beautiful color and a variety of shape. But it is not easy to grow succulents.If you don’t keep the correct growth method, it will cause them lose gorgeous color or cute shape. Choosing a suitable succulent grow light and use the proper method can help you get the best results.

In this post,we will explore everything about grow light for succulents and some succulents growth knowledge.Let’s us go detail.

Light requirement for Succulents

Most succulents are native to deserts and plateaus. There have relatively small shape,and more focus on firmness rather than growth. Therefore, we must build a similar succulent growth environment that strong ultraviolet light is essential. Although ultraviolet light has an inhibitory impact on plant growth, it strengthens the thickness of plant cell walls, reduces stem and leaf elongation and plant evaporation. For plateau plants, a powerful ultraviolet light strengthen the synthesis of anthocyanins, and the relatively less air environment also inhibits the synthesis of chlorophyll. Therefore, many plateau plants are brighter colors.

However, there is still a slight difference between the deserts and plateaus environment. The penetration of medium-wavelength ultraviolet light is weak, long-wavelength ultraviolet light is powerful.So, there is a much difference between high-altitude areas and low-altitude areas for medium-wavelength ultraviolet light,and there is little difference between plateaus and flat areas for long-wavelength ultraviolet light. Therefore,powerful ultraviolet light is important for plateau plants, but for desert plants, due to drought and less rain, long lighting time is more important,but if you want to grow plant shape more better, ultraviolet light is necessary.

UVA light(wavelength 320~420nm) has powerful penetration, which can penetrate most transparent glass and plastic. UVA is good for promoting succulents colored and shape built.

UVB light(wavelength 275~320nm) has medium penetration,relatively short wavelength part of among will be absorbed by transparent glass. UVB can be short of stem and leaf elongation to improve resistance. 

UVC light(wavelength 200~275nm),has weak penetration, almost completely absorbed by the ozone layer. It is harmful to people, the same as succulents,only used for killing and sterilizing and removing mildew in a short time.

Visible light(390nm-780nm),the sunlight is a mixture of seven visible lights, referred to as white light.  Red and blue light are the most important for succulents growing. Red light is beneficial for promoting flowering and fruit, and blue light is beneficial for promoting rhizome growth.

The type of grow light for succulents

There are many types of grow light for succulents,such as:

Narrow-wavelength UVB light are commonly used for medical application. The price is relatively high, it should be placed at a vertical height of 50cm from the plant for half an hour a day to prevent stem and leaf elongation, the longer the distance, the longer the time.

Broad-spectrum UV light is special for reptiles and plants.UVB1.0~10.0 are available, although it is called UVB, etc., it also contains UVA , It is recommend 10~15W low power light is far away 50cm from the plant for half an hour a day to color, health care, and prevent stem and leaf elongation, but it should be adjusted according to the growth situation. However, UVA and UVB are harmful to the skin and eyes. When the light is turned on, it must be covered by glass. If there is no cover, it is better to keep a distance of more than 1 meter.

Red and blue lights. Red and blue LED light is quite cheap, energy-saving and high efficiency,which is beneficial to promote flowering and bearing fruit and growing roots. The red and blue lights can be irradiated for more than 10 hours a day according to requirement, but they should be turned off after dark, because the plant also rest at night.

Full spectrum light as like sunlight, it will emit appropriate proportion of UVB, UVA and visible light. But this kind of light will produce a lot of heat than LEDs, which means more consumes electricity.

How to use different types of grow lights for succulents

If there is sunlight but the glass is covered, then you only need to choose UVB. Although UVB 10.0 can’t reach the intensity of the origin place, it can grow very well by combining water control and temperature.

If there is half-day sunshine, no glass, then you need to increase the intensity of the full spectrum, red and blue LEDs + UVB + UVA to make up for insufficient sunlight.

If there is no light at all, or long-term rain, you need high power and full spectrum light,a small amount of UVA, and increasing the red light ratio during the flower period, but too powerful will fade prematurely .

The grow lights wattage for succulents

If it is LEDs,the average wattage for succulent is about 200W per square meter and adding the consumption of UVB, almost total 240 watts per square meter. Not more than 400 watts, it will cause plants to shrink.

For desert plants, UVB needs to be more than 50W, and for alpine plants, more than 100W. It can increase appropriately during the period of vigorous growth, but don’t exceed 200W.

What is the difference between succulent grow light and ordinary light?

There are two main differences between succulent grow light and ordinary light.

One is succulent grow light can provide ultraviolet light and a certain proportion of red and blue light, while the intensity of ordinary lights is very low.Other is succulent grow light is  beneficial for prevent succulents stem and leaf elongation, while ordinary lights is poor in these.

Can LED lights replace the sunshine in succulent planting?

The illuminance of sunshine at noon on a sunny day is above 100000 lux, 20000-40000lux in the morning and evening, 5000-30000lux on a cloudy day and 2000-8000lux in indoor near the window but no direct sunlight area.

In general,Lighting requirement for the growth of green plants is between 20000-50000lux. LED grow light use a specific ratio of red and blue light to provide light.

Although the LED technology can achieve higher luminous efficiency (≥100lm/w), for growth light is low that about 40~50lm/w.Therefore, high-power LEDs are needed to be useful for succulent planting. If only red and blue LEDs are used, the lack of powerful ultraviolet light,it cannot prevent the succulent stems and leaves elongation and colored.

How long does use succulent grow light?

Different type of succulents have different growth requirement. In general,If there are only two or three hours of sunlight, you can illuminate it for 4 hours with a grow light. The use of time is determined according to the actual situation of the plant. If there is better lighting conditions during the day, then there is no need to use the grow light at night.

How to choose and use of succulent grow light


From above visible light spectrum (sunlight). We know that  red and blue light can promote plant growth.

In general,It is better to choose the ratio of red and blue is 7:1, 7:2, 7:3.There are some differences for each type of succulent, but the approximate ratios are all the same.

In addition to red and blue light, we also need a certain intensity of UVB light, and ensure the appropriate light intensity to get the best results.

Wrapping up

There are a variety of grow lights for succulent, including:UVB, metal halide light, LED lights, full-spectrum plant lights, etc. Blue and red LEDs can promote the growth of succulents, but they cannot prevent the stems and leaves elongation. We need to add a certain amount of UVB light.

Succulent grow lights are not used as long as possible. It is better to use the grow light for 4-6 hours a day and the lighting time according to the growth state of the plant.It should turn off in the evening or when there is enough sunlight on a sunny day.

When we purchase the grow light ,it is also important to consider the power of the light, and keep an appropriate lighting distance from 30-50 cm, otherwise it will burn the blades.