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Growing cannabis is an artful science. The math of growing fruitful and healthy cannabis buds is just as important as the tender, love and care growers put into their efforts and harvest. An important corne rstone of maintaining a vigorous and bountiful plant and yield is lighting.

Growers from novice to veteran understand the importance of lighting for their cannabis plants. This article will assist you in understanding the fundamentals of the lighting spectrum. 

What is the Lighting Spectrum?

Since the 80’s, government agencies such as NASA have been trialing the effects that LEDs have on plants. We have learned that different ranges of light have many different effects on plants, especially cannabis.



To the naked eye, light only appears white. However, the reality is that light comes in a range of recognizable colors. If you have ever witnessed a rainbow after a storm, then you have an understanding of the spectrum.

The complete spectrum of light (pictured below) is an electromagnetic spectrum that ranges from infrared lights to ultraviolet (UV) light. The light spectrum is also measured in nanometers (nm).

Visible light can range anywhere from 380 nanometers to approximately 750 nanometers. Every organic being on this planet is dependent on light to thrive and survive.

Although sunlight allows a complete spectrum in the form of wavelengths to organic life, it can be quite inefficient for indoor growers. Below, we have provided a fundamental guide to understanding which level of lighting is most effective:

Lighting and the Vegetative Stage

Most studies have shown that lights in the Ultraviolet range are extremely beneficial for the overall body of the plant. Ultraviolet lights, or simply ‘blue light’ is essential in promoting and maintaining healthy and hearty leaves during the vegetative stage.

This is achieved indoors by using lights such as compact fluorescent lamps, or CFLs or metal halide light bulbs. The lights aforementioned are capable of producing 400 to 500 nanometers of lights, or the latter end of the UV light spectrum.



These lights mimic the Sun’s ability to give off the appropriate amount of blue light during the Summer and Spring seasons. 460 nanometers are often regarded as the model number of nanometers of light for cannabis during the vegetative stage.

Green light (495-570 nanometers) has been proven to be the benefactor in yielding lettuce, however, this is not the case when cultivating cannabis.

Lighting and the Flowering Period


When your cannabis plants have become ready to enter the flowering period, the most effective light is infrared or red light. Infrared lighting falls in the range from 620 nanometers to about 780 nanometers.


The goal of the flowering period is to yield the most buds your cannabis plants can physiologically produce.


Scientists have shown that infrared lighting brings the rate of photosynthesis to its apex versus any other light on the spectrum. Some cases note that 660 is an exceptional number of nanometers to produce those big buds.


Infrared lighting imitates the red wavelengths showcased by our Sun during the dog days of Summer and Fall. There is also little evidence that yellow light (570-590 nanometers) is useful for cannabis in its flowering period.


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Cultivation

As the old Scottish proverb states, “Necessity is the Mother of Invention.” This is none all too true than in the case of the cannabis industry. As the demands for better products grow larger, more and more technology & innovation is starting to emerge. Therefore, small to mid-sized growers now have many options at their disposal when it comes to choosing their path to a great harvest.


WeGrow is here to help you stay informed on the similarities and differences, features, advantages & drawbacks of both indoor and outdoor cultivation.

Outdoor Growing


The History:

Outdoor cannabis is one of the most ancient plants that have been studied and identified as having psychoactive compounds. It evolved from the steppes of Central Asia. The cannabis plant’s 12,000+ year history is full of references to spirituality, nobility, and stature.

It has been used as an anesthetic in ancient medicine dating as far back as 4000 BC. The dump sites of the hunters and gatherers were rich in nutrients. Thus, unsurprisingly they served as great breeding grounds for the marijuana plant. From there, the “holy herb” traveled through the early world. Cannabis finally landed in the United States by way of Mexico in the early 20th century.  

The Logistics:

First, it is important to understand that cultivating cannabis outdoors is a highly unstable venture. Growers who grow outdoors are subject to many factors. These factors can alter the trajectory of their plants in many negative ways. From the unintended cross pollination of the plants due to pollen in the air from male plants, to adverse and unpredictable weather conditions, outdoor grows are certainly stressful.

However, there are of course several key advantages to cultivating marijuana outdoors. The natural sunlight, ample space, & healthy soil all work together to stretch your outdoor plants to their highest potential. What your plants will lack in stability, if all goes well, they’ll make up in quantity of harvest.

Indoor Growing


The History:

Of course, indoor grows are a much more recent development. Forced underground due to the unfair characterization of the drug as dangerous, growers who knew better started to develop techniques that would mimic the natural environment suitable for cannabis cultivation.

Necessity certainly bred innovation, and now the indoor cannabis boom is in full swing. From lighting tech such as VividGro products, to grow help & information, modern growers are in luck. Channels now exist for individuals in legal states to cultivate their own quality bud. This is certainly great news for growers that may not necessarily have the space to grow outdoors, or may not want the hassle of adverse conditions potentially ruining their crop.

The Logistics:

For growers in states where it is legal to cultivate, the indoor option is the more optimal choice simply because of the level of ultimate control they are able to exert. By following proper water management, using the appropriate tools, and knowing the ins and outs of the process (flower cycle, veg cycle) growers will surely come away with a great harvest and less stress.

While you may not get the biggest harvests from your indoor garden, dialing in the factors above will create potent, pungent, sticky buds that are less prone to developing seeds or deficiencies.

In a head-to-head showdown, we’d have to give it to Indoor grows over outdoors grows, mostly due to the stability of the growing environment.

Classic Strains (Outdoor)

Classic Strains (Indoor)

Keep following WeGrow for more exclusive tips, tricks & hacks to get your grow into top form! Happy Growing!


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