Do Regular Lights Help Plants Grow? | Important Things to Keep In Mind!

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by Morgan

Last update:

August 29, 2023

How To Choose The Right Lighting For Your Marijuana Grow Room

Plants, like people, require light to survive. They use light for energy, to create food, and for photosynthesis.

So, it stands to reason that if you want your plants to be healthy and thrive, you need to give them plenty of light.

But, do regular lights help plants grow?

Yes, plants may be grown using bulbs that you already have in your home. However, not all regular light bulbs work the same when helping plants grow.

Let's look at regular grow lights and the various bulbs that would be ideal for you.

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Can You Use a Regular Light Bulb to Help a Plant Grow?

The answer is yes! Plants need light to grow, and regular grow light is a great way to provide them with the light they need.

Field of marijuana plants

When we talk about regular light, we mean the kind of light you would find in a typical home or office setting.

However, there are a few things to keep in mind when using a regular light bulb to help plants grow, though. First, you want to ensure that the grow light is not too intense.

If the light is too intense, it can damage the plant. Second, you want to ensure that the light is not too low. If the light is too low, the plant will not be able to grow properly.

Regular incandescent light bulbs, for example, produce a lot of heat and a little color and light spectrum for plants to thrive. In fact, only about 10% of the energy used by an incandescent bulb is converted into visible light, while the rest is given off as heat.

This grow light can harm plants, as too much heat can dry them out and damage their leaves.

On the other hand, LED lights are much more efficient as they convert about 90% of their light. They also use much less energy than regular incandescent bulbs while still providing a whole spectrum of light perfect for plant growth.

LEDs also produce very little heat, so you don't have to worry about harming your plants.

Overall, regular lights are a great way to help plants grow. Just make sure that you keep an eye on the intensity of the grow light and the amount of light that the plant is getting.

Weed plant under purple light

Do Indoor Lights Help Plants Grow?

The answer is yes, but it depends on your lightbulb. Incandescent bulbs, for example, give off a lot of heat and not much grow light, so they're not great for growing plants.

On the other hand, fluorescent light bulbs emit a lot of light that is blue, making them ideal for growing plants indoors.

However, it's important to note that not all fluorescent light bulbs are created equal. Some emit more light that is blue than others, so check the label before purchasing.

Blue light, on the other hand, is perfect for plants. You can get light that is blue from unique grow lights like LED bulbs, or you can get it from regular lightbulbs that have a blue tint.

Ultimately, whether indoor lights help plants grow depends on your lightbulb. If you want to boost your plants, look for a bulb that emits plenty of light that is blue.

What Types Of Grow Light Bulbs Can Be Used To Grow Plants Indoors?

There are a few different types of grow light bulbs that you can use to help plants grow indoors. These include incandescent bulbs, fluorescent bulbs, LED bulbs, Hydroponic Bulbs, and Halogen Bulbs.

Bulbs on a wooden table.

Incandescent Bulbs

Incandescent bulbs are a traditional choice for light. They give off a lot of grow light, but they also generate too much heat. This can be damaging to plants. For this reason, incandescent lights are not the best choice for plant growth.

Fluorescent Bulbs

Fluorescent lights are a popular choice for growing plants indoors. They emit blue and white light, which is perfect for promoting healthy growth in plants.

Additionally, fluorescent light bulbs tend to have a higher color temperature than incandescent bulbs, making them better for growing plants indoors.

However, fluorescent bulbs can be more expensive upfront and may need to be replaced more frequently than incandescent bulbs.

LED Bulbs

LED light bulbs are a newer technology, and it's becoming more popular for growing plants indoors.

LED bulbs emit light in a particular spectrum of colors, which you can tune to promote healthy plant growth.

Additionally, LED bulbs are much cooler than incandescent or fluorescent bulbs, making them safer for plants.

However, LED bulbs can be more expensive upfront and may require special fixtures to work properly.

Colorful LED Bulbs

Hydroponic Bulbs

Hydroponic bulbs are ideal for growing plants indoors, as they provide a full spectrum of light optimized for plant growth. These grow lights use a combination of different colors and wavelengths, including blue and white light.

Additionally, hydroponic bulbs feature a color temperature tailored to the individual needs of different types of plants.

For example, some plants may respond better to warmer or cooler lighting conditions, depending on their stage of development.

Overall, hydroponic bulbs are energy efficient and are an excellent choice for growing healthy and vibrant indoor plants.

Halogen Bulbs

Halogen bulbs are a type of incandescent bulb that is often used for growing plants indoors. Halogen bulbs give off a lot of grow light, but they also generate too much heat.

For this reason, halogen bulbs are not the best choice for plant growth. Additionally, these bulbs can be more expensive upfront and may need to be replaced more frequently than incandescent bulbs.

Flat lightbulb

Grow Lights Vs. Regular Lights: How Are They Different, And What Should You Use?

When it comes to growing plants indoors, many lighting options are available.

Regular bulbs are widely used for everyday household tasks, but they may not offer the optimal level of light required for plant growth.

On the other hand, grow lights use specialized bulbs that emit different light colors to simulate natural sunlight.

These lights are typically considered superior for plant growth and development, mainly because they can replicate specific blue and white light wavelengths than standard bulbs lack.

Man holding a cannabis plant

Additionally, grow lights often have a higher color temperature than regular light bulbs, promoting healthy plant growth.

Ultimately, when deciding whether to use regular or grow lights for indoor gardening, it is essential to consider your needs as a gardener and your budget.

However, most experts would agree that grow lights offer several advantages over standard bulbs and represent the optimal tool for indoor plant cultivation.

How To Set Up The Lighting For Your Indoor Plant

You've finally done it. You've brought a beautiful, leafy green indoor plant to liven up your living space. But before you can sit back and enjoy your new greenery, there's one more task: setting up the lighting.

Indoor plants need light to photosynthesize and grow, but not just any light will do. To choose the suitable light bulbs for your plants, you'll need to consider a few factors such as intensity, color temperature, and duration.


The first thing to consider is how much light your plant needs. This will vary depending on the type of plant, but as a general rule of thumb, most plants need at least four hours of direct sunlight each day.

If you don't have a spot in your home that gets that much natural light, you'll need to supplement with artificial light.

Light intensity of bulbs

There are a few different ways to measure light intensity, but the most common unit is lux. One lux is equal to the light intensity of one candle that's one meter away.

For reference, a sunny day has an intensity of around 30,000 lux, while a cloudy day has an intensity of about 7,000 lux.

Ideally, you want to provide your plants with an intensity of at least 2,000 lux for four hours each day. Suppose you can't find light bulbs that provide that much light, don't worry. You can always place your plants closer to the light source to make up for it.

Color Temperature

The next thing to consider is color temperature. This is measured in Kelvin, and it refers to the "warmth" or "coolness" of a light. For example, light with a color temperature of 2,700K will be warmer (more yellow/red) than light with a color temperature of 6,500K.

Most plants prefer light that's on the cooler side, around 6,500K. However, some varieties do better with warmer light, around 3,000K.

If you're not sure what color temperature is best for your plant, you are on the side of cooler light.

Color temperature of light bulbs


The last thing to consider is duration, or how long your plant will be exposed to light each day. Most plants need at least four hours of light each day, as we mentioned before.

However, some plants may need more (up to 12 hours), while others may need less (two hours).

If you're not sure how much light your plant needs, it's best to start with four hours and adjust with time.

You can always add more light if your plant seems to be struggling, but too much light can be just as harmful as too little light.

Final Verdict

So, do regular light bulbs help plants grow? The answer is a resounding yes! Regular bulbs provide the light that plants need to photosynthesize and produce food for themselves.

While other light bulbs may be more effective for plant growth, regular light bulbs are an excellent option for those who want to start growing plants indoors.

If you need more guidance for all your indoor growing needs, contact 420 Green Thumb, and one of our experts will be happy to help you out!

🌿  Join my "growing" community 
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About the author 


I discovered the benefits of Cannabis at a young age in 2002, with years of trial and error, my knowledge grew just like my plants. As my love for cannabis unfolded I began to teach and learn, trying to gain as much information and practical growing experience.

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