For me, one of the biggest challenges to growing plants inside my home has always been finding a space that offers enough light. For years I focused on low-light indoor plants, like snake plants, golden pothos, and spider plants. But now, thanks to my LED grow lights, I have expanded my indoor plant collection to include light lovers, like succulents, cacti, and jade plants. In fact, I even use my LED grow lights to start seeds indoors, grow microgreens, and enjoy a bumper crop of shoots like pea and sunflower shoots.
Today I’d like to introduce you to the Oslo LED Grow Light Garden, which includes 1-tier, 2-tier, and 4-tier models for any sized indoor space. These products are featured on Savvy Gardening thanks to the sponsorship of Gardener’s Supply Company, an employee-owned company that builds and designs many of their innovative products.
What are LED grow lights?
LED stands for light-emitting diode. An LED is basically a semiconductor that produces light when electrical current flows through it. The semiconductors, or diodes, restrict the flow of the electrons which makes them emit light. Plants can then use the light for photosynthesis. The process is very efficient and releases little heat.
LED technology allows growers to select different bulbs for different growth stages. I recently visited a vertical urban farm where the LED fixtures threw off red light and blue light to encourage the vegetable crops to flower and fruit. It was super interesting, but it also looked like a disco and that isn’t the type of light most gardeners want in their indoor living spaces. However, many LED grow lights are classified as full spectrum which means they closely resemble natural sunlight and emit white light that is pleasing to the eye. This is the type of bulb you’ll find in the Oslo LED Grow Light Gardens.
The benefits of using an LED grow light
Now that we understand a bit more about what an LED grow light is, let’s look at the many advantages they offer, year-round, to indoor gardeners.
- Efficiency: The biggest advantage of LEDs is efficiency. According to the Department of Energy, LEDs offer the most energy-efficient lighting technology. The bulbs use about half of the energy as fluorescent bulbs, which is better for the environment and better for your wallet.
- Greater light intensity: With my old fluorescent grow lights I hung the fixtures on chains so I could move them up or down to keep the bulbs close to the top of the plants’ canopy. If the bulbs were more than a couple of inches away, the amount of light the plants received was inadequate and they grew leggy. With high-output LED lamps, you don’t need to worry about light intensity or fuss with moving light fixtures to be closer to the tops of plants or seedings.
- Less heat: Unlike fluorescent bulbs, LEDs emit little heat. In fact, LEDs run up to 80 per cent cooler than fluorescent fixtures. Why does that matter? Excessive heat can affect moisture levels in the soil and foliage as well as potentially burn the leaves.
- Long-lived light: LEDs have a long lifespan, typically lasting for up to 50,000 hours of use. That’s about five times longer than fluorescent bulbs. This is convenient for the gardener but also reduces waste.
- Cost effective: LED technology has come a long way over the past few years. One benefit of this is that prices of LED grow light units have declined. Combine this with their lower operation costs and LED grow lights are a cost-effective option for indoor gardeners.
How to select an LED grow light
When choosing an LED grow light for your indoor garden, there are a few questions you should ask yourself. Here’s what to keep in mind:
What types of plants do you wish to grow?
If you peek beneath my grow lights you’ll see that for most of the year, I have a mixture of houseplants, microgreens, leafy greens, and culinary herbs. From February through May, I also use grow lights to start trays of vegetable, flower, and herb seeds. The seedlings are eventually transplanted into my outdoor garden. I’ve also used LED grow lights to grow tomatoes, strawberries, and peppers indoors. Grow lights are also handy for plant propagation. It’s important to understand how much light various types of plants need. I suggest researching the types of plants you wish to grow to learn their specific requirements. When I was shopping for grow lights, I knew that I wanted multipurpose, full-spectrum LED grow lights that could be used to grow a wide selection of plants.
How large are your plants?
If you’re growing houseplants, like Ledebouria, also consider plant growth and size; their current size and the size they’ll be in a few short years. Be a savvy shopper and buy a fixture that can grow with your plants. One of the advantages of Oslo LED Grow Light Gardens is that the shelves flip up to offer extra head room to tall plants.
How much space do you have for a fixture?
Before you choose a grow light, consider your indoor space. Grow lights for seed starting are often set up in a basement or out-of-the-way area like a guest bedroom. Apartment and condo dwellers don’t often have such spaces and need to incorporate LED grow lights into their living areas. My advice is to select a grow light that is functional and stylish, so you can display it in your living spaces.
My Oslo 4-Tier LED Grow Light Garden has become a favorite part of my home decor. It sits in a spot where I used to have a cluttered bookshelf. Now that messy corner has been turned into an indoor jungle. If you don’t have space for a tall light stand, you may want to try a smaller 2-tier unit or even a tabletop model like the Oslo 1-Tier LED Grow Light Garden. It’s compact enough that it can be tucked beneath most kitchen counters or placed on a small table.
Do you need a mobile grow light garden?
Grow light units, particularly those with two or more tiers, often come with castors or wheels. I’ve found this to be a handy feature as I do sometimes move my 4-tier light stand to a different spot. Plus, stands with castors or wheels are less likely to scratch your floor.
What other features are beneficial?
I’ve used many types of grow lights over the years and there are certain features and accessories that are nice to have. At the top of my list would be trays to contain mess. The Oslo LED Grow Light Gardens offer optional matching trays to prevent water and soil spills. I also love how quick and easy they are to set up. Plus, the magnetic LED light fixtures attach to the metal shelves with a satisfying snap. They’re not fixed in place, however, and you can easily move them around as needed.
Learn more about the Oslo LED Grow Light Gardens in this video.
Grow lights for indoor plants
Oslo LED Grow Light Gardens have attractive and sturdy powder-coated steel frames and magnetic LED fixtures. They offer excellent coverage and provide full-spectrum light to different types of plants. They’re very quick to set up and all fold flat for convenient storage. Below you’ll learn more about the three options; a 1-Tier, 2-Tier, and 4-Tier LED Grow Light Garden.
Oslo 1-Tier LED Grow Light Garden
Need a grow light for a compact space? Look no further than the Oslo 1-Tier LED Grow Light Garden. This Gardener’s Supply Company exclusive measures 26 inches wide, 13 inches deep and 18 inches tall. It fits beneath most kitchen cabinets, but can also be placed on a countertop, or side table. Or, add one to your office space to provide lush greenery and illumination. It’s ideal for growing culinary herbs like basil, parsley, and oregano, as well as houseplants and spring seedlings.
Oslo 2-Tier LED Grow Light Garden
Offering double the growing space of the 1-Tier unit, this attractive 2-Tier grow light measures 26 inches wide, 13 inches deep, and 33 1/2 inches tall. Use it to start trays of seeds, grow microgreens, or to provide light for small to medium sized houseplants. Got bigger plants? The fold up shelves offer maximum headroom for tall indoor plants like jade and snake plants.
Oslo 4-Tier LED Grow Light Garden
The Oslo 4-Tier LED Grow Light Garden is the ultimate set up for seed starters as well as houseplant enthusiasts. This unit is super flexible, allowing you to grow a variety of plant types and sizes. Like the 2-Tier model, the shelves fold up to accommodate bigger plants. I appreciated this feature when my paperwhite plants grew two feet tall! The cream-colored steel frame is both decorative and sturdy. The 4-tier unit measures 26 inches wide, 13 inches deep, and 61 inches tall.
A big thank you to Gardener’s Supply Company for sponsoring this article and allowing us to share more about LED grow lights.
For further reading about indoor gardening, be sure to check out these articles:
- How to grow kale indoors
- Pea shoots and sprouts: a step by step guide
- 11 Indoor food garden ideas
- String of dolphins: How to care for this unique houseplant
Now that you know more about light options, are you interested in the best LED grow lights for your indoor plants?
great tips on indoor gardening and love the grow lights, especially since days are so short and dark this time of year!
peter prosser says
If you cut the plastic globe off of a regular screw in led light,you have a really bright light on the cheap.
Gardeners does not ship to Canada, right? 😩
Niki Jabbour says
Not at the moment… sorry Ella!! – Niki
Hi Niki, I am in Canada and the Garden Supply Company does not ship outside of the USA. Do you have suggestions for other grow light systems (shelves, lighting, and possibly trays) that are available in Canada? Thank you
Niki Jabbour says
Hi Dora, sure thing!! I have a 3 tier LED light stand that I bought from Lee Valley. They also have smaller LED light stands as well. I’m not sure where you are, but my local garden supply store (Halifax Seed) also sells a variety of grow lights. Many garden centres and garden supply stores across Canada carry grow lights. You can DIY a light stand using a metal kitchen/pantry rack or wooden shelf. Just hang LED or fluorescent grow lights from the different tiers. Lot’s of options!! Hope this helps. – Niki