LED's for growing indoor herb garden? brainstorming.

So, the Mrs wants to grow 1x basil/thyme plant indoors. I went to walmart and bought a 24” 17W flourescent grow light and mounted it under the kitchen Cupboard. Its a weak light to say the least. These plants are gonna grow thin and lanky.

Also, is there any place to buy maybe some underdriven CREE’s or low-heat Cree strip lights that can be plugged into a typical US 120V outlet?

Any suggestions on how to make one? or finding a suiitable driver?

Thinking of trying to make one myself, but dont know the first thing of how I would regulate the current of a 120v socket… Guess I would need some sort of buck driver?

Im thinking 4x Underdriven XML U2 (6500K) that are putting out 200 lumens each shouldnt get hot,and 800 Lumens over top 2 plants should be more than enough. the strip only needs to be around 12 inches long. will be on continuously for 16 hours, and off for 8. Is this feasible for a XML @ 200 lumens?

Any thoughts/concepts? Or am I talking nonsense?

These 17 W lamp should do the job quite well…? I am wondering what you have bought?
Is it a neon tube or what?

There are drivers for power sockets available, I have seen some for 12V LEDs but if you put some XMLs in series this will work…

But I still think that this is not a light problem…is it really a plant lamp??

I know if you have less light or a wrong spectrum plants could get lanky or how I would call it Etiolement.

One question more, what about growing plants next to a window? That’s how I have done it for decades

i actually have no window suitable for growing plants in at my house. yeah, plants need a certain spectrum or UV rays… cant remember if its UVA or UVB, think its A…

CREE White LED’s are probably horrible for growing plants. I suspect you’ll want a combination of Royal Blue and Red, but I don’t grow pot herbs… I’d search google for “LED Grow Light” - I’m sure there are whole forums dedicated to growing the best pot herbs…


Yeah I wish I had a window to grow the herbs in. There are no windows in my kitchen, only in the dining room, but nowhere to put the plant where my kids wont knock it over(two boys under 5). So Im stuck with mounting a growlight under the kitchen Cabinet. Ill just see how this one I have does.

Heres the one i got:

says its 1000+ lumens… I guess ill see how it goes with this one.

I don't know if LEDs can be used for growing plants, but the ones you bought should work. It does not have to bright as sunlight to grow plants. We used flourescent lights many times, to grow plants in winter. I purchased 4' lights from Lowes and bought the grow bulbs. More powerful than yours, but if you make sure the plants are very close to the light, it should work.

These seem to work :

Technical information

- 56 Watt Cree XP-E and Rebel LED Power, total power consumption max. 65 Watt

- 3 selectable positions; (1) Seedlings /cuttings, (2) Early weeks, (3) Full position. Easily selectable by Switch

- 4 Royal Blue XT-E, 27 Red XP-E 501 and 2 DeepRed Rebel Led’s

- Each Led has it’s own reflector, either 106 or 123 degrees, therefore optimal control of the light pattern

- Metal Core PCB for the very best cooling

- No light losses caused by glass or plastic barriers in front of the LED’s

- External waterproof power supply with a 2 meter cable, no heat contribution to the LED’s

  • Size 26 cm * 38 cm , 10” * 15”. Height only 4 cm, 1.6”
  • Recommended maximum grow area 50*60 cm, 20” * 24”

+1. With only 1000 lumens available every inch counts.

Wow, impressive. And looks expensive too. But fluorescent tubes are not that much less efficient than leds and still way cheaper when you need any considerate amount of lumens. I think they are still the way to go for your plants.

I’d stick to flourescents. You can also buy Full Spectrum CFLs of just about any wattage, which you can easily put in any fixture.
As far as thin and weedy, this is a function of the LIGHT SPECTRUM not the power of the light necessarily. (well, as long as the plants have enough light and arent having to ‘reach’ for it). Also it helps to blow on the plants occasionally to simulate some wind to thicken them up.

Check out the kick ass grow light they have.

I personally have a 60 Watt one (not watt-equivalent but real 60W) which is super bright. check 1000bulbs.com

LEDs are just too expensive. Yeah you can target the spectrum a bit better but they cost too much and its too specialized.

Good luck with your pot….ted plants! :wink:

Get the plants close to the light to avoid long and straggly. The loss of output is exponential with distance from the light source and the plant is hunting the light which is why it goes long and thin. Keep it close and the internode length stays much shorter and you get stocky plants.

cant help with making one myself but this information on LED grow lights might be relevant to you LedHorticulture.com is for sale | HugeDomains

My original germination was pretty good around 75-80%. I had trouble with unexpected growth (cannabis is such a wonderful plant Alien OG Strain Information and Review ), and indoor growing environment proved too small. Plants which survived this growth congestion were then allowed to grow and mature outdoors. A majority (18 of 30) proved to be males, but the 12 females produced good smoke as well as the F1 generation seeds. Not sure if this was wind pollenation from native hemp, but I suspect that I failed to recognized the male traits in several plants before they were removed. Last year I used this F1 seed with good result, high germination rate, grew fewer healthy plants, and minimal seed production (F2 generation). I did master cloning techniques but lost the mother plants due to technical errors.