These LED lamps were in the LED Living Technologies booth at the Go Green Expo in New York City. This was my first encounter with LED lights of this type up close and personal. It was most impressive to measure the light output of these lamps. High light output at low energy cost creates exciting possibilities for both edible and decorative plant lighting.
For example, the lamp in the upper left is a four-foot strip that emulates a fluorescent tube lamp. I believe it produces enough light to grow tomatoes indoors. It would be interesting to grow a staked tomato vine next to this lamp mounted vertically.
I would grow the plant in a sub-irrigated planter mounted on a rotating pedestal for even light distribution.
Seeing these lights reinforces my belief that this is the dawn of a new era in indoor plant growing and maintenance. What awesome potential LED lighting offers for new vistas in urban greenscaping.
The Z-Bar LED Desk Lamp - Better a living plant than a dead flower.
I really like the Z-Bar lamp and think it would make a cool (and efficient) plant lamp. You can see in the video how flexible and versatile it is. These LED desk lamps are pricey now but it won't be long before they become more affordable.
The Z-Bar was at the top of Metaefficient's list of best desk lamps for 2009.
This cool LED task lamp is from the U.K. I haven't tried it out but it looks like it would make an excellent lamp for the task of lighting a plant and your desk. It has 55 low-energy using LEDs. It would cost about $74 U.S. (not including shipping) if it were available here.
Features This revolutionary lamp is bulb free, using no fewer than 55 Light Emitting Diodes to produce a strong beam of bright white light far better for your eyes than ‘yellow’ incandescent light. And the lamp uses just 6W of electricity - up to 90% less than an ordinary light - because it channels its energy into creating cold light rather than heat. The 55-LED Task Lamp is the lamp of the future.
Styled in chromed steel with adjustable angle neck
Max. height 24¼" (61.5cm)
LEDs last for up to 100,000 hours, so there’s no hassle or cost involved in replacements
I have high hopes that LED lighting will open new paths for both decorative and edible urban greenscaping, As we city dwellers know, adequate lighting is often the limiting factor. This news from the U.K. is most encouraging.
A lighting revolution is on the way that could end at the flick of a switch the battle between supporters of conventional bulbs and the eco-friendly variety.
Cambridge University researchers have developed cheap, light-emitting diode (LED) bulbs that produce brilliant light but use very little electricity. They will cost £2 and last up to 60 years.
Despite being smaller than a penny, they are 12 times more efficient than conventional tungsten bulbs and three times more efficient than the unpopular fluorescent low-energy versions.
Cambridge University professor Colin Humphreys with his newly developed LED that has a lifespan of 60 years and costs just £2
Even better, the bulbs fully illuminate instantly, unlike the current generation of eco-bulbs.
It is reckoned the bulbs, which were funded by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council, could slash household lighting bills by three-quarters.
An Inhabitat post about this solar cell module in plant form reminded me that I had seen it earlier this year on the Japanese website Tach-on!.
On seeing this, my thought was that perhaps one day in the future solar power could be used to maintain indoor houseplants. Aside from our reactionary horticultural education system, light is the limiting factor for the use of plants in buildings.
What if we could position a small solar collector like this in a sunlit location? It could then power lights for our indoor plants. Solar power and highly efficient LED lighting could one day propel a great leap forward in the use of urban greenscaping and urban agriculture.
Let's all hope that we find the forward looking leadership to make it happen.
Will the green home of the future have L.E.D lighting sufficient to maintain decorative plants or even better to grow edible plants?
This article from The New York Times is encouraging. Incidentally I read this article in context of how misinformed the Times reporters can be regarding the maintenance and growing of container plants. That is a subject that I'm qualified to critique professionally.
However, I simply don't know enough about L.E.D. lighting technology to analyze this article in detail. If you do, please comment for the benefit of other readers. Here are some reader reviews of the article.
There is obviously significant money betting on an L.E.D. future. Will the living plants sector of the “green” movement be a significant player? Only time will tell, but the past is not a good precursor of the future.
Hopefully, projects like the “Smart Home” in Chicago, will soon demonstrate the use of L.E.D. plant lighting along with sub-irrigated planters. It will certainly make these homes a lot greener.