Spectrum. Photons. Micromoles. Watts. Wavelengths. PAR. PPF. PPFD. HPS. LED. MH. That’s not exactly a welcoming string of phrases—whether you’re a cannabis grower or not. Even many, if not most, cultivators still question their lighting decisions, knowledge and choices. They measure (or don’t), they test (or don’t), and they often wonder if they can improve their methods of measuring and testing.

While many factors contribute to the way you achieve your goals—whether those goals are yield, plant shape and size, overall quality, smell, cannabinoid profiles, product consistency or something else—few things impact cannabis, or plants in general, more than light.

The fact is, if you’re growing indoors or in a greenhouse, you’re blocking the sun in some capacity. And the need to replace that sunlight is the crux of your lighting needs. Some growers, and plant physiologists especially, might be taking lighting a step further by looking into whether you can enhance certain aspects of plant growth and development by altering light spectrum and intensity (see the case studies of cultivation companies LivWell Enlightened HealthOutCo as well as researcher Dr. Dean Kopsell). And one day, there may be an extensively researched and proven guide for cannabis lighting to achieve your goals and desired effects on your plants. As of today, however, lighting remains somewhat of an experiment for many. But those experiments are paying off.

Here, in Cannabis Business Times’ second annual “State of the Lighting Market” report, we look at trends regarding lighting practices among cannabis cultivators to help you gain a bird’s-eye view of what your peers are doing.

Thanks to the generous support of Fluence Bioengineering, Cannabis Business Times was able to bring on third-party, nationally recognized research company Readex Research to survey cultivators throughout North America again this year to look at lighting usage and related processes. We also share the results of new research being conducted, as well as review best practices and the benefits of energy efficiency and new opportunities for receiving greater cost savings from energy companies, and more.