Chloroplasts and Chlorophyll
Inside every plant are cells known as chloroplasts. These chloroplasts are the engine that drives the photosynthesis process. It might be easier to think about these chloroplasts as the factory floor where a product first starts – in this case your product is plants. Inside these chloroplasts is something called chlorophyll and it’s this substance that gives plants their familiar green color. The chlorophyll enables the plants to absorb sunlight and turn it into useful energy that helps the plant to grow.
Sunlight is used to create sugars which are used for food energy and plants. Essentially, the light from the sun kicks the manufacturing process into high gear. The chlorophyll absorbs that sunlight and uses it to combine CO2 and H2O (water), which produces sugar that it can use for energy as well as a waste product we like to call oxygen. The problem with an indoor grow operation is that direct sunlight isn’t available to kick the photosynthesis process into gear, and that’s why we need artificial light such as LEDs to act as a replacement. It’s important to have the right type of light from the spectrum of colors available to ensure the natural pattern of growth is copied as closely as possible. This will result in healthy plants and great crop yields.
How a Plant Uses Glucose
Your plants will use the sugar produced in this photosynthesis process for all aspects of their growth. It’s essential during the seeding stage and right on through to the flowering and fruit stages as well. Without this sugar your plants simply wouldn’t grow.
The Importance of Respiration
Another process that plants use for healthy growth is something called respiration. As your plants use the glucose (sugar) they produced during the photosynthesis process they also initiate another process called respiration, which is the result of a chemical reaction in combination with oxygen that produces both water and CO2. This process creates extra energy that also helps the plants to grow healthier and stronger. It’s this part of the process that helps plants to keep going even when they’re not receiving the light they need. The respiration process generally creates more sugar than the plants need and that extra sugar is stored to be used during those lean times; all of this process begins with making sure your plants have enough light to begin the photosynthesis process.