LED Grower achieves 2 lbs per California LightWorks SolarStorm 880 fixture!!!

I was asked by California LightWorks to contact the grower Jay S. who had graciously offered to document his grow in which he has been consistently achieving 2 lbs per SolarStorm 880 fixture. This is HPS caliber yields and as you can see in the pictures, his quality is excellent.  This Case Study will be published elsewhere but you’re seeing it first here on Silas Sativarius!


“I tried other LED’s, but California Lightworks is  the only one that worked for me” – Jay. S

While LED’s are gaining wide-spread popularity in the Cannabis cultivation community due to their high efficiency, lower heat gain, spectral precision, and low maintenance, there is still wide-spread skepticism throughout the Cannabis community as to whether LED’s, (at roughly 60-70% of the input power of HPS) can get comparable yields to those achieved with 1000 watt HPS lights.

California LightWorks has been working intensively with select high-end professional growers and horticultural scientists to not only optimize our LED fixture performance, but also identify environmental and/or nutritional changes that may help you get the maximum benefit from this powerful new technology. Many of those changes can be found in our LED primer.

Recently, we were very excited to hear that one of our growers was regularly achieving yields of 2 lbs of high quality, manicured flower, with various strains, for each CLW 880 light, running at roughly 650 input watts. This grower Jay S., has kindly offered to share with our community, in detail, how he is accomplishing these terrific yields.


Jay’s Grow–room Specifics:

  • Veg:             100 sq. ft. / 9’ ceilings / 8 SolarFlare 220’s
  • Flower:        200 sq. ft. (13×15) / 7 SolarStorm 880’s, 3 SolarStorm 440’s
  • System:        5 Gallon, non-circulating deep-water culture w/ hydroton
  • Nutrients:    Full Botanicair line (per label recommendations)
  • Co2:             1350 PPM continuous during light period.
  • Temp:           80-81 degrees f.
  • Cycle:           Perpetual Harvest,  1/4 of the room every 2 weeks.


Veg plant crop

Jay says that he tops his plants very early, and multiple times to create a plant that has multiple branches with many nodes, but a very short base stem. His plants average around 5-6 feet tall at the end of flower. His room temperature is 80-81 deg. f. Jay said he is currently trying the elevated temps recommended in the LED primer and he is excited by the results so far.

Notice the beautiful crowned canopy of the plants. This insures that all the buds receive unobstructed light. Shaping the plant is essential for high yields when not using SOG or SCROG techniques.

_DSC1529“If you ensure that all branches receive full light levels at all times, the plants will not stretch and they will have thicker branches with dense flower nodes.”

Jays Tips:

  1. Thicker stems / branches = higher yields
  2. Shape the plant for maximum light exposure.

Jay’s yields are quite impressive– 

“I have 3 plants for every 2 SolarStorm 880’s. I get an average of 1.3 lbs per plant or roughly 2 lbs per SS880.”

_DSC1523C_DSC1489While there are other approaches we have heard are achieving HPS comparable yields using our SolarStorm and Solar Flare LED systems, we want to thank Jay for allowing us to document exactly how he does it, and his real world results and images so all our growers can have a template for achieving his exceptional results.


Plants absorption of light and the link to CO2 concentrations

It is well known that CO2 levels can be varied well above ambient levels with increases in plant growth. Contrary to popular thought, university studies have documented benefits in CO2 enrichment above 20,000ppm. Yes that’s twenty-thousand PPM. (Warning! Co2 concentrations above 3000 for extended periods can cause headaches in humans and above 5000 can be lethal. So keep it under 3000 at all times.)

But it is commonly thought that lighting levels have a fixed limit, roughly that of high noon sunlight or 10,000 lumens or around 2000 µmol / m2 / s.

But the following graph found on Plants in Action, a web site produced by an Australian university suggests something very different.


To simplify, the far right of the Photon Irradiance scale or 2000 µmol / m2 / s is roughly high noon sunlight.

The three lines are at roughly 150ppm, 350 and 1000 CO2 levels respectively.

The vertical scale is actual absorption of CO2 by the plant, which is directly proportional to actual plant growth.

The interesting thing to note is that at 1000 ppm CO2, the line is still rising up and has not flattened off like it did on the lower 2 lines. That means that plant growth is still increasing at light levels ABOVE that of noon sun, when CO2 enrichment is above 1000ppm.

It’s too bad the graphs don’t continue on for higher CO2 and light levels, but it can be inferred from this graph that at much higher levels, say 2000ppm CO2, one might be able to using lighting levels as high as 3000 µmol / m2 / s .

But this is very important information, because while electricity tends to be the most expensive aspect of an indoor grow, the next most costly is the real estate itself, and more yield per sq foot of floor space can be a big bonus for certain space challenged grows. Especially with LED’s where extremely high light levels can be achieved without the issues of excessive Heat / InfraRed.

I will be performing some tests of this in the future and I welcome anyone who has experience with running light levels significantly above that of the sun.

To those who grow we salute you!