Mushroom Grow Light (Incl. AFFORDABLE models)

Do Mushrooms Need Light to Grow?

Mushrooms don’t actually need light to grow. They’re not plants and they don’t enter a state of photosynthesis, meaning they can grow in complete darkness.

Many commercial-level mushroom farms that produce culinary-grade fungus for grocery stores actually do so in complete blackness. Some of these farms are located in abandoned mineshafts and other similar places, which provide for a comfortable growing environment for fungi.

Most species of mushrooms are more than 9/10 water, so they thrive best in humid conditions. Light tends to scatter humidity, which is why so many growers have a preference for dark conditions.

That being said, light does make mushrooms somewhat darker. In some cases, that can translate them into being tastier as long as you make sure to not eliminate any humidity in the process.

What Does Light Do for Mushrooms?

Light can encourage the growth of certain types of colonies and it may lead to larger flushes during the fruiting process. Most notably, it can cause the exterior growth of many mushrooms to darken to some degree, which might positively contribute to their flavor.

Unfortunately, excessive amounts of light can dry some mushrooms out, which is why beginners may want to limit the length of time that they use a growth light for. This is especially true of anybody who is growing more fragile types of fungus that would quickly die without a healthy amount of moisture.

Since mushrooms don’t actually photosynthesize, some of them remain largely unaffected by light.

Does it Help Some Mushrooms More than Others?

Sturdy mushrooms, like pink and blue oysters, are generally the ones that light can help most. While light has been known to produce brilliant flourishes when used with fragile fungi like morels, it also tends to be the most destructive when given to them.

Certain types of fragile fungi, like pine mushrooms, can quickly become dried out when exposed to even small amounts of light. Their preference for darker living conditions is precisely why they’re normally found right underneath the branches of trees, growing around their bases.

Other types of mushrooms, especially those that grow naturally in lawns, wouldn’t really be impacted much either way. These usually aren’t of much culinary interest, of course, but it does explain how they can grow so reliably in full sunlight.

Does Light Speed Up Colonization of Substrate?

Assuming that your substrate is extremely moist, introducing light into the equation can help speed up the colonization of it. That’s why so many enthusiasts who grow mushrooms on coffee grounds will do so in clear plastic bags.

The problem is that when you expose this kind of environment to light, it could heat up really quickly and vaporize the moisture. Those who want to use an artificial light source to speed up the colonization of a substrate will want to make sure that they don’t start to get bubbles of water on the sides of the bag they have their material in.

When this happens, move it to a cooler area and turn off the lights to preserve the growth that you currently have.

Does Light Lead to Bigger Flushes During Fruiting?

Light can indeed lead to bigger flushes, but it only does so if the light is applied in a way that doesn’t burn off extra humidity. Some edible fungi, like morels, can get very big when exposed to light at the right time.

The problem is that natural sunlight has a tendency to burn off the moisture that lets them grow, which is why large fruiting morels are so rare in the natural environment. Those that are exposed to light and don’t suffer from these problems can quickly become extremely valuable to collectors of culinary-grade mushrooms.

Enthusiasts who want to use light to try and create bigger flushes would do well to ensure that they don’t turn the lights on for too long. This could zap away the moisture that more delicate mushrooms need.

What Light is Best for Colonization?

Note: If you click some of the links in this article we may earn a small commission at no additional cost to you.

Spider Farmer’s SF-4000 is a massive 5×5 foot full spectrum growth light that was designed to work with authentic Samsung LM301B diodes. Since you can dim it down without causing the light to flicker, it’s become an attractive option for those who are working with sensitive mushroom colonies.

2022 Newest SPIDER FARMER SF4000 LED Grow Light 5x5 ft Coverage with Samsung LM301B Diodes & MeanWell Driver Dimmable 450W Commercial Full Spectrum Grow Lamps for Indoor Plants 2.7 umol/J
  • 2022 NEW VERSION LOWER RUNNING COSTS & HIGHER-QUALITY YIELDS: SPIDER FARMER LED Grow Lights utilize the latest in high yielding LEDs technology today-Samsung LM301B diodes, high Energy Efficiency with 2.7 umol/J, delivers powerful light output and uniform canopy penetration to resulting maximum higher yields. Only consumes 450w, running 50% less power than the HPS or other SMD LEDs or Blurple lamps. Veg coverage is 5 x 5 ft, Flowering coverage is 4 x4 ft.
  • NEW DIODES ARRANGEMENT & DIMMING DESIGN: Upgraded SF4000 growing lights. The diodes arrangement gathered at the edge makes the PPFD more uniform, and the dimming knob be adjusted the light intensity at liberty. Multi-light Connection with unified dimming especially beneficial for large area of indoor growing and commercial planting.
  • IDEAL FOR ALL GROWTH STAGES: Excellent full spectrum- white, blue, red and IR (3000K, 5000K, 660nm and IR 760nm). 3000K diodes providing more reddish light and the 5000K providing more blueish. The 660nm red and IR light is especially useful during bloom, where it speeds up flowering time and boost yields. Turn your seeds into your own supply. And the light looks fairly natural, so it's good for accurately monitoring plant health.
  • WELL MADE & SOLID CONSTRUCTION: No Fan Noise Free. High Safety performance MEAN WELL Driver, Fair Waterproofing. Update aluminum material is thick and sturdy, doesn't put out a tremendous amount of heat, high-quality protective covers for cables; User-Friendly Packaging. Quality components mean the light lasts longer, but they also save you money.
  • VALUE FOR THE MONEY: SPIDER FARMER LED Plant Lights are often copied but will never have our quality or commitment, we provides 5 years of after-service of local maintenance center(US/CA/UK/DE). Make sure you purchase authentic Spider Farmer grow lights, really can give you need from a high-quality grow lights – at a price that is affordable. For any questions, feel free to e-mail us and we will help you resolve it. Quality backed by our ironclad!!!


  • 3000-5000K color temperature light source
  • Dimmable LEDs
  • 760nm IR light source
  • Features mount points for over 1,200 individual bulbs
  • Simple, accurate controls


  • Needs to be assembled
  • Semiconductors sold separately

What Light is Best for Fruiting?

Mars Hydro TSW coverage lamps are dimmable and were originally designed for hydroponic installations, which make them very customizable. They can support just under 700 LEDs, so they’ll work with almost any sized mushroom growth layout.

MARS HYDRO TSW 2000 Led Grow Light 300 Watt 4x4ft Coverage Full Spectrum Growing Lamps for Indoor Plants Dimmable Daisy Chain Seeding Veg Bloom Light for Hydroponics Greenhouse Indoor LED Grow
  • HIGH REFLECTIVE HOOD DESIGN Unique high reflective aluminum hood reduce light lost to aisles and walls, increase the light intensity up to 30% more than other non-reflector led grow lights. Maximize the use of all light, concentrate more light, increase light penetration, and improve PAR output and energy efficiency.
  • LOW ENERGY CONSUMPTION LED GROW LIGHT: Consuming only 300 Watts true output with 704 LEDs, can replace a 450Watt HPS/CMH grow lights! It saves up to 50% more energy than other led grow lights. Perfect for 3.5x3.5ft bloom stage, 4x4ft veg stage. Over 90% of light energy can be absorbed by plants, higher intensity in a MARS HYDRO grow tent, reflective area, or by crossing over using multiple TSW2000.
  • UPGRADED COMMERCIAL LED GROW LIGHT, easy dimming & daisy chain function, up to 30 multi-lights connected, convenient main light controlled; 2 auto-sensing power supply works on both 120VAC and 240VAC and 277VAC, suit for Large Rooms and Commercial Setups
  • HIGH-EFFICIENCY FULL SPECTRUM LED GROW: NEWEST SMD LED technology provides highest PAR/LUMEN output(1122umol@18"), make you get 30% higher yield to compare OLD HPS/CMH led lights; 3000K 5000K and IR 660nm 760nm RED, infinite close to natural light, highly engineered to provide improved growing performance for plants all stages growing, rapid plant response from seed to flower
  • WORRY-FREE PURCHASE Mars Hydro products come with 60 months US local warranty, 30 days money-back guarantee, and professional after-sale customer service. Make sure to purchase authorized products of Mars Hydro other than many imitations of our products. If any questions about the products, please feel free to contact us, we will reply within 24 hours.


  • Full spectrum growth lights
  • Reliable dimmer switch
  • Efficiently uses electricity
  • Includes semiconductors in kit
  • Generous size


  • Users can’t look at lights
  • Electronics are difficult to configure

Can I Use the Same Light for Both?

You can use the same light for both colonization and fruiting if your light is dimmable and is designed to change colors somewhat. Most of the higher-end growth lights include the ability to swap out semiconductor chips, which allow you to get a different color spectrum.

Fruiting usually requires light that’s shifted more toward the infrared end of the spectrum, so you may want to put in chips that put out more light in this area before switching to ones that offer more visible light over time. It’s usually much less expensive to buy multiple LEDs than to actually purchase multiple mushroom growth light kits.

On the other hand, you might find that you can use the same light for both chores merely by setting the dimmer switch a bit differently. Lower-end models might start to flicker if you do this, so it’s important to work with a high-quality system that can hold up to this kind of usage.