Light directly influences plant growth and flowering by inducing photosynthesis and feeding plants energy. Plants are dependent on light to generate food, induce the growing cycle and allow for healthy development.
Even though all plants require light, not all require the same amount of light. Generally, the more light a plant gets, the more food it can make. When a plant gets less light than it needs, the food reserves are used up and the plant’s health declines. Your success with plants will depend largely on choosing the right plants that will grow in the amount of light you have in your home.
Here is a list of the most popular house plants and their light requirements:
High-light houseplants require bright indirect sun exposure for most of the day (6+ hours). South and west-facing windows will get the largest amount of bright light.
Some of these include:
- Fiddle Leaf Fig
- Most varieties of palm trees
- Norfolk Island Pine
- Boston Fern
- Ponytail Palm,
Most of these plants can withstand a lot of indirect sunlight, but be sure to keep an eye out for sunburn on the tips of their leaves until you fine-tune your placement.
Most medium-light houseplants can survive in some direct sunlight, but they far prefer their light to be indirect. There are three types of indirect sunlight you may find in your home:
- Filtered sunlight is direct sunlight that fills the room most of the day, but is filtered by curtains, blinds, an awning, or even trees right outside the window. You can also create filtered light by placing your plant further from the window.
- Indirect sunlight is when your plant is in a shady area within an area that receives bright sunlight. It may be behind another plant or a piece of furniture.
- Partial sunlight is when the light is direct only during certain times of the day, such as in the morning or late afternoon. This is common in east-facing windows that receive a few hours of morning light, followed by a few hours of indirect afternoon sun.
Popular medium-light houseplants include:
- Pothos (Marble queen, jade, golden etc.)
- Most Dracaena
- Majesty Palm
- Peperomia Hope,
- Pilea Peperomioides,
- Calathea Rattlesnake,
- Syngonium White Butterfly,
Low-light houseplants don’t require much light. You’ll typically find low light in rooms with few windows or windows where the blinds are often kept down/closed (like bathrooms) or North facing windows
These plants are perfect for brightening up small rooms and drab corners. Some of these include:
- Peace Lily
- Janet Craig Dracaena
- ZZ Plant
- Sansevieria Laurentii,
- Spider Plant,
- Chinese Evergreen
- Dumb Cane (Dieffenbachia)
How do you know if your plants are getting too much/ not enough sun?
- Flowers not blooming
- Weak, slow and spindly growth.
- Yellowing leaves which eventually fall.
- New leaves remain smaller than usual.
- Flowers shrivel up and die quickly.
- Leaves shriveling up and drying.
- Leaves fade in color.
- Drooping leaves.