Depending on the type, succulents need six hours of sunlight each day because they are light-loving plants. You might need to gradually expose newly planted succulents to full sun exposure or give shade with a translucent screen because they can burn in direct sunshine.
Can succulents live in the absence of sunlight?
The most light is reflected from south-facing windows throughout the day in the northern hemisphere. The sun shines through windows facing east in the morning and west in the afternoon and evening. The least quantity of sunlight enters windows that face north.
A south-facing window is the best choice for the majority of sun-loving succulent plants in the northern hemisphere. However, all of the low-light succulents covered in this article happily flourish in windows that face west or east. Even in a dark, north-facing window, some of them will make it, but I don’t advise it because even there, they won’t thrive.
However, no succulent can live in a completely dark environment. Therefore, even if your succulent plants are varieties that thrive in low light, think about buying a tiny desktop grow light if you live in a basement flat, have only a north-facing window, or if your space has no windows at all. When a modest grow lamp is placed over low light succulents for 6 to 8 hours a day, you’ll be astounded at how well they grow. You won’t need to remember to turn the lights on and off every day if you have a reliable timer.
Now that you are aware of how much sunlight low light succulents require, allow me to introduce you to some of the greatest low light succulents.
Do succulents tolerate shade?
Succulents like burro’s tail or string of pearls hanging in planters beneath a covered patio or porch are unusual to observe. Even though these types typically only receive filtered light, they will nevertheless thrive. Succulents that can tolerate shade do occur, albeit they are uncommon. There are a few species that are larger, but the majority of them are smaller.
Building a bridge between two worlds is necessary to create a succulent shade garden. Most of our common succulents require all day sun to avoid becoming leggy and not blooming. Ideally, plants in shade should receive at least six hours a day of dappled light. The benefit of low light is that plants that cannot withstand intense sunshine can rest during the warmest portion of the day. In addition to protecting the plant’s color, this will assist avoid scald.
Succulents that grow in the shadow outside will use less water, making them ideal xeriscape plants.
Can succulents thrive in artificial light indoors?
I don’t have much experience growing succulents in cold temperatures and dark winters because I live in sunny Southern California. I’m fortunate enough to be able to leave my plants outside all year long without significant frost or low light harm. I am aware that many of you reside all over the world and are unsure of what to do with your plants now that you have brought them indoors for the winter. Perhaps despite the fact that you have your plants on window sills, they are still growing languidly, or perhaps the winters in your area are completely dark. Look nowhere else! I’m very happy to have indoor plant growing specialist Ben Thorton here with us today to share his knowledge about using grow lights to support the growth of your lovely garden regardless of the lighting situation!
Succulents have recently risen to the top of the list of preferred indoor plants because of how attractive they are, how they enhance the atmosphere of your home, and how little maintenance and water they need compared to other indoor plants. Many people are reluctant to grow succulents in regions with short summers because they are warm-weather and sun-loving plants. You might be shocked to learn that even if you live in a climate with distinct seasons and chilly, gloomy winter months, you can still grow succulents all year round. Once the weather becomes cooler, just move the succulents inside and provide the artificial lighting they require. Here is a simple tutorial on growing succulents indoors and under artificial lights if you are unsure about using grow lights or worried that you might harm your plants by using them.
Artificial lighting can be categorized as either lighting used in addition to natural lighting or lighting utilized to perfectly mimic sunlight in situations where none actually exists. Since vitamin D, one of the most important vitamins in the human body, is obtained from sunlight, artificial light cannot replace it for humans. In contrast to other living things, plants just require the light itself from the sun. Photosynthesis is a process that takes place when plants are exposed to light and provides them with the energy they require to grow. Succulents can be grown indoors under artificial light just as well as outdoors in natural sunshine, provided that the right amount of light is provided. To successfully grow your succulents in your house, you will need to select the best lights and understand a few basic lighting techniques.
There are a few considerations to keep in mind when selecting artificial lighting for an indoor garden. And they are as follows:
How strong and bright is the light produced by the grow lights?
The brightness of the light produced by grow lights is the most important factor to consider because it will affect how much light the plants receive and how well they can grow. You need lights for succulents that produce at least 2,000 lumens per square foot of illumination. 10,000 lumens per square foot are produced by noontime direct sunlight, but if you run 2,000 or more lumen lamps for 14 or more hours a day, the plants will receive almost the same amount of light as they would in the height of summer.
What is the light’s wattage?
Another item to consider is the wattage of the grow lights you buy, as this will have an impact on your electricity bill. You pay more for electricity the more watts a light uses, therefore you don’t want to choose a light that is brilliant but uses a lot of watts because that will be very expensive. To get the best of both worlds—bright light for your plants and minimal electricity consumption for you—look for lights that are marked as energy efficient. These lights will likely have a high lumen count and low wattage, giving you the best of both worlds.
What color temperature range does the light produced by grow lights fall into?
Because succulents love the sun and prefer bright light to shadow, they also need a particular light with regard to the color temperature of the light. The visible color that the grow lights emit is essentially their color temperature. Kelvins are used to measure this. To provide the light that plants require to thrive, light must fall within a certain range of color temperatures. Starting at roughly 5,000 Kelvins, the ideal color temperature for succulents will provide your succulents cool, full-spectrum light that closely resembles sunlight.
How much heat is emitted by the light?
Finally, it is crucial to understand how much heat the grow lights emit. If they produce a lot of heat, you can experience a problem with the temperature in the space where you grow your succulents, which would require you to invest extra money in a reliable ventilation or cooling system. Additionally, if lights produce a lot of heat, you will need to situate your plants farther away from the lights in order to prevent them from burning them. Your plants may not receive enough light as a result. Some typical grow lights are known to emit a lot of heat, while others remain cool to the touch even after being on for 24 hours. Make sure a grow light doesn’t produce too much heat before you buy one.
I would advise you to purchase T5 grow lights since they have all the qualities of a good grow light and I have experience working with many various types of grow lights. Their diameter is 5 eights of an inch. T5 grow lights are available in a variety of configurations, including two different lengths (2 ft and 4 ft bulbs), numerous different bulb counts (from 1 to 12 bulbs in one fixture), various efficiency types (Normal Output (NO), High Output (HO), and Very High Output (VHO), and various color temperature varieties (from only 2,900 Kelvins up to 10,000 Kelvins). I typically use high output (HO) bulbs because a 2 foot HO T5 bulb uses just 24 watts and produces 2,000 lumens, compared to a 4 foot long high output (HO) T5 bulb that uses 54 watts and produces 5,000 lumens. You obtain incredibly effective light that is ideal for succulents if you mix one or the other length bulbs in a group of two or more bulbs and choose bulbs that are in the color temperature of 6,500 Kelvins.
Although choosing the correct artificial light is an important aspect of effectively growing your plants in an indoor garden, there are a few other factors you should be aware of in order to do even better.
Be aware of the height at which you should hang your plant canopy’ grow lights.
Knowing how high to hang your grow lights is essential since it affects how much light the plants receive. You must hang grow lights so that they may provide the maximum amount of light to the plants without overheating them by radiating heat, regardless of whether you select T5 fixtures or select other grow lights. In order to reduce the risk of your grow lights burning and harming your plants, I would first advise placing any grow light at least 6 to 8 inches away from the tops of your succulents. You can later move your lighting fixtures closer to the succulents if you discover that they don’t emit heat and are cold to the touch (like T5 grow lights).
Determine the light cycle
Because there won’t be a sun to determine when plants receive light, you must determine the plants’ light cycle while growing plants indoors under grow lights. Knowing your light cycles will help you grow your succulents more quickly. Indoor gardens use light cycles to replicate day and night circumstances. Succulents will also develop more quickly if you give them more light, which is a common rule of thumb for growing any plants under lights. If you’re overwintering the plants, I’d recommend starting with a 20/4 light cycle for the succulents. This means leaving the lights on for 20 hours a day, turning them off for 4 hours, and then gradually extending the darkness time until the light cycle is 16/8 (light/dark). Succulents require knowledge of the winter solstice so they can begin their dormant period. If you use grow lights all year for your succulents, you may set the light cycle to 24/0 or 20/4 in the summer to help them develop swiftly and flourish.
Learn how frequently to water your succulents.
Finally, it should be noted that watering is equally crucial because both inadequate and excessive watering might harm your plants. Even if you’re using grow lights to simulate summer, you still need to water the succulents during the summer by watering them once the soil is dry. Even if succulents are cultivated indoors, things change over the winter. Succulents use substantially less water while they are dormant throughout the winter or an imitation of winter since they are either growing very slowly or not at all. So, how frequently should you water succulents in the winter? In general, I’d advise watering them every two weeks, but if the room is hot, you’ll need to water them more frequently because the heat will cause them to dry out more quickly. Looking at the soil in which succulents are growing will tell you how frequently they need watering during the winter. Allow the soil to dry up completely before giving succulents approximately a week to absorb the water before you water them again to prevent overwatering.
January 2017 addition:
Is it possible to keep a succulent in a room without windows?
Succulents are easily grown plants that are commonly available and suitable for apartment living. They don’t need a lot of light or attention, and the majority of kinds don’t take up much room.
“According to Nancy Silverman, president and owner of Plantscaping, succulents are the trendiest and most sought-after plants for interior gardening.
Succulents have thick, often angular, and geometrically shaped leaves. The succulent family, which includes cactus plants, is characterized by their spherical form and spine-covered exterior.
According to Silverman, succulents are very orderly, crisp, tidy, and fitted plants.
Their silhouettes seem lovely.
“According to Chris Murray, manager of perennials and annual plants at Gali’s Florist and Garden Center, growing any of the succulents and cacti is simple.
Native to arid areas with high daytime temperatures and low nighttime temperatures, “Succulents and cacti can withstand colder temperatures than most people realize, he added. They thrive in a wide variety of temperatures, from 55 to 85 degrees.
Cactus and succulents “are extremely resilient to low light. He said that they can survive without being close to a window. In fact, certain succulents may thrive in inside spaces devoid of windows or other sources of natural light.
“Succulents shouldn’t be placed next to glass that magnifies sunlight, on a radiator, or near a heater. Too close window placement might cause plants to burn in the sun.
In porous clay pots that can breathe, succulents thrive “According to Murray, succulents and cacti look good in clay pots and are popular with most people. Ceramic pots with glaze are also suitable for these plants.
Succulents are typically sold in plastic containers and can be found in florist shops, garden centers, grocery stores, and online.
“He suggested the plants may stay in the plastic planter they came in for around a year.”
They do not immediately require a larger pot because they have such a little root system.
He advised mixing gravel and sand into the soil before planting succulents. This kind of soil mixture will quickly absorb water, which will collect in the saucer or tray underneath the container.” The key, he explained, is drainage.
If you plan to grow succulents in a container without a drainage hole, add an additional layer of gravel to the bottom so that excess water can collect there without getting to the roots.
The word “succulent” means “juicy plants,” and refers to the succulents’ fleshy leaves, stems, and shallow root systems that store water.
Succulents should not be overwatered as this can cause them to decay. Depending on the size of the pot and the amount of light they receive, Silverman advised watering them every two to four weeks “They require less water as the light level drops.
She suggested giving the plants a good soak before draining any extra water from the saucer.
Before watering them again, be sure they have used up all of their water. She advised feeling the soil’s surface and dipping your finger into the pot to gauge its moisture content. “You should never want the soil’s surface to feel wet. Succulents dislike being submerged in water.
She advised using a soil probe to detect whether the plant needs extra moisture for beginners who are just starting to grow succulents. A core of soil is brought up by the probe when it is introduced into the pot and pushed back up. It is not necessary to re-water the plant if the dirt at the bottom of the pot is still damp.
Murray noted that succulents do not require heavy feeding. In the winter, they shouldn’t be fed at all.
He advised using the all-purpose plant food Jack’s Classic. He advised applying fertilizer only during the summer and diluting it by one-fourth each time you water the plants.
Several succulents were suggested for apartment growth by Murray and Silverman. Be aware that there are numerous variants of each of these plants.
Agaves can reach a height of eight to ten inches and have enormous, stiff rosettes of long, pointed leaves.
Aloes are the most often used succulents, according to Murray. Depending on the kind, their surface can range from being smooth to being spiky, and there are numerous color variations. Aloe plants are well known for their therapeutic benefits. Burns can be soothed and minor cuts can be helped to heal by applying the leaf gel.
“Cacti are popular with collectors, according to Silverman. They are used with caution in installations in plantscaping since they can be harmful to children and animals.” You risk contracting an illness if you slam your hand into a thorny cactus.
Identifying this time-honored favorite “Silverman called it a beautiful plant and noted its propensity to blossom again. “Because the blooms begin around Thanksgiving, the cactus should be given a new name. Root stems in water to propagate them, and then pot them in a tiny clay pot.
Echeverias are a constantly well-liked outdoor garden plant that resemble hens and chicks. The outer leaves expand in size relative to the inner ones. Silver to dark bronze are possible for the foliage. One kind of echeveria, called Pearl Echeveria, has elegant flower stalks that rise from the base of the plant and are topped with blossoms of various hues. Clip an offshoot to use as seed, then let it sit for a day or two to develop a callus before planting it.
The jade plant has thick, maroon-tinged, glossy green foliage. Around Christmas, mature plants will blossom with star-shaped flowers. Jade Plants need to be manicured, Silverman noted. The stems will snap if they are allowed to grow without being pruned. Any plant that is pruned will force new growth. Cut the stems off and let them sit out for a day or two till the ends die to propagate. After that, plant them in sandy soil and water them sparingly until they take root.
Mother-in-Tongue Law’s is a two to three foot tall plant that prefers a sunny location and needs minimal water. Rhizomes can be divided, or it can be reproduced by taking leaf cuttings.
According to Silverman, Superba, a shorter variant of Mother-in-Tongue, Law’s has leaves with black and gold stripes and leaves with black and yellow stripes.
According to Silverman, this plant thrives in apartments and has extremely glossy green leaves. “Its silhouette is gorgeous. Depending on the size of the pot, she advised watering the ZZ Plant every two to four weeks. Depending on the amount of area that is available, these plants can grow quite small or pretty enormous.
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