How Much Light Do Indoor Succulents Need

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.

Is there enough light inside for succulents?

Succulents grown indoors generally don’t require grow lights. Your succulents can thrive even in the winter without grow lights if your window receives direct sunlight throughout the day. However, because they frequently receive little sunshine throughout the winter, succulents frequently experience etiolation and fading color. Investing in a good grow light will help one avoid those problems.

How much light do indoor succulents require each day?

To survive, most succulents require direct sunshine. However, some low-light succulents can be placed farther away from the window than others.

A succulent needs six hours or more of sunshine each day. Either artificial or natural illumination can be used to accomplish this. In order to avoid scaring the plant, move your succulent from a darker section of your house to a windowsill gradually.

Being able to provide your succulent with the ideal quantity of light might be challenging when growing succulents indoors as opposed to outside.

Remember that some species of succulents may not tolerate hot conditions, therefore morning light may be preferable for more delicate varieties.

How are succulents maintained indoors?

Succulents may not need much attention, but they do need a few essentials to survive:

  • 1. Provide plenty sunlight. Succulents require adequate light—at least six hours each day of direct sunlight. Maintaining succulents outside can be quite simple. However, if you have a succulent indoors, you must keep it in direct sunlight near a window. A plant that is slanting toward the light is not receiving enough sunlight, yet a plant with burnt areas on its leaves is receiving too much direct sunshine.
  • 2. Use proper water. Depending on the season, succulents might have different water needs. Succulents should be irrigated if their soil dries completely during the growing season, but excess water should be avoided. When a succulent’s roots have time to dry out in between waterings, its lifespan is increased. In the chilly winter months, succulent plants go dormant and require less water. Only water your succulent as often as necessary because overwatering the soil is one of the main reasons of most development problems.
  • 3. Use the proper soil and pot combination. The appropriate container and potting soil can make all the difference, whether you’re growing your own succulents or purchasing one from a nursery. Your succulent planter needs to include a drainage hole if it is going to be an outdoor succulent. Proper drainage allows moisture to escape, allowing the soil and root systems to dry and prevent rot. Use well-draining soil instead of standard dirt if you have an indoor succulent. It is coarser than regular soil, enabling more air to pass through and encouraging evaporation rather than requiring to be drained. To increase aeration, perlite and pumice can be added to some potting mixtures.
  • 4.Remember to fertilize. The periodic fertilizing is beneficial for even low maintenance desert plants. To give your succulents a boost, use a diluted, water-soluble all-purpose fertilizer a couple times a year. Although it’s not entirely required, if you notice that your soil needs some help, add a little fertilizer.
  • 5. Examine your plant life. Pest hazards are more likely to affect a succulent indoors than outside. Make sure your plants are periodically checked for gnats or mealy pests. These insects are a sign that your plants are receiving too much water or fertilizer. Mealy bugs can lay hundreds of eggs and consume the plant juices that serve as their host, gradually harming your plant. Rubbish alcohol can be sprayed on your succulent’s leaves or soil to effectively kill mealy bugs and their eggs. Check the leaves and soil of the succulent before bringing it home from the nursery to make sure no bugs are present.

How much natural light does a succulent need?

Depending on the species, succulents require vastly different amounts of light. Others, like cacti and some desert plants, require many hours of bright, direct sunlight each day. Some succulents, like zz plants and snake plants, can survive in low light environments. Knowing what kind of succulent you have can help you determine how much light it needs.

Direct Light

Direct light occurs when the sun’s rays pass through the window and directly hit your plant. Direct-light succulents should be placed in front of a south or west-facing window, where they will ideally receive six to seven hours of sunlight each day (although this can vary depending on your variety). Desert cactus, echeveria, sempervivum, jade, aloe, aeonium, senecio, agave, sedum, hoya, and other succulents need direct sunlight.

Because it is still being filtered through a window, direct sunlight indoors is not as powerful as direct sunshine outside. This only really matters if you want to relocate your indoor succulents outdoors for any length of time, as the sudden change in sun exposure might damage your plant’s leaves. Make sure to gently transition the plants to outdoor direct sunshine by starting with largely indirect light for a few weeks.

Indirect Light

Before reaching the plant’s leaves, the sun’s rays must pass through a filter, thereby creating indirect light. Even if the light is indirect, the area is still very bright. Indirect light is ideal for many different succulent species, including the haworthia, holiday cacti, snake plants, zz plants, string of hearts, rhipsalis, gasteria, kalanchoe, and peperomia.

Low Light

Succulents come in many varieties, and many can endure low light. Here, the word “tolerate” makes a crucial distinction. Although some plants can survive or endure lower light levels, most plants thrive in strong, indirect light when planted inside. You could observe that low light-grown succulents grow more slowly or have a leggier appearance than those grown in indirect light. Low light typically refers to plants that are placed at least a few feet away from a window and that do not have direct sunlight or bright filtered light shining on their leaves. Snake plants, zz plants, kalanchoe, mistletoe cacti, string of hearts, holiday cacti, fishbone cacti, and other succulents can all withstand low light levels.

Succulents can they grow in artificial light?

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: