The Importance Of Sunlight For Your Plants

You have probably heard that the secret to keeping plants alive is sunlight, but is that necessarily true? 

Here we will give you some better insight of how indoor plants utilize sunlight and how you can prevent sunburn and other common problems associated with the sun!

It’s a given that plants need sunlight to thrive, but there’s relatively little information about how much sunlight is too much and what is too little! Leaving all of those beginner (and even advanced) plant enthusiasts to wonder if their plant is suffering from overheating due to excess light or sun! Let's go over the ways plants use light energy and how to tell if they’re getting more light than they can reasonably use. 

How plants use light energy:

We all remember learning photosynthesis in elementary school and have a general understanding of how it works, but most people aren’t aware of how plants utilize the energy they create. For example, Leaves absorb energy from the sun or light to create a sugar called glucose and proteins to nourish themselves and are used to create cell walls. 

How plants respond to too much light:

When they absorb more light than they can use, that excess can cause damage. To protect themselves, they convert all of that excess energy into heat and send it back out through transpiration. Under most conditions, they send back around 70% of all the light energy they absorb. Rapid reduction in light absorption plays a minor role in the challenge of coping with excess light. 


Signs of too much light:

Most plants will exhibit several signs of too much light. The most apparent sign will be leaf burning. This typically causes the yellowing of leaves towards the top of the plant but the veins of the plant stay green, and the leaves usually take on a yellow or brown “burnt” look. This is also commonly mistaken for a nitrogen deficiency, but nitrogen deficient leaves typically fall off, while light-burned leaves won’t fall off and can’t easily be picked off. 

If your plants are grown indoors simply move the light source or the plant to provide more distance and shorten how long the lights remain on. Of course outdoor settings provide more obstacles when trying to control how much sun and light plants get, but using shade to the best of your ability to provide some relief, especially during midday is helpful and can be very beneficial to your plants! 

After reading this, I hope you now understand the importance of sunlight. You may be wondering "are my plants getting enough sun?" If your plants are showing signs that they could be getting too little or too much sun, try moving them to a new spot to see how they adjust. So what do you think? Are any of your plants getting too little or too much sun? 

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