Know the Right Light for your Plants

Give your plant the right amount of sunlight it requires for its long term health and sustenance.
  • How plants are affected by too little or too much light?
  • How to select the perfect spot for your plant?
  • Ways for increasing light levels for plants
Plants require energy in order to grow, bloom and produce seed. Without adequate light, carbohydrates cannot be produced, the energy reserves are depleted and plants die.
Providing your plant with the amount of light it needs is vital for its long-term health. Let us first understand how too little or too much light can have anadverse impact on plant’s growth.

How plants get affected by too little or too much light?

  • When plants lack light, they do not produce chlorophyll, and plants can turn pale green to yellow to white.
  • Plant stems become “leggy,” meaning stems become long and thin and appear to be reaching toward the source of light.
  • A lack of sufficient light causes the plant to grow long spaces on stems between the leaf nodes.
  • Plants without more light may also drop their leaves, especially older leaves.
  • Flowering plants may fail to produce flower buds.
  • Plants exposed to too much light may result in burned and bleached leaves.
In short, Sun supplies plants with energy – too little may inhibit their ability to flower, while too much light can scorch the leaves or lead to wilting, so assess the light levels in your home to find suitable placements for your plants.

How to select the perfect spot for your plant?

As gardeners, there is a lot to know when caring for our plants. We have been told the key to success is the right plant at the right place.
Whether you live in a bright house with windows on all sides or a flat that receives little or no direct sunlight, there is a range of plants to suit the condition of your home. Remember to take into account neighbouring buildings or trees that may cast additional shade throughout the day, and keep in mind that light levels may fluctuate over the course of the year, depending on the season. Let us understand the light levels you have in your living space:
  • Filtered Sun: It describes the light close to a window that receives sun for about half of the day. It may also be the level of light in a sunny room behind a window curtain. It is the correct level for the plants that need a bright light, but not in the full blare of direct sun all day. It is light that is diffused between the plant and the light source.
  • Light shade: It is the light level a bit away from a window in a room that receives sun for about half the day. It can also be in front of a window that receives no direct sunlight or in the corners of a sunny room.
  • Shade: These are the areas where the windows receive no direct sun or limited hours of sunlight. The choice of plants that thrive in shade is restricted, but there are few that will survive including some ferns.
  • Sun: The brightest light type, can be found in front of a window that gets over 12 hours of direct sunlight each day. Not many plants can survive with this intense light, especially in summer, although some like this position in winter when light is weaker.
Alternately, light conditions can also be explained by the following terms which have been used to describe the needs of various plants as given in our website (
  • Full Sun: Area that receives 5 or more hours of direct sunlight daily. It is the brightest category of light for plants.
  • Semi Sun: Area that receive only couple of hours of direct sunlight in winter. Balance time it receives indirect or reflected light.
  • Semi Shade: Area that mostly receives good, bright, indirect light without any direct sun.
  • Shade: Area that receives no direct sunlight; is mostly a bit dark even during afternoon.

Ways for increasing light levels for plants

a) Regular cleaning of leaves

This will increase the amount of light that reaches your plant. On a weekly basis, use a soft, damp cloth to remove dust and while performing this task, take care not to damage the leaves.

b) Rotate your plants

Rotate them by 90 degrees every few days so that each side receives sufficient sun and grows evenly, no matter what light levels your living space receives. This will prevent the plant from becoming ill-shaped over time.

c) Pay attention to light variations

Take note of light variations between seasons. In some countries, sunlight is stronger in summer and weaker in winter. In these areas, plants that like the filtered sun may need to be kept closer to a sunny window in winter. Always take care not to leave them trapped behind curtains in a cold weather, as the extreme drop in temperature could cause them harm.

d) Boost up low light conditions

Light conditions can be improved in your living space using artificial lights which imitate the sun’s rays. There are special lights that mimic the sun and provide energy to plants! They are called grow lights, or plant lights.There is a range of easy –to-install units suitable for home gardening. But always take the supplier’s advice before buying, as some may emit too much or too little light for the plants you wish to grow.

e) Put them closer to a window or Door

Almost all plants would love to live within a couple of feet off a window or door. Even low-light plants will derive comfort from this amount of light. Try to keep them closer to a window or door except a few like shade-loving plants. Additionally, a south-facing window provides the best light for sun-loving indoor plants. If you do not have a south-facing window, a window with a western exposure is the next good option.

f) Sunlight Bouncing Back

A location where light reflects back at the plant significantly increases the amount of available light. Outdoors, locate plants near a light-coloured building, but be careful if you live in a hot & sunny climate. The reflected heat may be powerful enough to damage the plant. You can take advantage of reflected light indoors as well. While dark surfaces reduce the intensity of available sunlight, light surfaces increase the intensity by reflecting it back to the plant. Place the plant near a light-coloured wall, where it reflects light to the plant.

g) Place mirrors

Mirrors help increase light for plants in two ways: reflection and redirection. Suppose your indoor plant needs full sun, but you do not have a bright area in the house for it. That doesn’t mean you are limited to plants that like shade. You will need a mirror to reflect more light onto the sun-loving plant. Strategically placed mirrors can redirect light from a window into that corner.


Being a plant parent always remember, light is energy for plants. Make sure you understand how much sunlight your plant needs and how much light your space can provide before making your plant selections. Our objective behind writing this content was tomake you aware the importance of choosing the perfect spot for plant.

Reference links used:
1. – How to Grow Fresh Air (B.C.Wolverton)
2. – Practical Houseplant Book (RHS, Fran Bailey &Zia Allaway)

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Know Your Home Air

Gas heating systems, leaking chimneys, fire places emits carbon monoxide, nitrogen dioxide and other harmful pollutants. Plastics and common household cleaners, paints, paint thinner often placed under the kitchen sink, release Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs), when used and stored. Overheating of non-stick cookware releases toxic fumes. Pesticides we use in and around the home also release various chemical and semi-volatile compounds.


Harmful effects
Carbon monoxide causes headache, dizziness and fatigue. These often cause eye, nose, and throat irritation, nausea, and can also damage the liver, kidney, and central nervous system. Fine particles are produced during all kinds of combustion which lead to acute and chronic effects to respiratory and cardiovascular systems.

Pet dander and hair, carpet, rugs, upholstery furniture are main source of dust mites, fungus, and bacteria. A dirty filter of air conditioners acts as a reservoir for dirt, dust and other airborne contaminants that are continuously circulated back into your breathing air. Secondhand smoke from cigarettes, other tobacco products and mosquito coil emits VOC’s and formaldehyde and various particulate matters. CO2 released from our lungs is exhaled in the air which pollutes the air if the place is too crowded or there is less ventilation.


Harmful effects
All these can trigger coughing, nosebleeds, shortness of breath, dry mouth, vomiting,
digestive tract problems, depression, allergy and asthma attacks, and other respiratory illness.

Shower, faucets and other water sources are main cause of humidity and mold. Bathroom cleaners and personal care products like toothpaste, soaps, facial tissues, detergent, fabric softeners, air fresheners, deodorizers, hair sprays, disinfectants, are full of VOC’s and chemicals which emits harmful pollutants.


Harmful effects
Mold can cause allergic reactions, asthma and other respiratory ailments. VOC’s and toxic chemicals released in the bathroom can causes eye, nose, and throat irritation, nausea and respiratory problems. All these products release harmful pollutants while they are used also when they are stored.

A bedroom contains many sources of indoor air pollution. Mattress, pillow and blankets, soft toys, are the reservoirs of dust mites, fungi and bacteria. Furniture, carpets, paints and beauty product like hairspray, nail polishes, perfumes, deodorants etc off gas VOC, formaldehyde and toxic gases into the air.


Harmful effects
These pollutants make the air unhealthy which leads to allergy, asthma attacks, dizziness, headache, fatigue and other respiratory ailments.

Second-hand smoke
Second hand Smoke is a mixture of the smoke given off by the burning of tobacco products, such as cigarettes, cigars or pipes and the smoke exhaled by smokers. Secondhand smoke is also called environmental tobacco smoke (ETS). Passive smoking can lead to coughing, excess phlegm, and chest discomfort. NCI (National Cancer Institute) also notes that spontaneous abortion (miscarriage), cervical cancer, sudden infant death syndrome, low birth weight, nasal sinus cancer, decreased lung function, exacerbation of cystic fibrosis, and negative cognitive and behavioral effects in children have been linked to ETS. Secondhand smoke exposure commonly occurs indoors, particularly in homes and cars. Secondhand smoke can move between rooms of a home and between apartment units.

Guest Bathroom

Central heating and cooling systems and humidification devices
The air filter in your HVAC system is the front line of defense against poor indoor air quality. A typical central heating and cooling system circulates over 1,000 cubic feet per minute of air through the filter. This means the entire air volume in your house passes through the filter multiple times every day. A dirty filter, however, can actually make indoor air quality worse by acting as a reservoir for dirt, dust and other airborne contaminants that are continuously circulated back into your breathing air. In addition to driving up your utility bill, a clogged air filter will allow all that dust and debris that should be filtered out to be re-circulated back into your home. This can cause chronic allergies and especially be dangerous for people with asthma or other respiratory conditions.

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