How to Assess Lighting for Plants

This week, for Plant Tip Tuesday...

There is no doubt about it…Plants LOVE light!!  

We are going to tell you about a quick and easy way to measure the light levels in your home.

As we all learned in grade 4 science, plants have a process called photosynthesis where they use light energy to produce organic compounds to make food for themselves.

We here at Bill’s always say that you can’t really go wrong with a bright filtered light location for most species of indoor tropical foliage plants.  And then we get asked, "what’s bright filtered light"? 

Bright filtered is natural sunlight that is diffused, possibly by outdoor trees, shier curtains or areas that are a couple feet away from a window that is getting direct sunlight for most of the day.

Here is a quick and easy test to measure your light is:

  • Make sure it is the brightest part of the day which is between Noon and 2pm.
  • Place a blank piece of white paper where you want to place your plant.
  • Put your hand a couple of inches away from the paper
    • If you can see a clearly defined shadow, the spot receives Bright Light.
    • If the shadow is fuzzy, but you can still tell that it is a shadow of a hand, the spot receives Bright Filtered Light.
    • If you see only a faint shadow and you really can’t make out the different fingers, that location receives Lower Light.

There are certainly species of plants that would prefer direct sunlight as well as plants that tolerate low light - stay tuned for in depth examples!