Lighting for Succulents

A sunburned succulent displaying white and brown spots on the leaves.   Photo Source:  The Succulent Project

A sunburned succulent displaying white and brown spots on the leaves.

Photo Source: The Succulent Project

A leggy succulent from too little sunlight.   Photo Source:  Elisha Blaha

A leggy succulent from too little sunlight.

Photo Source: Elisha Blaha

A healthy, plump, happy succulent.   Photo Source:  Mountain Crest

A healthy, plump, happy succulent.

Photo Source: Mountain Crest

We discussed proper watering on the last blog post. Today, lets focus on another important factor in growing healthy, happy succulents…

Lighting!

I’m sure you have heard that succulents love light, and they do, very few survive in shade. However, succulents also need protection from harsh light. They can get sunburned! Looks like I have a few things in common with succulents too ;)

So what type of lighting should we keep our beloved plump plants in? A bright sunny window that gets about 6 hours of sunlight will work great. Succulents will survive in less light but their growth will stunt and they will become extremely leggy. I recommend a West or South facing window. Beware of South windows on hot summer days, they can cause your succulent to burn!

My succulent is becoming leggy

Don’t worry if your succulent has started to stretch out. It’s an easy fix. Just move to a sunnier spot. If you don’t like how leggy it is, cut the top off (from where it began to stretch out of the succulent rosette) and propagate it. I will discuss this more next blog!

My Succulents are sunburned

If you see white, powdery looking spots on your succulent leaves it is a sign it is getting too much direct sunlight. Unfortunately, sunburned leaves can not be reversed. To protect your succulent move it to an area that receives less harsh direct light. If you’re in Denver, Colorado like myself you know that summer days can get some pretty intense heat. To protect your succulents on these days I would suggest moving them farther away from a direct window to an area with sunny shade.

So have fun and enjoy watching your succulent transform. They can blush and change all sorts of colors with the correct lighting.

A succulent that appears “leggy” from too little sun.   Photo Source:  Succulent and Sunshine

A succulent that appears “leggy” from too little sun.

Photo Source: Succulent and Sunshine

Succulents appearing powdery white white spots form too much sun exposure.   Photo Source:  Succulent and Sunshine

Succulents appearing powdery white white spots form too much sun exposure.

Photo Source: Succulent and Sunshine