Anthurium Light Requirements: A Complete Guide

Beautiful Blooms in Anthurium Plant
Beautiful Blooms in Anthurium Plant (Source: Pixabay)

Did you know Anthurium (an·thaw·ree·uhm) symbolizes hospitality?

Anthurium has more than 1000 varieties with beautiful fragrances and can brighten up any space.

It is a tropical plant that gets sunlight behind the shades of the tree in its natural habitat. 

Generally, Anthurium requires 8 to 10 hours of indirect medium to bright light daily. However, in case of inadequate sunlight, 7 to 8 hours of grow light can also help them grow. Moreover, placing Anthurium near an east or west-facing window is ideal.

Anthurium salgarense in pot
Anthurium salgarense in pot (Source: Reddit)

If you plan to own this plant, you may have considered where to place it based on its light requirements.

Anthurium can face severe problems if it does not get proper light, leading to its slow growth.

Keep reading to find the lighting requirements for your Anthurium.

Overview of Anthurium

Anthurium is famous for its beautiful flower as well as ornamental leaves.

The flower has bright red, green, and white colors, making it a popular centerpiece during Christmas.

Anthurium Plant
Anthurium Plant With Beautiful Flowers (Source: Bunches)

However, North Carolina State University has mentioned that Anthurium is toxic to both human beings and pets when consumed.

The consumption of Anthurium can cause severe pain in the mouth, dermatitis, ingestion, and eye irritation.

Moreover, here is the overview of Anthurium.

Indicator Identity
Common NameAnthurium, tailflower, flamingo flower, laceleaf
Botanical NameAnthurium spp.
FamilyAraceae
NativeCentral America, Northern South America, and the Caribbean.
Plant TypeHerbaceous perennial
Mature Size12-18 inches
Bloom TimeAll year around
USDA zone11 to 12
Flower ColorRed, pink, white with a contrasting spadix
Flower TypeHeart shaped waxy spathes with tail-like spikes
Temperature60 to 90°F
Humidity60 to 70%
WateringWater when the top 2 inches of the soil is dry
Soil pH5.5 to 6.5 (acidic)
Soil TypeCoarse, moist potting mix
ToxicityToxic to both humans and pets

How Much Light does Anthurium Need?

Anthuriums are indoor houseplants that must be kept in a shaded area because prolonged exposure to harsh sunlight outside can kill them.

Anthurium prefers 8 to 10 hours of bright indirect sunlight. Moreover, placing them in an east-facing window is ideal for their optimum growth.

Similarly, they can only tolerate one to two hours of direct morning sunlight.

Sunlight-and-location-of-the-plant
Bright Indirect Light (Youtube)

If you do not expect the Anthurium to bloom, it can thrive in low-light conditions.

If you keep them outdoors make sure you are keeping them in shaded area where it does not get direct harsh sunlight.

The harsh sunlight can scorch them and cause the leaves to turn yellow or bleached and brown at the tips.

When growing Anthuriums outdoors, it is best to grow them in a pot so you can move inside, as they are sensitive to the cold and need steady temperatures.

Anthurium black beauty
Anthurium Black Beauty (Source: Thursd)

Additionally, you can also grow them under artificial light during winter.

It can survive for a while without the light with minimal growth, but it will eventually die.

How to Ensure Optimum Light for Anthurium?

Anthurium loves abundant indirect light. However, it needs to be optimum as excess or shortage of light can impact the growth and lifeline of Anthurium.

Dimensions of light
Dimensions of light (Source: Michigan State University)

You will know if your Anthurium is getting optimum light by looking at its leaves as it will start to show signs. 

Anthurium is a tropical plant, so you should try to provide them with similar conditions when growing them at home.

Let us look at the light requirements to ensure optimum light for Anthurium.

1. Light Intensity

As the growth rate of Anthurium is related to the light it gets, it is better to provide them with the necessary light to help them grow.

However, it does not mean you can place them in direct sunlight as it can damage their foliage.

For the best growth of Anthurium, provide them with a light intensity of at least 400 Foot Candles. At least 100 FC should be provided to Anthurium for its survival.

In the case of commercial Anthurium plantation, the light intensity of 1500-2000 FC (300-400 µmol) is ideal.

You can measure the light intensity using a light meter. You can hold it close to the leaves in the direction of the light source.

According to the research, Anthurium ‘Southern Blush’ grew and flowered best at a maximum light intensity of 2000 footcandles as compared to 1000 footcandles.

In Hawaii, studies with cut flower cultivars revealed that lower light levels resulted in longer flower peduncles and larger spathes, while higher light levels resulted in slightly increased flower production.

The study was based on the commercial plantation of Anthurium. 

Photosynthesis Graph
Relation Between Photosynthesis and Light Intensity (Source: Biology-IGCSE)

Therefore, you must find a good location that can provide similar light intensity during the day.

If your plant is getting too intense light, you can use a sheer curtain to protect them from sunburn.

See below to find different locations with different light intensities.

Light IntensityFootcandlesLight Exposure
Low-medium 25 - 400North-facing window
Medium-Bright500East-west facing window
Bright-High Light500 - 1000South-facing window
Direct SunlightOver 10004-6 hours of direct sunlight

2. Light Duration

Anthuriums naturally grow under a huge canopy of trees and receive 10 to 12 hours per day of filtered, indirect sunlight, depending on the season.

Therefore, to replicate this environment, you must put them close to a window sill or balcony where it receives the same number of hours of sunlight.

Anthuriums require 8 to 10 hours of bright to medium indirect sunlight to bloom beautifully in the summer.

The plant can withstand one to two hours of direct sunlight in the morning, but any longer can damage it.

hanging light bulbs with plants
Artificial Lighting for Plants (Source: Unsplash)

If you live in an area where your Anthurium cannot get 8 to 10 hours of indirect bright sunlight, you can provide it with artificial light.

Additionally, it must be exposed to the LEDs for at least 12 hours if it is in a dim, north-facing room.

If you have them outside, keep them indoors under a grow light because the harsh winter can affect them.

3. Light Quality

Sunlight has a wide variety of light intensities that affects the plant differently.

The light intensities received by Anthurium determine its growth and flowering.

Plants thrive in light with higher red and blue content and lower green and yellow content.

Numerous studies have revealed that plants benefit from a specific red and blue light ratio.

The wavelengths of red (625-740 nm), far-red (740-800 nm), and blue (430-500 nm) are the most significant for plant growth. Provide all three wavelengths for healthy Anthurium.

Color Temperature Chart
Color Temperature Chart (Source: Illumi)

The study was conducted on the effects of different light quality ratios on the growth of Anthurium andreanum (‘Pink Champion’ and ‘Alabama’) under low light conditions.

The study revealed that both plants produced wider leaves at blue light than red light.

The phenomenon demonstrated that red and blue light combined might be relatively good light quality to support Anthurium andreanum’s normal growth in a low-light environment.

In addition, like many indoor plants, Anthurium also favors color temperatures ranging from 4000 to 6000 kelvin.

Read our article on “What Light Color is Best for the Plant’s Growth?”

4. Location for the Plant

Anthurium is a tropical plant that grows in the shades of big trees in its natural habitat. Place your Anthurium where it gets plenty of indirect sunlight.

It is better to keep your Anthurium near the east or west-facing windows.

The eastern-facing windows will be protected from the intense light that arrives later in the day, but they will receive a good strong dose of light in the morning when the lower temperatures can help them withstand it.

Plants placed in bright and indirect lighting conditions near window
Plants Near Window Getting Indirect Light (Source: Unsplash)

Check the amount of light it is getting, as too much light will sunburn your leaves.

However, if you live in a south-facing apartment, do not be discouraged from owning one of these.

On the other hand, if the space is large enough, you can position the plant 4-6 feet away from south-facing windows.

You can also place a sheer curtain to ensure the right level of intensity is hitting your plant.

Signs your Anthurium Requires More or Less Light

Many think Anthurium is a shade-loving plant that can do good without proper light.

However, it requires adequate light to have proper growth. Likewise, providing Anthurium with too much light can damage the leaves due to sunburn.

It can survive in low light, but the growth will not be as bushy as a plant grown in proper light.

Providing your plant with less light can result in discoloration of leaves as the chlorophyll fails to make pigmentation.

Anthurium shows different signs of getting too little or too much sunlight. Let us look at the signs below.

Signs of Light Deprived Anthurium

Anthurium will show the following signs if it does not get the adequate light required.

  • The plant will be lean and leggy as Anthurium will produce less energy.
  • The soil will be wet as water usage will reduce as photosynthesis slows down.
  • The overall growth of  Anthurium will be slow, stunted, and never grow to its full potential.
Discolored brown roots are one of the symptoms observed with Rhizoctonia infections
Droopy and discolored Anthurium Due to Inadequate light (Source: D. Norman, UF/IFAS)
  • Anthurium may not bloom or will produce fewer blooms.
  • Lack of sunlight halts chlorophyll production leading to paler leaves.
  • Failure to provide light for a long time will also lead to dropping leaves and flowers.

Sign of Light Saturated Anthurium

Anthurium shows different signs when exposed to harsh sunlight for a long time. Some of them are listed below;

  • Brown spots appear on leaves and the leaves fade to a pale yellow.
  • Sunburn spot on the Anthurium leaves.
  • Plant cells begin to die, and the color of the leaves turns yellow, then brown.
Yellow and burnt leaves of Anthurium with brown spots
Yellow wilted leaves of Anthurium with brown spots (Source: Stocklib)
  • The leaves will curl from their source to protect them from too much light.
  • The soil will dry up quickly.
  • If your Anthurium is wilting mid-day, it is getting too much light.

Tips to Maintain Proper Light Condition for Anthurium

Here are some tips to maintain proper lighting condition for Anthurium.

  • Move your plant near the window if light is inadequate especially during the winter season.
  • Likewise, move the plant far from the window if it is getting too much light.
  • Rinse your plant’s leaves with a damp cloth once a week.
  • Rotate the plant to ensure the plant gets equal growth.
  • Please place them in the west or east-facing windows to see blooms.
  • Use sheer curtains if you placed them in the south-facing windows.

Does Anthurium Grow in Artificial Light?

You can place your Anthuriums under artificial light for 10 to 14 hours a day to promote their growth and blooming if you live in a location where it is not possible to get 8 to 10 hours of bright indirect sunlight.

Anthurium can grow adequately in artificial light when given the proper light intensity and spectrum to increase chlorophyll production.

plants under lights
Grow Lights for Plant (Source: Pexels)

However, do not substitute natural sunlight for artificial grow light as sunlight will always be the better option for the plant.

Try to provide the plant with indirect sunlight during summer, and use grow light during winter to provide them with better intensity.

Anthurium prefers LED grow light with minimum lumens of 400 placed 10 to 12 inches far from the plant.

If your Anthurium starts drooping, try moving the LED light closer to the plant.

The LED lights mimic the sunlight better than other lights, so place the Anthurium under grow light for 10 to 12 hours for their optimum growth.

Plant Grow Light with Stand
Plant Grow Light with Stand (Source: Amazon)

In addition, white paint or aluminum foil beneath or around the growing area helps reflect light and increases the effectiveness of artificial lighting.

Moreover, position your plants in a way to avoid shading one another.

Here are some best grow lights you can use for Anthurium.

Grow LightsFeatureProduct Image
GooingTop LED Grow Light6000K light needed for Anthurium growth

Flexible Gooseneck & strong clamp

Timer function of 4/8/12 hours
GooingTop LED Grow Light
LED Grow Light for Indoor Plants - Relassy 75WFull Spectrum between 380nm - 800nm

Improved Light Distribution
SANSI LED Grow Light with Ceramic Technology
Yuanhui YH2400 Led Grow LightProvides 3000K warm light color, 5000K daylight color

660nm increasing deep red color and 730nm far red diodes
Grow Light
Lxyoug LED Grow LightsProvides blue, red and white color temperature

Auto circular memory timing function
Lxyoug LED Grow Light

Conclusion

Anthurium is an exquisite tropical plant that will enlighten your space with its presence.

Try to provide your Anthurium with enough bright, indirect sunlight to keep it healthy and produce beautiful, vibrant blooms throughout its life span. 

Good luck with your Anthurium!

Read more to get more care instructions for different Anthurium varieties.

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