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Jade Plant Light Requirements you Should Know

Does your house or apartment lack windows, and are you wondering about the light requirements of Jade plants when growing indoors?

Generally, Jade plants require bright sunlight for 4-6 hours daily. Young Jade plants need bright indirect sunlight, whereas mature ones can tolerate more direct sunlight. In addition, southern windows are ideal for keeping Jade healthy.

It is hard to grow Jade plants in a windowless house, but there is a solution. Complete your thirst for queries regarding Jade plant light requirements!

Can Jade Plants Survive Without Sunlight?

Jade plants cannot survive without sunlight. But an alternative to this could be using artificial lighting sources to compensate for the natural sunlight.

Jade plants are among those plants that can be easily taken care of. But compromising Jade plant light requirements would not be ideal for its growth.

Jade Plants besides window
Jade plants flourish to their full growth under sunlight.

A little shade during the day would not cause any harm, but a complete absence of light or sunlight would cause this succulent plant to drop leaves.

Without sunlight or with less exposure to sunlight, the well-being of its leaves will deteriorate.

The plant would grow at an extremely slow pace. And their stem would become leggy consequently.

Signs your Jade Plant Suffer from Improper Light 

Read below to learn about the signs in your Jade plant that will tell you if the plant needs more light or less light.

Signs of Low or Insufficient Light 

Numerous factors indicate that a Jade plant is not receiving adequate light.

1. Stunted Growth: The plant, without enough sunlight, does not have enough energy to grow.

2. Leggy Growth: The stems of the Jade plant become thin and long. So, the Jade plant grows tall and has a straggly stem promoting leggy growth. 

3. Change of Color of the Leaves: The leaves turn yellow or brown. The change of color of the leaves happens mainly due to the lack of nutrients in the plant. But, this can also happen because of extreme exposure to intense and direct sunlight, which causes sunburn to the leaves of the Jade plant.

4. Leaves Pointing Towards the Light Source: If your Jade plant points towards the light source, it indicates that the plant is unhealthy and requires more sunlight.

5. Thin and Dropping Leaves: When a Jade plant is young, its foliage is thin, but as it matures, it becomes thick. The thick leaves turn into thin, floppy, and dropping ones.

6. Leaves Curling Down: Lack of sunlight causes the Jade plant’s leaves to curl down. The plant lacks nutrients with less exposure to sunlight, and the leaves start to curl.

Signs of Excessive Light

Below are some signs pointing towards a Jade plant getting too much light.

1. Development of Brown Spots 

Although Jade plants like to get direct sunlight throughout the day, exposure to intense sunlight for a long span might scorch the plant’s leaves.

This, in return, could cause the development of brown spots on the leaves of the plants.

The sunburn of the leaves causes the development of brown spots.

2. Red Leaves on the Edges

Jade plants develop red leaves, especially at the edges, in response to very bright light or other forms of stress.

When a plant is exposed to excessive light for an extended period, chlorophyll synthesis is lowered in favor of carotenoids, which assist in protecting the plant from harm.

The leaves get progressively yellow as a result of this.

The red coloring of leaves or tips indicates that the Jade plant is going through sun stress. The leaves may also feel softer than usual.
If you find your Jade plant turning purple, learn about causes to fix them!

How much Light does a Jade Plant Need?

Jade plants can be grown both indoors and outdoors if provided with proper lighting conditions at both places.

Young Jade Plant
This plant thrives in a spot with higher exposure to sunlight or light.

The higher light conditions, non-intense, that the plant receives are helpful in its growth.

1. Type of Light that Jade Plant Needs

The type of light needed depends upon the growth of the plant.

Bigger and mature Jade plants require direct sunlight (less intense if indoors), and young Jade plants require indirect lighting. 

Most of the time, indirect sunlight provided to established and bigger Jade plants are seen to be inadequate. This causes the leaves to face the source of the light.

Outdoor Light (Direct Sunlight)

A Jade plant benefits in outside atmospheres where they enjoy non-intense but direct exposure to sunlight.

Adequate air circulation also helps outdoor Jade plants avoid sunburn on their leaves.

Indoor light (Indirect Bright Sunlight)

The indoor Jade plant could be grown near a window with a Southern exposure where there would be nothing to block sunlight from entering.

As light levels are generally lower inside than outside, the Jade plant must be provided with higher light conditions by increasing its sun exposure gradually over time.

2. Light Intensity

Light intensity means how intense the sunlight is when you place a Jade plant for exposure to sunlight.

The best growth of Jade plants occurs above 750-foot candles.

In the case of artificial lighting, a 500 to 1,000-foot candle range would be suitable.

The light intensity can be maintained by adjusting the distance between a light source and the Jade plant.

A Jade plant can thrive in medium to high light-intensity conditions. So, they grow well indoors in well-lit areas.

Lets’s see the categorization for light intensity.

  • Bright Sunlight: (10,000–20,000 lux; 1,000–2,000 foot-candles)
  • Medium Sunlight: (2,500–10,000 lux; 250–1,000 foot-candles)
  • Low Sunlight: (500–2,500 lux, 50–250 foot-candles)
  • Very Low Sunlight: (<500 lux, <50 foot-candles)

Medium sunlight is best for Jade plants as bright sunlight may scorch your plant.

3. Light Duration

Generally, Jade plants prefer 4-6 hours of direct sunlight.

If you plan to place your Jade plant under direct sunlight, 5 hours would be more than enough for its proper growth.

However, this does not mean it won’t require lighting exposure for the remaining part of the day.

It will still require indirect sunlight throughout the day.

4. Direction of the Sun

The sun’s direction of the Jade plant is crucial in determining the best location for them, and knowing which way the home faces will aid in determining the best location for the Jade plant.

The light from south-facing windows lasts all day, which is great for your Jade plant.

Learn more about the amazing Jade plant benefits.

Methods to Check if your Jade Plant is Getting Enough Sunlight

In general, two methods are used to determine if your Jade plant is getting enough sunlight or light requirement. You can find them below.

1. Using a Lux Meter

  • Place a lux meter in front of where you have planted your Jade plant.
  • Wait until the lux meter measures the intensity of light.
  • If the value in the meter reading is above 8000 lux, then your Jade plant is getting adequate light.

2. Hand Shadow Test

  • Put a white sheet of paper in front of your Jade plant. 
  • Put your hand just above the paper aligned to the height of your Jade plant.
  • Fully spread your fingers.
  • Check the shadow cast on the white paper. 
  • If the shadow is barely visible, it points towards your Jade plant, getting less sunlight.
  • If the shadow is hazy, it points toward your Jade plant getting medium light.
  • And if the shadow is clear, it points towards your Jade plant getting excess light.

Can you Grow Jade Plants with Artificial Light?

Jade plants require a good amount of light or sunlight for growth.

But in case of an absence of proper lighting conditions, artificial lighting measures can continue the plant’s growth.

Jade Plant grown indoors
Artificial lighting makes up for the absence or lack of natural light exposure and sunlight.

These artificial lights include but are not limited to fluorescent light bulbs and LEDs.

Even high-pressure sodium bulbs can be used in this regard.

However, fluorescent light bulbs are preferred as they are easily accessible and do not sunburn the leaves easily.

Natural sunlight is the best option for the healthy growth of a Jade plant. However, in situations where providing sunlight is not possible, artificial lighting can help.

Things to Care About while Using Artificial Sources of Light

This sub-section will help you determine what factors to consider when using artificial light sources.

1. Light Intensity

While using artificial lighting, the light intensity has to be cared for.

The amount of light produced by the light source should be varied based on the signs the Jade plant shows.

According to the signs, adjustments should be made to get a healthy Jade plant.

Artificial lighting of the intensity range of 500 to 1,000 foot-candle would be better for the growth of the Jade plant.

2. Distance Between the Plant and Light

Artificial lights must be controlled by keeping a certain distance between the source of artificial light and the Jade plant.

This is important because keeping a very low distance could cause the heat produced by those high-pressure bulbs to sunburn the plant’s leaves.

Healthy plant growth can be possible only if the proper distance is maintained.

For a Jade plant, which can be associated with a foliage houseplant, 12 to 24 inches of distance between the artificial source of light and the plant would be good.

3. Quality of Light

Another essential aspect being considered is the quality of light passed. With technological advancements, this has become easier.

Grow lights (high output or HO fluorescents preferred) can be used as they emit light only from the red and blue wavelengths of the light spectrum.

4. Duration of Light Provided

Artificial lights can help sustain the life and growth of the Jade plant. But 4 or 5 hours of supplemental lighting won’t be enough for the plant.

It would require around 12 to 14 hours of supplemental lighting, which is a huge number in comparison to the natural sunlight exposure needed for the plant.

5. Color Temperature (Kelvin)

The ideal color temperature for the Jade plant is 5,000 Kelvins, which provides a cool, full-spectrum light that closely mimics sunlight.

Also, watch the video below for further information!

The Bottom Line

If you need the plant that does not need constant care and can grow substantially well under direct sunlight, the Jade plant is a good option.

The growth and maintenance of your Jade plant depend directly on how much light it gets throughout the day.

Nonetheless, it also grows in artificial lights or supplemental lighting.

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