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How Much Sun Does a Spider Plant Need?

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Last updated on September 26th, 2022 at 01:04 pm

For spider plants to increase and be able to multiply, they should be able to flower, and the flowering of spider plants is controlled mainly by sufficient access to sunlight.

In essence, you can then say that light determines the growth and development of spider plants. Also, being a native of South Africa, the spider plant thrives best in a warm tropical climate where there is enough access to light.

Yet this leaves us with the question, how much sunlight does a spider plant need?

A spider plant will thrive well if given a daily dose of eight to ten hours of light. Although, having the ability to tolerate lower light and grow in part-shade to shade, spider plant thrives best in bright indirect sunlight. Low light will result in a slow plant growth rate, while too much sunlight will cause sunburn and scorching of leaves.

Do Indoor Spider Plant Need Sunlight?

Indoor spider plant needs sunlight because even though you are supposed to grow them outside naturally, your growing them inside your house does not change the fact that it need thrive. Also, just like every plant needs photosynthesis to produce its food, indoor spider plants also need sunlight to photosynthesize.

For photosynthesis to occur in spider plants, there must be access to sunlight. And through this photosynthesis, your spider plant will be able to use water and carbon dioxide in the air to manufacture sugar and oxygen.

The sugar will be used as energy by your flower plant to carry out cellular activities and stored for flowering and production of spiderettes.

Then the oxygen will be released by your spider plant into the environment while collecting other toxic gases like formaldehyde, xylene, benzene, and carbon monoxide, thereby purifying the air in your home and office.

Though your spider plant may be staying indoors, you can still give it the necessary sun requirement by ensuring that it still gets up to eight to ten hours of indirect sunlight every day.

Just as it is in the tropical forest of South Africa where it originates from, it is usually found growing under tree canopies where it receives indirect sunlight and partial shade.

So, if you are growing your spider plant indoors, the best locations to keep them are in your bedroom, porch, steamy bathroom, and even your living room.

And in these locations, you will keep them five to six feet away from your window or anywhere that they can still get the light reflected from the floor as long as it is in a bright position.

Even if you place your spider plant in the eastern or western window where it will no doubt receive a few hours of light, it will also be of significant benefit to your plant. But make sure to avoid the intense effect of the sun to protect the foliage of your plant.

Can Spider Plant Survive Without Sunlight?

Spider plants are remarkable when it comes to tolerating low light, yet going without sunlight is a huge challenge for it since your spider plant needs light to carry out photosynthesis. And yes, indeed, spider plants can survive without sunlight as long as you are willing to provide the requirement that will substitute for sunlight like the grow light bulb.

You may be given a room that unfortunately does not have any window, probably a basement, but then you would love to have your spider plant with you. The question is, in such a place without access to light, how would you take care of your spider plant?

To adequately substitute for the sunlight your plant needs, you must purchase a grow light bulb. And these should be of the standard E-26 base bulb, with such you can place it in a regular lamp and holder that you make use of at home.

By providing these lights as a substitute for sunlight, you will come to see that your spider plant will grow and thrive well as if they were never taken away from sunlight.

This will even allow your spider plant to flower and produce spiderettes that will allow propagation and multiplication of your spider plant around the home.

Can Spider Plant Live in Low Light?

Although the more the sunlight, the better it will be for your spider plant. If you are growing a spider plant, it will be reassuring to know that your spider plant can remarkably tolerate low light. And yes, your spider plant can continue to live as long as you make sure that all other conditions necessary for your plant to thrive, like fertilizer, water, humidity, and healthy soil, are adequately provided.

The winter months also usually come with low light issues, which when coupled with the cool weather, can become a challenge for your spider plant.

At this period, your spider plant often becomes dormant with no new leaves emerging from the plant. These months also bring about some negative effects on your spider plant, such as the occurrence of yellowing of leaves and the falling off of older leaves.

But with the emergence of spring, your spider plant has the hope of returning to being healthy once again. You can also take the necessary step to help your spider plant survive winter by moving them from its usual location to a warmer and brighter position.

By expending such effort, you would be providing some extra care and giving your spider plant a better chance of survival.

What Effect Will Excess Sunlight Have on Spider Plant?

Even though your spider plant prefers much bright light, you have to be careful not to allow it to gain access to too much light. The reason being excess sunlight could lead to some harmful effects on your plants.

The following are the signs that you would notice due to your plant’s exposure to sunlight:

1. Yellow Leaves

This is a situation usually caused by moisture stress relating to under watering when excess sunlight causes water to evaporate from soil and prevents it from carrying out photosynthesis.

2. Brown Tips

Brown tips happen when excess sunlight causes the evaporation of water from the soil. The plant will then be forced to absorb too much fertilizer and too much salt built up in the soil. So, therefore, the absence of water will result in the tips of the plant turning brown.

3. Leaf Burn

This condition usually occurs when the water drops that come together form on leaves, act as a magnification class that focuses the energy from the sun into intense beams that eventually burn the leaves of your spider plant.

4. Crisp Leaves

This is a situation when too much sunlight causes plants’ dehydration and causes the cells in leaves to no longer stand erect.

5. Curling of Leaves

This is when the heat stress from excess sunlight causes rapid evaporation and makes plants curl upward in an attempt to conserve moisture.

6. Droopy Leaves

Droopy leaves result from too much sunlight causing transpiration at a rate where the water going out of the plant is higher than the amount coming into the plant. Also leads to your plant’s stem and leaves being unable to stand erect.

7. Dry and Flaky Soil

This occurs when there is too much sunlight to the extent that all water from the soil is evaporated. These signs can easily be mistaken for overwatering and under watering, so you can accurately observe your spider plant and its surroundings to see if it is an issue of water or the position of your plant in respect to sunlight.

What Effect Will Insufficient Sunlight Have on Spider Plant?

The following are the things that happen when your plant is not getting sufficient sunlight as required:

1. Stunted Growth

When there is insufficient sunlight, your spider plant would be unable to make its food because every plant needs sunlight to produce its food through photosynthesis. So, in essence, inadequate nutrition will lead to stunted growth.

2. Weaker Foliage

Insufficient sunlight will also result in the leaves of your spider plant changing colors and falling off.

3. Soggy Soil

This is when there is waterlogging of the soil due to insufficient sunlight to carry out evaporation and transpiration in your spider plant.

4. Unhealthy Growth

This condition refers to when your spider plant cannot photosynthesize, and the soil seems to also be experiencing a very poor condition.

5. Root Rot

This results from too much water in your soil and when there is no way for air to reach your plant’s roots. This is also related to there not being enough sunlight to evaporate the water from the soil. This will lead to root rot.

6. Yellowing of Leaves

This is also a form of moisture stress related to overwatering, where there is not enough sunlight to cause water evaporation and photosynthesis.

If your spider plant is not receiving enough sunlight, it will be unable to photosynthesize, thereby, unable to produce enough food.

As a result, your spider plant will be storing energy to survive and stay alive instead of focusing on its growth and development.


To thrive, spider plants need bright indirect sunlight. Indoor spider plants also need sunlight to survive by carrying out photosynthesis.

And yes, indeed, your spider plant can survive without sunlight if you are willing to provide a substitute light like the substitute grow light bulb. Also, your spider plant can tolerate low light and grow in part shade to shade.

Finally, giving your plant excess or insufficient sunlight will result in your spider plant ending up in a terrible condition which may even eventually lead to the death of the plant.


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