Chinese Evergreen Light Requirements: How Much Light Is Enough?

Chinese evergreen plants are also a species that appear in the list of most popular ornamental plants. This plant can adapt and survive in a variety of conditions. Anyone who loves bonsai will be attracted by the bright green leaves with distinctive patterns on the leaves.

In particular, the Chinese evergreen is a plant that is relatively easy to grow, easy to care for, and resistant to many diseases. One of the important issues that you need to pay attention to when growing this plant is light. Light plays an important role in the growth of Chinese evergreen. Therefore, the Chinese evergreen light requirements are the top issue that you need to find out information about before planting this plant. In this article, we will cover important information about Chinese evergreen lighting needs.

Do Chinese Evergreens Need Sunlight?

Chinese evergreen plants are native to the tropical regions of New Guinea and Asia. So this plant still has enough light to photosynthesize and survive in its native environment. However, Chinese evergreen plants are famous as plants that can adapt to many different living conditions and lack of light. Many types of Chinese evergreens can survive in low light. However, like any plant that exists on earth, they still need light to sustain photosynthesis and exchange air.

For plants, photosynthesis is an important process for creating energy and sustaining life. Lack of light will cause Chinese evergreen plants to grow stunted and leaves to turn yellow and fall off. Eventually, they will slowly die out and cannot be revived when the light returns.

Chinese evergreen plants will do well if they receive low to medium-intensity indirect light for at least 8-10 hours per day. Direct light from the sun or artificial light from lamps will also help this plant sustain life. For each different type of Chinese evergreen plant, the need for light will also change. So you need to learn about the amount of light your plants need to photosynthesize each day.

What Kind Of Light Is Best For Chinese Evergreen Plants?

Indirect light is the most suitable type of light for the full growth of Chinese evergreen plants. If you grow this plant in your home or office, you can use artificial lights to provide light for them. Chinese evergreen plants can grow well with fluorescent light, so you don’t need to worry about a lack of light in a room or enclosed environment.

However, you also need to observe to check the speed and response of the plants to that light intensity. If they grow stunted or the leaves turn yellow, you should increase the time and intensity of light for the plants. In particular, you should not put the potted plant in direct sunlight. Direct sunlight with high intensity will cause the leaves of plants to burn and fall off.

The most ideal location for potted plants is an area with shade and indirect light every day. You can place the potted plant next to the window but with a curtain to avoid direct sunlight. Some other locations such as balconies, corridors, or planting Chinese evergreen plants under old trees. The large foliage will be responsible for filtering direct sunlight from the sun.

chinese evergreen light requirements

How Does Direct Light Affect Chinese Evergreen Plants?

Most types of Chinese evergreen plants do not tolerate intense direct sunlight for many hours. If you notice some of the signs below, you should move the pot to another location before the plants burn leaves.

Dry and brittle leaves: Direct sunlight will cause plants to lose water. Water will evaporate through the stomata on the surface of the leaf and cause the cells to become completely dehydrated. They will be deformed causing the leaves to dry, brittle, and burn.

The appearance of brown spots: High-intensity direct sunlight for many hours will burn leaves. Brown patches will appear and leaves that have been burned in the sun cannot be revived.

Rolled leaves: The leaves will curl up when exposed to too much sun. They curl up to reduce the area exposed to the sun and prevent evaporation in the remaining cells.

Dry and cracked soil: Sunlight will make the water evaporate faster, causing the soil to dry out quickly. Cracks will appear on the surface of the soil and the plants will wilt.

Excessive stress: Plants will be overstressed by exposure to too much sun, especially if they are deprived of water for long periods of time. Plants will be dry and wilted, and leaves turn yellow and fall all at once. The degree of plant regeneration will depend on the degree of sunburn and the ability of the root system to absorb water.

What Does Chinese Evergreen Do With No Sunlight?

This plant is well known for its tolerance to low light or lack of light. However, if plants are deprived of light for a long time, it will also affect plant growth. Here are some basic signs when Chinese evergreen plants are not receiving the necessary amount of light.

Leaves turn yellow: Lack of sunlight will inhibit the photosynthesis of plants. So plants cannot make chlorophyll to maintain the green color of their leaves. The leaves below will turn yellow and the entire leaf will change color if it does not receive light.

Plants look long and lean: When plants don’t get enough light, they can’t produce enough energy to grow healthy. As a result, the branches and trunk will become long, slender, and weak. Leaves will also gradually fall and very few new leaves will regrow due to lack of energy.

Leaves turn pale: If plants live in low light conditions for a long time, it will cause leaves to turn white or pale. Lack of light causes photosynthesis not to take place regularly, so green color is not maintained and leaves gradually lose pigment.

Stunted growth: Low light makes it impossible for plants to generate enough energy to grow quickly. So plants will be tilted towards the light in search of energy.

Root rot: If Chinese Evergreen plants do not have enough light plus improper watering, it will increase root rot. The soil will always be excessively wet because there is no evaporation of water under the heat of the sun. A humid environment will create favorable conditions for harmful fungi and bacteria to attack plants. Root rot disease will weaken the health of plants and gradually die.

How To Provide Enough Light For Chinese Evergreen Plants?

To ensure the healthy growth of plants, you need to provide the necessary amount of light according to their needs. Please note some important information below to maintain the health of Chinese Evergreen plants.

  • Place the potted plant about a meter away from the window and cover it with a curtain to avoid direct sunlight. The ideal location is a south-facing window to receive lots of indirect sunlight from the sun.
  • If you grow plants outdoors, use old stumps to plant them. Use a canopy or cover it with a layer of straw to limit direct sunlight with high intensity.
  • Do not place the pot in an area with complete shade, low light, or a closed room as the plants will grow stunted.
  • If you use artificial lights, use a timer or actively turn off the lights to ensure the required light time. The balance between light and darkness will help plants grow healthier.
  • Water properly in accordance with the actual circumstances and needs of the plant. If you grow plants outside in their natural environment, water them more often as they will receive light every day.
  • If you grow your plants in a room and area with low light, be sure to water when the ground is dry to avoid excessive moisture and lead to root rot.
  • Do not abuse artificial light from lamps, light from the sun is best for photosynthesis and metabolism in plants.
  • The amount of light can change with each season, so you need to balance the time for plants to be exposed to the right light.


Chinese Evergreen plants are easy-to-grow and easy-care plants. They will grow well in indirect light and do not tolerate direct sunlight. In addition, this plant can also survive in low light conditions and artificial light from fluorescent lamps. Therefore, you should place the potted plant in an area with indirect light from 8 to 12 hours a day.

Direct sunlight will burn the leaves and complete shade will inhibit the photosynthesis of plants. Therefore, you need to balance between light and darkness to stimulate plant growth. Lack of light will affect the health and growth rate of plants. Some of these problems include stunted plant growth, pale leaves, yellowing leaves, dry and curled leaves, or mass leaf drop. To maintain the health of your plants, you should regularly check their growth, soil moisture, and daily light intake.

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