Do Indoor Plants Need Darkness?

We always hear people go on and on about how important light is for your house plants, but have you ever heard about the role of darkness in your plant’s growth? Well, the question here is that do indoor plants need darkness?

Do Indoor Plants Need Darkness? The answer is yes. Indoor plants need darkness to boost their metabolism and help them grow. The plants produce food throughout the day, so they cannot focus on growth during daylight, but in the darkness, is when plants can finally rest, and their growing starts.

So, your plants need darkness but how much and how often? These are some of the questions I will be answering for you because your indoor plants need all the care possible. So, let’s get right into it.

What Exactly Happens During Darkness?

Your plant does not sleep at night; it only stops producing food or blossoms which means it has some handy self-care time at night. So, plants do not need sleep; they perform a different set of activities at night.

Photosynthesis does not occur in the dark, which means they are not making their food, and it is showtime. With a busy day of producing food and working, your plant starts its growth phase in darkness.

When it’s dark, your plant starts using the energy it has stored during the daytime to grow, so basically, all the growth happens at night, just like all your self-care happens on Sundays.

Why Your Plant Needs Darkness?

Your plant needs darkness quite a lot, but there are quite a lot of reasons why so, let’s get into those reasons one by one.

1. Quicker Growth

If you leave your plant in the dark regularly for a certain period, you will see significant growth in your houseplants. It is because all the growth happens in darkness, so the plants that get enough darkness to grow quicker than the plants that don’t.

2. Bigger Plants

If your house plants are not getting any bigger, darkness is here at your rescue. If your plants get enough darkness they require, they can grow much longer than you can expect. It does not mean that you leave your plant in darkness for longer.

The exposure to darkness should not be prolonged; otherwise, your plant will use all the energy it has stored and will grow to be quite weak, which you certainly do not want.

3. Survival

Certain plants love darkness much more than others do. These plants need darkness for their survival and perform the best when it’s dark around. So, if your house is very dark, you should probably get some gloom-loving plants.

How Much Darkness Does Your Plant Need?

The duration of darkness plays a key role in boosting the plant’s growth because moderate darkness can actually prove to be pretty beneficial for your house plant. How much darkness your plant needs depends upon the stage of growth your plant is at.

You can always choose a cycle that is suitable for your plant. For example, in the initial stages of your plants, it is better if your plant is exposed to darkness for 12 hours and 18 hours to light. But, this cycle changes with the change in growth.

When your plant grows enough, you can swap the cycle to 16 hours of light and 8 hours of darkness. When your plant is full-grown, you need to provide 12 hours of light and 12 hours of darkness.

So, it proves that your plant needs darkness in all the stages of its growth. Also, this light and dark cycle can vary with the habitat and nature of your plant.

Plants That Can Thrive in Darkness

Plants cannot really survive in complete darkness as they always require light to produce their food. If you place your house plants in complete darkness for a week or so, they will end up dying or severely damaged.

It shows that every plant needs light, but the only difference is that certain plants require less light than others. Those plants that can grow with more darkness and less light are called low-light plants.

So, if you are living in an environment where you cannot get a lot of sunlight in a day so, you can get some of these low-light plants, and they will thrive in darkness. Following are some of the most famous low-light plants that you should get your hands on.

Peace lilies

Snake plants

Lucky bamboo

Devil’s ivy

Kentia palm

Sword fern

These plants can survive in low-light, so you can also place them in your office or your home with minimum light available.

How To Save Your Plants From Complete Darkness?

If you don’t have sunlight at your house and your plants cannot get enough light, they will be exposed to darkness 24/7. It can result in the death of your plant, but you can save the day by providing light.

The easiest solution is artificial light that can save your plants from complete darkness. These are the full-spectrum bulbs that can give your plants all the light they need to make them grow and thrive.

You also get many choices in artificial bulbs according to intensity, size, and price. These bulbs are also pretty affordable and do not consume much electricity, so you can always count on them.

The lights come in different colors that also affect your plants and make them bloom like never before. If you don’t want to buy a new light, your regular house light will also work. You should just put your houseplants nearer to your regular lights.


Now, you know that your indoor plants do need darkness but in moderation, make sure that you take care of it as your plants are really fragile and sensitive when it comes to light and dark cycles. Do not expose your plants to a lot of light or a lot of darkness, and consider artificial lights if you have to. I am wishing you a very happy and lightened day to your houseplant.

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