Less flowering: your plants will have fewer flowers if they lack light


Less flowering: your plants will have fewer flowers if they lack light

You may wait anxiously for your plants to flourish and end up disappointed … there are numerous causes why these when the time comes, do not meet your expectations; they bloom little or do not do it at all. Today we are going to see one of the main ones: it is the lack of light. Do not forget, your plants will have fewer flowers if they lack light.


Inadequate light exposure is probably the main reason for the absence of flowers in many of our plants, although there may be others such as lack of nutrients, inadequate pruning or cold, for example.

If you think next week we talk about all of them together, but today I want to emphasize lighting, as it is a recurring theme in many of the consultations.

Providing adequate light, in hours and intensity, is essential for the health of plants. Of course, each species has its own requirements that you will have to consult. You have a multitude of guides on the Internet and on this blog, without going any further.

As you already know, plants require light to carry out photosynthesis and thus obtain the essential energy to survive and develop – this is not new; We have already tried it before.

Consequently, without the adequate light to satisfy the requirements of this or that species, the specimen will focus exclusively on its survival: it will not invest a surplus that it does not have in generating flowers for its reproduction.

It is a common situation in plants grown indoors, especially when they are forced against nature, although it will also occur in your garden if you do not have certain precautions.

Indoor behavior

It is not uncommon to use gardenias or mini rosebushes inside our homes to protect them from the cold or perhaps for pleasure, when, on the contrary, they need a lot of light. If you are forced to introduce the plants in winter, place them in a very bright place and take them out again as soon as you can; otherwise, they will not flower.

Species that are accepted as “indoor” are simply because they can not tolerate the cold and live in the shade, light or not, of other plants in their natural environment. Therefore, the conditions of a home or office will be in some way admissible.


However do not be surprised if they never bloom; these circumstances do not have to be the ideals.

In cases of extreme lack, the plants will not even get the energy required to survive. Sooner rather than later they will end up dying, either prey to plagues or opportunistic diseases or to the exhaustion of their reserves.

If the specimen comes from a nursery or is well fed, it will still give you a chance. The first symptoms will be the abnormal lengthening of their stems. You will see more distance between the knots. The plant will strive desperately to reach that extra light from which you have deprived it, stretching in one or the other direction.

However, when it lacks reserves, the process will still be more dramatic. It will stop its growth immediately and its leaves will turn yellow until they fall. If you do not want this to happen, you should be careful to rectify it in time.

Outdoor plants

The plants in your garden or terrace will not be spared by the simple fact of being outside. If rose bushes, hibiscus, steppes, cherry trees, lemon trees … are located erroneously -oriented to the north or covered by dense canopies or tall buildings-, being plants with great lighting requirements, you will end up having difficulties.

Before choosing the species to plant, you must always keep this point in mind, otherwise, the flowering will be compromised and probably also your health. Remember that aphids and other pests – also fungi – will be eager to meet your plants during low hours.

To favor flowering and prevent phytosanitary problems, both in trees and in shrubs, it will be a good idea to also have some maintenance pruning; more than anything from its inner branches. This way you will get more light in your glasses and improve the circulation of air.

This work is even more important in some fruit trees, although always respecting the uniqueness of each species. If there were less flowering, the harvest would be reduced accordingly.

But just as the lack of light, the opposite assumption can be observed. With plants that like protection but that we place to the sun, we only get to damage its leaves. Their tissues would burn very easily, reaching the point of withering. This would be the case for example of ivy, aralia, rhododendron, begonia or cyclamen.