How much sunlight does an Aloe Vera plant need?
For such a versatile plant, this is a very open ended question that when addressed- we need to look at a number of different variables when answering the question of how much sunlight an Aloe Vera plant actually need.
Aloe Vera plants are indigenous to arid lands and desert-like climates so they are accustomed to enduring a lot of sunlight. However, being a succulent plant means they can survive many different weather conditions as they are by nature a ‘self-sustaining’ plant.
Aloe Vera is popular to grow as a common house plant and can ideally be kept in your garden in the summer months without needing a lot of maintenance. If you live in a country where they will get a lot of sun, planting your Aloe in a dry site will work best to get the most from your succulent plant, keep in mind that they can tolerate a little shade and this plant is a natural born survivor- so you can grow your plant indoors also. Learn how much water an Aloe Plant needs here.
The adaptive skills of True Aloe Barbadensis does not mean we encourage you to leave the plant in places with too much shade and if grown inside should be done so with correct procedures to ensure the plant is fully nourished.
Video of a thriving Aloe Vera Plant
Aloe is considered a native plant to the African Mediterranean but it has been used by humans for such a long period that its roots could be debated upon extensively. The US Department of Agriculture produces blooming Aloe plants through the summer months so it is not necessarily a question of where the plant actually comes from.
So how much sun light is needed?
For optimal results, full sunlight through the day will allow your plant to grow well, we would never advise you to plant your aloe vera is areas of deep shade. If you do plan to grow you aloe plant indoors; then you should place it in a pot by your window or any other place that gets direct sunlight for a decent part of the day. West or south facing windows will usually catch more sunlight and they will blossom more this when they can achieve photosynthesis.
We strongly recommend that you don’t let your plant be more than 5 ft away from a window that gets adequate sunlight throughout the day. This would basically be like starving your plant.
Is there such thing as too much sunlight when growing an Aloe plant?
Even when using our guidelines it will take some trial and error to figure out the perfect lighting situation for your plant.
Also if you live in cooler climates, this can make for some very unpredictable weather so even in Summer you may not get as much sunlight as you hope for.
Your aloe plant can get too much sunlight and a good way to identify this problem is if the plant appears burnt.
The plant will appear wrinkled and start developing brown spots, these are both indicators of poor health in your aloe plant but if you notice them early on you can easily save the plant.
So what about the signs of not enough light?
Aloe plant leaves usually grow upwards and outwards like they reaching out to the sun, just like a flower would do.
Aloe plant leaves will do the opposite when they don’t get enough light and can actually look limp and droopy.
Take note on what direction the leaves are growing, this can tell you if the plant is getting enough sunlight.
Using artificial light
You cannot replace direct natural sunlight. Although there are cases when you may need to consider artificial lighting to help your Aloe Vera plant grow.
If you live in places with long winters, this can mean months of dark, gloomy days that are not ideal for growing any kind of plant.
You can always consider using artificial lighting to supplement the growth and nourishment of your plant.
We advise you not to keep your plants near windowsills in winter as this could encourage frost.
If you do use artificial lighting in the winter months then you won’t need to use as much as you would think- aloe plants lay dormant in the winter months and so you would simply need to maintain it.
Again this will take some trial and error but using our guidelines you will be able to identify whether or not the plant is getting too much or too little sunlight.
If you haven' t already grown your Aloe plant and would like to start right away we have plants available on our Aloe Vera products page for sale to get you started.
So we hope this has helped answer your questions on how much sunlight your aloe plant will need to flourish and grow.
There is no right or wrong answer as every plant is different and we all live in very different conditions and parts of the world with different climates to consider.