The Secrets to Garden-in-a-Can Success: Plenty of Sunlight

Did You Know? The number one reason why herbs fail to grow indoors is that they don’t get enough sunshine!

If you’re struggling with growth in your Garden-in-a-Can, Garden-in-a-Jar, or really any indoor plant, this tip is for you. It is highly likely that your plant might need more sunlight. In order to get the optimal growth going, and get the healthiest plants that make the tastiest herbs, you may need to move your herbs to a brighter spot in your home.

Herbs need about 6-8 hours of direct light per day to thrive. The light we’re talking about here is not just your ordinary house lamp or light bulb. It’s pure unadulterated UV-rays, baby! That type of light can only come from sunshine or a full spectrum bulb like a grow lamp. P.S. It’s the same type of light you need to get a nice, bronze tan! Ideally, you would just put your little herb cans on your windowsill or patio in direct sun for most of the day. However, if your plant’s current home is dark or doesn’t get the right type of light, we’ve got some tips to help you out.

Just look at the difference between basil grown in indirect light vs. direct light! What a distinction!



Here are three easy tips to help make sure your plants get the light they need:


Tip #1: Place your GIC in a South-facing Window

The sun’s path gives south-facing windows day-long sunshine, which is perfect for your herbs! If you need a little help finding your cardinal directions (I know I do), use your smartphone’s compass app to direct yourself south. If you’re facing out the window and your compass says “S” you’re good to go — this is a great spot for your plant.

Tip #2: Conduct a Shadow Test

What’s a shadow test, you ask? Well, the goal of a shadow test is to determine whether the light in a given area is direct or indirect. If you have a light meter (whatever that is) use it! It’ll serve the same purpose as this test. For the rest of us, here’s how you do a shadow test.

First, around mid-day place your hand about 1 foot above where you want your plant to sit and spread your fingers out wide.

Next, look at the shadow cast by your hand. If the shadow is clearly defined and looks recognizably like a hand, that means the light is strong and direct. And therefore, the spot is a great place to as your plant’s home. If the shadow is fuzzier and fainter, the spot may not be optimal for plant growth.

Tip #3: Add an LED Grow Light

If you can’t find a south-facing window, fear not! All you need to do is supplement whatever sunshine you get with a Grow Light, like this one. This simple addition to your indoor garden can radically improve the growth of your plants. 

We hope this post helps your indoor garden to thrive and grow. If you have any other questions, check out our extensive FAQ Section. Or feel free to reach out to us via email or Facebook message, if you have any other questions or concerns – our incredible Community Happiness Guru, Emily, is here to help.

Happy growing!


By Tom S. @ Back to the Roots

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