How To Get Your Monstera To Thrive With Grow Lights

When inviting a Monstera plant into your indoor green space, you might be wondering if artificial grow lights can be a worthy substitute for natural sunlight.

Here’s some great news for you! Monstera plants can thrive under the care of grow lights, even if your home doesn’t bask in a bounty of natural light.

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These versatile green wonders react favorably to LED grow lights – a more advantageous choice compared to their incandescent counterparts, as they stay cool and are less likely to singe the lush leaves of your plant.

pink grow lights

Aiming for the quintessential fenestrations that make Monstera plants so distinctive? Delivering 10-12 hours of bright, yet indirect lighting from grow lights each day is the magic number.

By addressing your Monstera plant’s light needs with grow lights, you can ensure its healthy growth and enhance its appearance, making it a stunning addition to your indoor garden.

Why Do Monstera Plants Need Grow Lights

Monstera plants need a lot of indirect light from natural or artificial sources. Let’s get into the details of the lighting needs of Monstera plants.

Fenestration and the Importance of Light in Monstera Plants

One fascinating characteristic of mature Monstera plants is the fenestration, or the unique leaf-holes, that naturally develop in their leaves.

This process is not just an aesthetic feature; it plays a significant role in the plant’s survival strategy in its native rainforest environment. The holes allow sunlight to pass through the lower leaves, enabling it to reach the younger leaves growing beneath.

However, achieving this captivating fenestration in an indoor setting requires sufficient light exposure.

Monstera fenestration

While Monstera plants are generally tolerant of lower light conditions, inadequate light can impact the plant’s ability to develop these distinctive leaf-holes.

In fact, it’s been noted among Monstera enthusiasts that plants kept in low light conditions tend to produce smaller, solid leaves without the characteristic fenestration.

On the other hand, when provided with bright, indirect light, Monsteras are more likely to develop leaves with more pronounced fenestrations.

That’s where grow lights can make a difference, particularly during winter months or in darker rooms. The right grow light can supplement natural sunlight, ensuring your Monstera receives the light intensity needed to thrive and fenestrate.

However, keep in mind that while Monsteras appreciate bright light, direct sunlight can scorch their leaves. So, whether you’re using natural or grow lights, ensure the light is indirect to avoid damaging your plant.

Sunlight vs Artificial Light

Monstera plants thrive when they receive sufficient lighting, which is why grow lights can be beneficial, especially in areas with less natural sunlight.

These tropical plants originate from dense rainforests, where they are accustomed to dappled, indirect sunlight.

Therefore, direct sunlight can be harsh on their leaves, whereas grow lights are able to mimic the conditions they naturally prefer.

LED grow lights, in particular, can be a great option for Monsteras, as they don’t overheat and have a lower chance of burning the leaves.

When providing your Monstera with grow lights, aim for 10 to 12 hours of bright, indirect lighting every day for optimal growth.

Photosynthesis and Chlorophyll

Photosynthesis is a crucial process that allows plants to convert sunlight into energy for growth.

In Monstera plants, chlorophyll, a green pigment found in their leaves, absorbs light and uses it to produce energy.

This energy fuels the plant’s growth and development of distinctive fenestrations.

Inadequate lighting can lead to the Monstera plant becoming leggy and lacking in vitality.

By using grow lights, you can ensure a consistent artificial light source that provides your Monstera with the necessary wavelengths for optimal photosynthesis and chlorophyll production.

Types of Grow Lights for Monstera

When it comes to providing optimal light conditions for your Monstera plant, you can choose from different types of grow lights.

Let’s discuss LED, fluorescent, incandescent, high-intensity discharge (HID) lights.

LED Lights

LED (light-emitting diode) lights are popular for growing Monstera plants due to their energy efficiency and long lifespan.

They emit a full spectrum of light that closely resembles natural sunlight, which helps promote healthy growth.

Another key advantage of LED lights is their lower heat output, reducing the risk of burning or damaging the plant’s leaves.

Check out this BoostGro LED grow lights on Amazon.

Fluorescent Lights

Fluorescent grow lights come in two main types: compact fluorescent lights (CFLs) and T5 grow lights (tube lights).

The T5 lights offer brighter illumination and are designed specifically for plant growth. CFLs can also be used for small-scale indoor plant cultivation but may not be as effective for larger Monstera plants.

While not as energy-efficient as LED lights, fluorescent lights are still a more economical choice when compared to incandescent or HID lights.

Check out the Hydrofarm fluorescent grow lights on Amazon.

Incandescent Light

Although incandescent grow lights are cheaper upfront, they produce a lot of heat and have a shorter lifespan.

The heat generated by these bulbs can be detrimental to your Monstera plant, leading to leaf burn or other damages.

When considering energy efficiency and plant safety, incandescent lights aren’t the best choice for Monstera plants.

High-Intensity Discharge (HID)

HID lights, such as metal halide (MH) and high-pressure sodium (HPS) lamps, are another option for those looking to provide supplemental light for their Monstera plants.

MH bulbs emit a bluish-white light that encourages vegetative growth, while HPS bulbs produce a warm, reddish light that is ideal for flowering plants.

However, these options are not as energy-efficient as LED lights, and they generate more heat, which can be problematic for Monstera plants.

Remember to keep in mind the energy efficiency, heat output, and appropriate spectrum when choosing the right grow light for your Monstera plant.

While LED lights stand out as the optimal choice, you can still achieve healthy growth with other types of grow lights if you closely monitor the conditions and adjust accordingly.

Choosing the Right Grow Light

Growing Monstera plants indoors may require additional grow light in order to meet their light needs.

In this section, we will discuss the various factors to consider when choosing the best grow light for your Monstera plant.

Light Intensity and Requirements

Monstera plants thrive in bright indirect sunlight, so it’s essential to choose a grow light that mimics this type of light.

A LED full spectrum grow light is an excellent choice for all Monstera varieties as it provides an ideal balance of blue and red spectrum light.

These lights are also energy-efficient and produce minimal heat, which reduces the risk of damaging your plant.

Remember to provide your Monstera with the right amount of light intensity. It’s a good idea to place the grow light at least 12 inches away from your plant to avoid burning the leaves.

Foot Candles

Light intensity is often measured in foot-candles, which indicate the amount of light received at a specific distance.

Monstera plants typically need around 200-400 foot-candles, but this can vary depending on your growing variety.

To determine the correct foot-candles for your plant, consult a plant care guide specific to your Monstera variety.


Budget is an important consideration when selecting grow lights for your Monstera plants.

While there are options available for various budgets, it is crucial to prioritize the quality of light that your plants receive.

Investing in high-quality grow lights can significantly impact the growth and health of your Monstera plants.

When it comes to budget-friendly options, fluorescent lights, such as T5 or T8 bulbs, are often more affordable than other types of grow lights.

They provide a decent light spectrum for basic growth needs. However, it’s important to note that fluorescent lights are not as energy-efficient as newer LED (light-emitting diode) lights.

Proper Placement and Setting of Grow Lights

Plant under grow lights

Don’t know where to place your Monstera? Here are essential tips.

Distance and Location

When using grow lights for your Monstera plant, it’s essential to maintain an appropriate distance between the light source and the plant.

The recommended grow light distance for Monstera is no more than 12 inches. Adjust this distance as your plant grows to maintain proper lighting conditions.

An adjustable grow light system can be beneficial since it allows you to easily modify the distance between the light and the plant.

If possible, include a timer to ensure your Monstera receives around 10-12 hours of light per day, which is the ideal duration for optimal growth.

East-Facing and West-Facing Windows

Monstera plants prefer bright, indirect light, and placing them near east-facing or west-facing windows can help them get the right amount of illumination.

These window orientations usually provide adequate natural light for a Monstera, without the risk of exposure to harsh direct sunlight which can burn the leaves.

However, if your plant is not receiving enough light from these windows, you can supplement it with grow lights.

Ensure that the grow lights mimic the natural light conditions of east or west-facing windows for the best results.

South-Facing Windows

While south-facing windows tend to receive the most sunlight during the day, Monstera plants should not be placed too close to them due to the risk of receiving direct light.

Instead, keep your Monstera several feet away from south-facing windows to protect them from harmful sun rays.

If your Monstera is still struggling to receive enough light near a south-facing window or if you do not have suitable windows available, consider using grow lights to ensure your plant gets enough indirect light.

Pay attention to the light intensity and double-check that the grow lights provide the necessary light conditions for healthy growth.

Caring for Monstera Plants Under Grow Lights

Monstera plants, also known as Swiss Cheese Plants, have specific light requirements that need to be met for optimal growth.

Using grow lights can be helpful in providing the necessary light, especially during winter months and for low-light conditions.

Winter Months Care

During the cold winter months, providing Monstera plants with their required 10 to 12 hours of indirect, bright light daily is challenging.

In these situations, grow lights can be used to supplement natural sunlight, helping the plants to continue thriving.

It’s essential to monitor the duration of light exposure, ideally between 12 to 16 hours, with a period of darkness for 8 to 12 hours to allow the plant to rest.

Low Light Conditions

Monsteras can do well in medium to low light, but they prefer at least 5+ hours of bright, indirect sunlight. If you live in an area with limited natural light or if your Monstera is in a dark room, grow lights offer a practical solution.

Ensure that the plant is placed at an appropriate distance from the light source to prevent leaf burn caused by direct light exposure.

Avoiding Overwatering

While providing light is essential for your Monstera’s growth, it’s crucial not to neglect its watering needs. Be cautious when scaling the watering frequency since they can fall victim to overwatering.

Look out for signs of yellow leaves, which might indicate that you’re watering your Monstera plant too much.

These tropical plants prefer a well-draining soil mix, be sure to allow the soil to dry out slightly between watering sessions to avoid overwatering.

Monstera Varieties and Their Lighting Preferences

In this section, we will discuss the lighting preferences of various Monstera varieties, such as Monstera Deliciosa, Monstera Albo, and Monstera Adansonii.

These plants are popular for their unique and beautiful leaves, and understanding their lighting requirements is crucial for their growth and health.

Monstera Deliciosa

Monstera Deliciosa is a popular houseplant with large, perforated leaves.

This variety thrives in bright, indirect light, needing a minimum of 75- to 100-foot candles and a preferred level of 200- to 500-foot candles.

Placing the plant a few feet away from a south-facing, east-facing, or west-facing window will help maintain the appropriate amount of light. Be cautious of putting the plant in direct sunlight, as it can burn the leaves.

Some key points for Monstera Deliciosa lighting include:

  • Bright, indirect light
  • Preferred light levels of 200-500 foot candles
  • Avoid direct sunlight to prevent leaf burn

Monstera Albo

Monstera Albo, also known as Variegated Monstera, features stunning white and green leaves. Similar to the Monstera Deliciosa, this variety also prefers bright, indirect sunlight.

Providing enough ambient and scattered light will ensure healthy leaf growth and prevent the variegated leaves from scorching.

As Monstera Albo is more sensitive to light than other varieties, it is particularly essential to avoid direct sunlight exposure.

Points for Monstera Albo lighting include:

  • Bright, indirect light
  • Sensitive to direct sunlight
  • Ideal location: a few feet away from a window

Monstera Adansonii

The Monstera Adansonii, known for its unique, hole-ridden leaves, has lighting requirements similar to both Monstera Deliciosa and Monstera Albo.

It also thrives in bright, indirect light, and positioning the plant near a south-facing, east-facing, or west-facing window is optimal for proper growth.

Be cautious of exposing the plant to direct sunlight, as this can cause the leaves to burn.

In summary, Monstera Adansonii lighting requires:

  • Bright, indirect light
  • Location near a south-facing, east-facing, or west-facing window
  • Protection from direct sunlight

Additional Benefits and Tips

Growing Monstera under grow lights has some added benefits and these are:

Faster Growth and Foliage Health

Using grow lights can help your Monstera plant experience faster growth and improved foliage health.

By providing the right type of artificial light, such as full-spectrum white or red/blue spectrum, you can mimic the natural sunlight that Monstera plants thrive in.

This is particularly useful in areas where natural light is limited or during the winter months when daylight hours are shorter.

To ensure the best possible growth, make sure to follow these tips:

  • Provide 6 to 8 hours of light per day.
  • Use fluorescent or LED lights with a color spectrum of 2700-3000K and a PAR value between 100-400 μmol/m2/s.
  • Position the lights at least 18-24 inches away from the plant and adjust the distance based on how the leaves respond to the light intensity.

By providing the appropriate artificial light and following recommended care tips, you can enjoy a thriving and beautiful Monstera plant in your home or indoor garden.

Want to know what will happen to Monstera without proper lighting? Read about it in this article: 4 Reasons for Yellow Spots on Monstera Leaves

How To Get Your Monstera To Thrive With Grow Lights