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Sunlight, or the lack thereof depending on the plant, is a critical element in gardening. Most people who struggle with gardening often have a sunlight problem. Plants that do no not bear fruit like leafy greens or even green beans can get away with about four-five hours of direct sunlight and produce. They prefer more, but they can still yield a modest amount.

Tomatoes, peppers, and squash really like at least six good hours and prefer eight or more. Such plants thrive in the open sunlight as they consume tons of light needed for heavy vegetable production.

Needless to say, sunlight is also important for heat, though that can be gained without direct light on the plant. The change of the seasons affects this also as the earth sun relationship changes throughout the year. Early sunlight tends to be a softer heat, and plants love early to midday sun. After that, it can become harsh and begin to be counterproductive because of too much direct scorching heat as summer progresses.

Furthermore, sunlight is a major factor in pest control because it will help dry the plant and ground out during periods of heavy moisture. Plants growing in too much shade will yield to the stress of excessive moisture that is not escaping and thereby fostering a cesspool a insects, disease, etc.

Therefore, if you want a thriving garden, you gotta get those plants some sunlight. Planting on a south facing slope or unobstructed south facing part of your property will practically guarantee year round sunlight, which is especially important in the early Spring and Fall when the sun rises and sets lower on the horizon. That’s actually a key factor to why we bought the property that we have settled into. It is on a south facing slope, which us also great for solar panels by the way.

Happy Gardening!