Do plants grow at night? Plants get bigger at night with the help of a process called respiration. Respiration converts oxygen and glucose to energy, which the plant uses in cell division and multiplication.

Do Plants Grow at Night

The growth rate is higher at night because most of the energy is channeled toward cell growth. Read on to learn how plants sprout during the night without a light.

Do Plants Grow at Night Time?

Yes, plants grow at night time, and this is because they would be respiring even when light is not present. They respire and manage the photosynthesis process that they go through during the day, and this way they would grow at night time.

At night, plants use the stored glucose to respire, producing energy and carbon Dioxide. Glucose is produced through photosynthesis; if you are wondering about what do plants do at night. The energy produced through respiration is used in cell growth, which leads to the plant’s growth.

But what time of day do plants grow the most? The growth rate is faster during the evening and at night time due to the absence of sunlight. Plant cells are busier during the day as they absorb sunlight and photosynthesize.

So if you, for instance, think, do buds grow by night or day, it’s actually budding mostly grow at night. During this time, the plant focuses its energy on the growth of the cells. Some plants even need long nights of complete darkness for proper budding. The flower opens up in the morning because pollination helpers like bees and birds are awake.

– Respiration Process

Plants develop through the help of two processes; photosynthesis and respiration. Through photosynthesis, plants use sunlight, water, and carbon dioxide to produce oxygen and glucose. They also produce energy during respiration. Glucose and energy aid with cell growth.

Respiration Process of Plants

But how does respiration happen at night in the absence of light? While photosynthesis relies on sunlight to produce glucose and oxygen, respiration can occur in darkness. Therefore, the plant respires 24 hours.

Respiration is a chemical process through which organisms and plants release energy from food. The plant stores oxygen and glucose it produces through photosynthesis during the day. It then converts glucose and oxygen to energy.

The plant will then use the energy produced for the growth of new cells, and as a result, these cells increase the size of the stems, roots, leaves, and branches. Some plants develop more at night than during the day because all the energy produced is not channeled toward photosynthesis but toward the growth of the cells.

– Regulating Temperature and Hydration

If you have ever wondered when do plants grow the fastest, you should know that plants are likely to develop more at night. The energy produced through respiration is only used for cell growth.

Besides photosynthesis, the plant has other processes, like regulating the temperatures and hydration. These processes require energy from the glucose produced during photosynthesis. However, the plant stores some of the unused glucose for night processes like respiration.

When respiration happens at night, energy is produced alongside carbon dioxide. Since the cells are not working hard to photosynthesize, they do not need energy. Therefore, all the source of energy produced is used for cell division and expansion.

Additionally, environmental factors can affect plant growth during the day. For example, if the temperatures and humidity are too high, the cells struggle to regulate them, leading to a lot of energy use. This means that there will be less energy left for growth.

– Inactive Mode

Plants do not go to sleep at night, but they are less active. Processes like photosynthesis do not take place due to a lack of light, and there is no temperature regulation. Therefore, more energy is channeled toward cell expansion and division, promoting growth. The stomata also close because there is no transpiration.

Inactive Mode Trees

While light plays a significant role in plant growth, they also need water, nutrients, air, and the correct temperatures. Water transports nutrients from the soil to other plant parts and maintains the plant’s pressure in the cells. Nutrients help with the growth of the cells, and temperature is a requirement for photosynthesis.

Do House Plants Develop Correctly at Night?

Yes, although house plants do not get much sun exposure, they grow during the day and at night. This is due to the way they will be in a mode where they are processing the photosynthesis that took place during the day.

However, when buying, you should get plants that tolerate darkness because outdoor plants cannot get the same amount of sunlight. You can also choose the house plant depending on how well-lit your home is.

Although these plants don’t require too much light, they need enough to photosynthesize. If you have a dark house, you can place the plants near the window or in a nicely lit corner.  Alternatively, you can provide them with a glowing light. However, ensure you check the amount of time your plant requires light exposure not to stop its growth, flowering, or kill it.

Also, light requirements depend on the plant’s growth spurts. For example, plants require more light during the vegetative stage and less during the flowering phase. Therefore, managing the amount of light depending on the plant’s growth cycle is essential.

What Happens When the Plant Has Less Light?

When the plant has less light, it will begin to stretch toward the light in a process called phototropism. It is when the plant tends to reach the source of light in order to grow healthier. This is a stressful process for it because it is searching for light.

What Happens When the Plant Has Less Light

Phototropism is the plant’s directional response to light which causes it to grow towards the source or away from the light. They have a cell elongation hormone called auxin at the tip of the shoots and roots.

Auxin is made by the plant cells in the area that receives a light and uneven distribution of the hormone causes the cells in the area receiving light to bend. This happens because auxin in the plant part moves to the shaded part, causing bending toward the light.

The absence of the sun at night causes the chloroplasts to shrink and close. The flowers and buds also close because there are no active pollinators to support reproduction. Therefore, all the energy initially used by chloroplasts and flowers is directed to cell multiplication, which will stop your worry about what happens to plants at night when there is no sunlight.


– Do Plants Grow During the Day?

Yes, plants develop at night and during the day. During the day, they use light, carbon dioxide, sunlight, and water to photosynthesize. The products of this process are oxygen and glucose, which are converted into energy and help with cell multiplication.

– Do Plants Grow Faster With 24 Hours of Light?

Indoor plants mature faster when provided with artificial light for 24 hours, but it is not advisable. You should keep your lights on for 12 to 18 hours for perfect plant growth so that they respire and convert the energy properly towards their growth.

Because of continuous photosynthesis, plants experience stress when exposed to 24 hours of light. Stress weakens their immunity, and they are likely to get infected by diseases, pests, and insects. The amount of time plants are exposed to light also affects their flowering. For example, long-day plants require a greater photoperiod to flower, and it means they will produce flowers if exposed to longer hours of light—these get flowers during seasons with long days than nights.

Short-day plants require less photoperiod to produce flowers. These bear more flowers during summer and fall when there are short days. It is not ideal to provide these plants with 24 hours of glow lighting.


In this article we talked about the plant’s growth during the night time, and how they will develop due to the absorption of heat that they had during the day. Here, we give you a sum of the points that we have covered, you will find out that:

  • Plants get bigger at night due to respiration which produces energy. They then use the energy for cell multiplication and division, leading to growth.
  • Plants develop at night with the help of the respiration process, which is a metabolic process where plants convert glucose and oxygen into energy, and water and Carbon IV oxide as the by-products.
  • Unlike photosynthesis, respiration occurs at night because it does not require sunlight.
  • Plants develop faster at night because all the energy produced during respiration is used for cell growth

Although house plants do not get direct sunlight, they continue growing. However, you must place your plant near a window seal or in a well-lit corner to mature appropriately.

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