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How Much Sunlight Does Chinese Lantern Plant Need?

Updated: June 19, 2022

Chinese lantern plants, also known as Physalis alkekengi, are a beautiful addition to any garden. They have bright orange lantern-shaped pods that enclose the fruit and add a pop of color to your landscape. However, one of the most important factors in caring for these plants is understanding how much sunlight they need.

Sunlight Requirements

Chinese lantern plants require full sun to partial shade. This means that they need at least 6 hours of direct sunlight each day, but they can also thrive in areas with some shade. If you live in an area with extremely hot summers, it’s best to provide some afternoon shade to prevent the plant from getting too stressed.

Growing Conditions

When it comes to growing Chinese lantern plants, it’s essential to provide them with rich, well-drained soil. These plants prefer soil that is slightly acidic and moist but not waterlogged. If you’re planting them in an area with heavy clay soil, consider adding compost or sand to improve drainage.

Chinese lantern plants are also quite hardy and can tolerate a wide range of temperatures. They can survive in USDA hardiness zones 3-9, which means they can tolerate temperatures as low as -30°F (-34°C) in the winter.

Watering Requirements

When it comes to watering Chinese lantern plants, it’s important not to overdo it. These plants prefer soil that is kept consistently moist but not waterlogged. Overwatering can lead to root rot and other diseases.

It’s best to water your Chinese lantern plant deeply once a week, especially during hot summer months. If you’re experiencing a particularly dry spell, you may need to water more often.


Pruning is an essential part of caring for Chinese lantern plants. These plants can become quite tall and leggy if left unpruned, so it’s best to trim them back in the spring to encourage bushier growth.

You can also deadhead your Chinese lantern plant throughout the growing season to encourage more blooms. Simply snip off the spent flowers with a pair of sharp scissors.

Common Problems

Chinese lantern plants are relatively easy to care for, but they can be susceptible to a few common problems. One of the most common issues is powdery mildew, which is a fungal disease that can cause a white, powdery coating on the leaves.

To prevent powdery mildew, it’s important to provide good air circulation around your Chinese lantern plant. You can also spray the leaves with a solution of baking soda and water to help control the disease.

Another problem that can affect Chinese lantern plants is spider mites. These tiny pests can cause yellowing leaves and webbing on the plant. To control spider mites, you can spray your plant with neem oil or insecticidal soap.


Can I grow Chinese lantern plants in containers?

Yes, Chinese lantern plants can be grown in containers as long as they have enough room to spread out their roots. Make sure the container has good drainage and use a high-quality potting mix.

When should I fertilize my Chinese lantern plant?

It’s best to fertilize your Chinese lantern plant in the spring when new growth begins. Use a balanced fertilizer with equal parts nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium.

How long do Chinese lantern plants live?

Chinese lantern plants are perennial and can live for many years if cared for properly. With proper care, these plants can live for up to 20 years.

In conclusion, Chinese lantern plants are a beautiful addition to any garden and are relatively easy to care for. By providing them with the right amount of sunlight, water, and nutrients, you can enjoy their bright orange pods year after year.

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