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Full Sun Potted Plants

Windows or outdoor areas getting a lot of sun easily welcome some crops and can kill or stunt others. Only plants that tolerate — even love — glowing light can thrive in a full-sun area. Pick wisely when dressing your glowing spots and the crops will reward you with their health and energy.

Sun Tolerance

A sunny window or window might seem like a perfect place to show a favorite potted plant, however when that plant cannot tolerate full sun, you’ll fight a losing struggle. Plants that need full sun grow fuller with more robust foliage if put in bright light. Windows or outdoor spots receiving southern exposure offer the most intense light for these plants. Garden centers can offer advice, and lots of plants come labeled with directions, including mild tolerance.

Flowering Plants

Bright and cheery with many varieties and colors, geraniums (Pelargonium x hortorum) develop easily in pots or containers, requiring full sun for the best vitality. Most frequently an annual, they live well to Zone 10, however they’ll grow inside over winter in a sunny place. Opt for a less clear flowering plant to fill your sunny place with a white bird of paradise (Strelitzia nicolai), which thrives in full sun. The plants likely will not produce flowers indoors, but they’ll grow tall and compact near a sunny window.

Foliage Plants

A bright, sunny place cries out for a nutritious leaf plant, and sweet potato vine (Ipomoea batatas) fits the bill with its glowing, yellow-green leaves. Complete sun brings out the deepest color within this annual plant, which will trail out of a container for a stunning look. Other varieties come with dark purple or pale green and pink foliage. Try a ponytail palm (Beaucarnea recurvata), an impressive foliage container plant that thrives in complete or indirect sun. In case you’ve got the room for this particular plant that can grow six to 18 feet tall, it can make an impression in a sunny room or outdoor terrace. Ponytails originated in Mexico, so they thrive in sunny, arid conditions.


Spice up both your glowing place and your cooking by growing herbs in pots. As long as temperatures remain below 90 degrees F. in summer, many herbs thrive in full sun. Follow directions that come with seeds or bedding plants for proper preparation and pot size to ensure your potted herbs grow well. A few to try at a sunny place include chamomile, thyme, tarragon, chives, dill and parsley.

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