Why Do Plants Need Sugar? Best Ways to Use As Fertilizer

In order for indoor plants to grow for a long time and delight with their splendor and abundant flowering, proper care is necessary. Since the chemicals are harmful to humans, regular sugar can be used as fertilizer.

This natural remedy contains many beneficial substances that enrich the soil and serve as a fertilizer for flowers.

why do plants need sugar

why do plants need sugar?

Plants suffer the most when the amount of sunlight and heat is limited. It is during the cold weather that the development and growth of home flowers slow down. Due to the lack of light, the process of photosynthesis is complicated, and the plant is forced to consume its own hidden reserves.

Sugars are consumed first, so glucose is needed first of all for feeding.

If you organize the watering of flowers correctly with the addition of sugar, then they will grow healthy and strong, despite the coolness and lack of sunlight. BUT! Artificial lighting is also helpful. This will create the illusion of sunny days.

Read also if you want to know about best temperature for indoor plants.

Sugar beneficial substances for plants

When the sugar additive hits the ground, it breaks down into fructose and glucose. Fructose does not penetrate into the structure of the plant, therefore, it works poorly as a fertilizer. And glucose is absorbed by tissues and converted into:

  • lipids;
  • nucleins;
  • proteins;
  • starch;
  • cellulose.

The received energy is enough for plants for active growth and development.

In order for glucose to be better absorbed, flowers at home must be fed with yeast. When they decompose, carbon dioxide is released, which contributes to the correct and complete absorption of glucose.

when to plants need sugar?

Determine the lack of vitamins in crops by the following criteria:

  • slow growth;
  • faded color of stems and leaves;
  • thinness of shoots;
  • prolonged absence of flowering;
  • changing the size of the leaves downward;
  • painful appearance or leaf fall.

Best ways to use sugar on indoor plants as fertilizer

Sugar is used both for watering plants and for spraying on leaves. To prepare the mixture, you need 1 tbsp. l. Dissolve sugar in 1 liter of liquid. For foliar feeding, this solution is diluted with water in a ratio of 1: 2.

Sometimes flower lovers simply sprinkle sugar on the soil and water it abundantly. In this case, fertilizer is applied in a proportion of 1 tsp. (without a slide) for a pot diameter of 10 cm. An increase in the surface requires an additional 0.5 tsp for every 20 cm. sweet fertilizer.

If the diameter of the pot is less than 10 cm, 0.5 teaspoon per 1 liter of water is enough. In this case, it is not worth sprinkling granulated sugar on the ground, because the fertilizer will be absorbed into the soil more slowly, and there is a risk of mold and gnats appearing on the surface.

The water must be taken settled, as for ordinary watering.

In order not to harm the plant, after the first feeding, you should carefully observe the reaction of the flower. If he looks healthy and blooming, then such fertilizer is suitable for him. In case of a negative reaction, you need to find another suitable option.

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Sugar in combination with yeast

Yeast is used to improving the absorption of glucose. When they decay, carbon dioxide is formed.

A sweet yeast mixture is prepared as follows: 1 tsp. sugar is mixed with 1 g of dry yeast, diluted in 1 liter of water. The solution is consumed at the rate of 100 ml per 1 kg of earth.

Such feeding of indoor plants cannot be done often, 1 time per season is enough.

If yeast fungi are used in large quantities, then they absorb potassium and calcium from the soil, which will immediately affect the state of the culture.

It is possible to compensate for the lack of carbon dioxide without yeast by loosening the soil.

The procedure is performed every week. Two days before manipulation, the plant should be watered with plain water so that the soil is not excessively wet or dry.

After loosening, the flower will receive an influx of carbon dioxide and will be able to better absorb glucose.

sugar with Ash addition

Experienced gardeners, along with this additive, introduce wood ash – 5 g per 1 liter of water.

But note that some plants do not tolerate ash well. These include azalea, calla lilies, anthurium, gardenia, cypress. These flowers love acidic soil, and ash alkalizes it.

How often to water indoor plants with sugar?

You need to properly water the plant. High soil moisture can harm the culture: spots appear on the leaves, the stems lose strength. With an excess of sugar or water, the roots rot, the plant dies. Glucose can cause insects to appear, which is also harmful to the flower.

how often to water indoor plants with sugar

Watering with sugar once every 1-2 months is considered normal.

Some gardeners are convinced that topdressing should be applied every week, but skeptics refute this opinion, believing that it is better not to top up than to pour. And there is some truth in this because sugar in large quantities can become a poison for plants.

Do not forget that irregular feeding also affects the condition of the flower. A one-time watering with sugar will only have an effect for a while, and if the procedure is not repeated, then the problems will return again.

For the first time, fertilizer is applied 2 months after planting, when the plant gets stronger and gets used to new conditions.

First, indoor flowers are watered with plain water, and then a small amount of sugar mixture is given. For diseased cultures, the concentration of the solution is halved.

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How to use sugar as fertilizer in indoor plants?

Sugar can be replaced with pharmacy glucose. To do this, dissolve 2 tablets in 1 liter of warm water.

When spraying the finished solution, one should take into account the likelihood of mold appearance, therefore, in addition to glucose, it is necessary to treat the soil with Baikal EM-1 or Vostok EM-1 preparations. These funds will protect the plant from unpleasant consequences.

Refined sugar can replace ordinary granulated sugar.

Phalaenopsis love sugar compresses. To prepare the lotion, dry wipes or a clean cotton cloth are soaked in a sweet spray solution and applied to the leaves.

After 20-30 minutes, the compress can be removed. If there is no time for lotions, then it is enough to wipe the leaves with a cotton pad dipped in the solution.

The fat woman (popularly the money tree) often lacks moisture in the room. To do this, its leaves are sprayed with sugar dressing, which attracts the missing liquid.

Household flowers in pots, even with proper fertilization, must be periodically transplanted into new soil. In this regard, it is worth knowing that the plant needs to be watered with a sugar solution 2 months after the procedure.

If the culture does not take root well in a new place, then feeding is postponed for a longer time. There is no need to rush, it is necessary to allow the root structure to take root in the substrate.

In advanced cases, injections into the stem of the flower are recommended. But this is done in a serious condition, when other methods are ineffective. It is dangerous to bring the plant to this: it can die without waiting for help.

Using sugar as fertilizer in house garden

Sugar dressing is carried out not only indoors, but also for garden flowers. This helps the plant to strengthen the root system, increase the growth of healthy shoots and the flowering period.

The solution for the garden is prepared as follows: dissolve 1 tbsp in 2 liters of boiling water. l. sugar and yeast.

After mixing the fertilizer, the container is left in a warm place for 7 days. 200 g of this mixture is mixed with 10 liters of water and vegetables are fed.

You can apply fertilizer in the garden once a month.

Sugar-loving plants and flowers

Almost all indoor plants tolerate glucose feeding well. Most of all, flowering species need fertilization.

Ficuses, roses, cacti, dracaena, succulents, palms love glucose.

The additive is introduced at any time of the year, especially if the indoor plants are in a room that receives little direct sunlight.

Ficuses love a concentrated solution of 40 g of sugar per 1 liter of liquid.

Cacti are watered with an ordinary solution once every 10-14 days.

For indoor roses, sugar is necessary: ​​it removes the stagnation of liquid in the flower stems. Roses are watered with a solution with the addition of yeast.

Arrowroots are painful plants. Yellow dried leaves indicate improper care. They do not like intensive watering and suffer from decay of the root system. For treatment, a sugar solution is used in their proportions of 1 tsp. for 1 liter of liquid.

Check out why is coffee grounds good for plants?

Houseplants Pro Opinion

Fertilize indoor and garden crops with water and sugar. If the rules for watering are observed, the plants acquire a healthy appearance, since they receive all the necessary vitamins from the split glucose. When watering, it is important to normalize the volume and frequency of fertilization, since an excess can provoke the death of the species.

If ready-made pharmacy glucose is taken as the basis, then you should additionally take care of the soil by treating it with EM preparations (the use of effective microorganisms) in order to reduce the risk of mold.


The use of sugar has a beneficial effect on almost all plants, thanks to its effect, the flowering of indoor crops can be observed at any time of the year.

I am an avid plant enthusiast and horticulture aficionado with a deep passion for houseplants. With years of nurturing green companions, my expertise in caring for indoor foliage is well-rooted. Through my journey, I've cultivated insights into optimal plant care, propagation techniques, and creating vibrant indoor ecosystems. Join me as we explore the verdant world of houseplants together. Let's turn your living space into a thriving oasis of botanical beauty. Connect with me on admin@houseplantspro.com and Facebook and explore more at Houseplantspro. 🌿🪴