How to Check the Sun Exposure in your Garden

Although I have been doing this for many years, I still worry about my sun conditions. To be a great gardener you have to know everything there is to know…about your garden. You need to know about the condition of your soil, you have to know just the right amount to water and then you have to know all about the sun…which you can’t control, no matter how you try…Until now.

You still can’t control the sun, but you can know where it shines the brightest and where it doesn’t. This type of accurate sun knowledge will help you make smarter choices and will guarantee that what you plant will grow!

I’m going to tell you about a cool little gadget that I found called the Sun Stick. For under $10.00, you can have this neat little sun detector. All you have to do is affix one of the stickers to the center of the sun stick and place it in the place that you need sun information. Stick it in the ground; leave it for at least 8 hours. When you return, the emulsion in the center of the sticker will have changed color. The color will tell you everything you need to know.  The little color-coded strip that comes in the kit will let you know whether you have full sun, partial sun, full shade or partial shade. This simple information may change your life or, at least your gardening life.

Luckily, I was right. The place that I grow all of my vegetables has, according to the sun stick, full sun.  Near my pond, I also have full sun, which is great because that’s where my perennials are planted.

I checked another area where there are only partial sun conditions which will make my next trip to the garden store much easier.

Lastly I went to look at an area that I had already envisioned growing grape.

Uh-Oh, the sun stick says that in that area I only have full shade. Not good news.

I don’t recommend that you are as stubborn as I tend to be…so, I’m going to try it anyway. But if it doesn’t work, at least I’ll know it’s not the fault of the grapes.