I am currently preparing the seedlings for next springs growing in my garden. I have created my own green house - in theory with ideal conditions (full spectrum lights, high humidity, 30+°C all the time). However I initially misread that more light is better for plants and for the first 3 weeks essentially gave them light 24/7. This did not go well and after a while the leaves started to crumple from the outer edge. Doing some research I realized that this could be from over exposure to light.

After going on a 12/12 schedule with light/darkness all the new leaves developed perfectly fine and no crumpling happened anymore, so this really was the reason for the crumpling.

Now to my question: Those crumpled leaves are still green and look fine on the seedlings after more than one week. They dont turn yellow or brown, they are just like a badly crumpled up piece of paper. I was wondering: Should I remove those leaves or keep them on the seedlings until they fall off on their own?

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Plants have evolved on earth to grow in two stages during a 24 hour period: first photosynthesis in light and then respiration in darkness. Exposed to continuous light the photosynthesis continues; the respiration being equally important to release gases and continue the second part of the internal chemistry cannot proceed normally in some cases. The result could be an accumulation of waste products or distended cells in the leaves.

Clearly this cannot be true for all types of plants - there are many foliage plants growing in places like offices or airports where they are subjected to 24 hour light and manage to survive quite well with occasional rest periods when they are swapped out for fresher looking decorations.

Now that the plants are on a regular diurnal schedule my suggestion would be to leave the leaves in place - they can do no harm and while they may not correct their odd shape will fall naturally in their turn.

  • It is kind of how permanent training will actually harm muscles and they need some time to recover and rebuild :-) Commented Feb 1, 2021 at 21:22

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