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Pros & Cons of Indoor UV Lights for Plants

Indoor UV Light

Not all of us are blessed with living in houses or flats that get plenty of natural sunlight throughout the day. Fortunately, it’s not all gloom and doom because you can make up for the lack of natural sunlight by installing an indoor UV light setup. In this article, we discuss some of the pros and cons to having such a setup at home.

Benefits of Indoor UV Lights

Before we go into the benefits, let’s first clarify what UV light is. Shortened for ultraviolet light, it’s a type of electromagnetic radiation that comes from the sun. UV light can be broken into three sections of wavelengths. They are UVA (400nm-315nm), UVB (315nm-280nm), and UVC (280nm-100nm). Of the three, UVC is the one that isn’t required by plants. UVC doesn’t make it to earth’s surface so what you need to focus on is UVA and UVB.

UVA and UVB may offer a number of benefits to plants, although how much benefit would also depend on the type of plant. UVA, for example, may be good for plants as it can help increase plant yield. It may also help increase the level of nutrients in the plant, which would make home-grown vegetables and fruits taste a lot better. UVB may also help by increasing the net plant photosynthesis in several plant species.

Downsides of Indoor UV Lights

Too high of a dose can do more harm than good for indoor plants. UVB, for example, may alter the DNA of certain plant species if the plant is exposed to it for too long. When shopping around for an indoor UV light, you will want to consider a number of factors to find a unit that best suits your needs.

As a starting point, you will want to get an indoor UV light that captures a wide spectrum of wavelengths (excluding UVC). Red light, for example, has a wavelength of around 630 to 660nm and it’s known to help processes like blooming and fruiting. Blue light, on the other hand, has a lower wavelength of about 460nm and it’s known to boost photosynthesis. In addition to this consideration, you should also estimate the electrical usage ahead of time.