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Ultraviolet Light (UV) – Is It Good or Bad For Your Plants?

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Introduction

If you’ve ever grown plants, or are considering starting, you may have seen or heard  ‘ultraviolet light mentioned. 

The first time I tried farming, I became aware of the Ultraviolet (UV) lights and their relationship with plants.

Uv lights are becoming increasingly popular and many plant growers take part in UV lighting every time. What with different wavelengths that are vital for plant growth- flowering,  vegetables, reddening of your crops.

Hover UV in plant invites debates in plants- plants enthusiasts claim it is good for plants, other claims it has no impacts. 

So, if you care about getting good plants, redder, vibrant, etc e. In this article, we will look at what UV lights are, their uses, and how good or bad they are to your plants.

light stabilizers
light stabilizers

What are the Sources of UV?

There are two sources of UV lights:

  • Natural – the sun
  • Man-made – lamps

Sun

The sun is the major source of UV light. It is only a small portion of the different types of UV that hit the ground -95% of UVA and 5% of UVB rays. 

The intensity of UV that reaches us depends on.

  • Time day -The Uv lights are powerful between 10 am and 4 pm
  • Season of the year- this is apparent in the Northern hemisphere- it is stronger during summer and spring.
  • Distance from the equator- it declines as you move away from the equator
  • Altitude- elevated ground receive more UV
  • Clouds-varying effect by clouds
  • Reflection – UV bounces of services,  like water and snow that leads to an increase in exposure.
  • Atmosphere –  ozone layer blocks UV radiation

Artificial Lights 

Apart from natural sources, a small portion of UV comes from man-made sources. 

For example, in lamps, the  UV output is as follows: 

  • 1 percent from fluorescent
  • 3 percent for metal halide 
  • 6 percent for mercury vapor lamps 
  • High-pressure sodium lamps 
  • And Light Emitting Diodes (LEDs) 

Is UV Required by Life on Earth?

Uv Light
Uv Light

The UV light comes in 3 different segments as follows:

  • UV-A 
    • Invisible to human eyes
    •  Longest wavelengths 
    • 315 to 400 nm
    • Least energetic 
    • Passes through the ozone layer  
    • Most abundant form of UV 
  • UV-B 
    • 280 to 315 nm 
    • Absorbed by the ozone layer
    • A key part of life
  • UV-C 
    • 100 to 280 nm 
    • Most dangerous to people and plants.
    • Absorbed by the Ozone layer
    • Not present on earth

UV Application in Our Life

UV light finds a wide application in our life. It makes our life,  

  • Comfortable
  • Healthier
  • And safer

UV is used for industrial and medical purposes. For example, It is used for 

  • Surface disinfection,
  • Reduces pollutants in water and air.

The UV radiation represents total solar radiation reaching the earth but is highly energetic. This means that UV can cause reactions between molecules that are hit by such reactions.

And what is good with it? It is environmentally friendly, unlike chemicals. 

But wait…there’s more.

Are you about to undertake a new crop production or protection project? If so, It is worth knowing which types of textile protection plastics are more susceptible to degradation 

And why is this?

If your crop protection project is to run smoothly it is essential to use  UV stabilized netting and tarpaulin covers.

So is UV Good for Your Plants?

Yes, especially if you understand how to use these UV lights in their correct amount.

The UV is beneficial to your plants. The UV changes the DNA of fungi that are known to be harmful. It also, boost your plant color and nutrient level.

UVA is excellent. exposure to plants leads to strong and beautiful plants that are susceptible to fungus.  Other goods brought by UV light include:

  • Improves the appearances and tastes of fruits and vegetables
  • UV is used by insects in finding flowers.

 If the inside of a greenhouse is completely deficient in UV, both pollinators and pests may have a difficult time locating flowers.

Research also has shown that plants are grown with UV generally have less insect feeding on leaves and are less vulnerable to fungal pathogens compared to plants grown with little or no UV

Is UV Bad for Your Plants?

There are plenty of benefits when using UV light when growing your plants.

But is there any chance UV light can be harmful to your plants?

Some types of UV light for example tanning lamps are dangerous to your plants. And what’s more, it may lead to low yields. 

UV effects on crops include:

  • Inhibition of extension growth leading to shorter stems and leaves 
  • Improvement of leaf thickness 
  • And more leaf coloration, for example, red leaf lettuce, fountain grass, and millet.

How Much UV Light Do Plants Need?

Before you buying UV lamps for your plants, understand that their requirements.

You are likely to get good results with 2 to 3 watts of UV light in a square foot of space for growing. 

For example, you will get 32 to 48 watts of UV lighting for a 4×4 inch tent to yield the benefits.

You Need To Stay Safe from UV Light

UV light may not be harmful to your plants but it can be harmful to you.

Man-made UV can be damaging to your skin than the sun because you are closer to it.

So, always take precautions for your eyes. Just wear protective eyeglasses on your UV lights.

Another recommended way is to wear sleeves if you are going to work around your lights.

Potential of UV in Plants

There are emerging opportunities to use UV radiation for example UV-A in greenhouses and vertical farms to

  •  Produce your crops with specific attributes
  • Suppress fungal pathogens
  • Increase leaf coloration and thickness 
  • Making plants resistant to environmental stresses and pests. 

But how do we determine how to deliver the UV to plants? For example

  •  Radiation source 
  • Intensity and duration to stimulate the desired responses
  • Correct dose

Well, this and much more are extremely important.

Conclusion 

Ultraviolet light can be good and bad for your plants depending on how you use it. 

The innovations driving crop protection textile that can withstand harsher conditions make use of UV in their products.

That what we are here for

Our team at EyouAgro specializes in quality products that are UV  stabilized and resistant

if you have queries about UV stabilized products email [email protected] or visit their website at www.eyouagro.com.

Kevin Lyu
The Author >>
Kevin Lyu
Hey, I’m Kevin Lyu, the founder of Eyouagro.com , Family-run business
An expert of agriculture protection textile specialist .
In the past 24 years, we have helped 55 countries and 150+ Clients like farms, orchards , vineyards to protect their plants. The purpose of this article is to share with the knowledge related to agriculture growing protection for making the plant healthier and stronger.
We are at your disposal for any technical or commercial information

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