Q: Will my houseplants be affected if I put film on my window to filter out UV light that is causing our new furniture to fade? --Matt McGilvary, Chicago A: Your houseplants might notice, but they shouldn't be adversely affected if you use a clear filter that screens only ultraviolet light. Some of your plants might appreciate the extra help. Plants, like people who sunburn, are at risk of damage caused by UV radiation. This means plants have also evolved protective measures -- often red-colored pigments in tissue known as flavonoids -- that absorb radiation. (These same flavonoids, when eaten in fruits and vegetables, are powerful antioxidants).
Robin Carlson, Chicago Botanic Garden
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