A morning sweating in your garden is really enjoying until you have a runny nose or itchy eyes. Some people also suffer from headaches or fever. These are common symptoms of allergy- the worst nightmare of every gardener.
Garden lovers having allergies don’t have to give up this wonderful pastime. Here’re some useful tips to create an asthma-friendly garden.
1) Pick the plants wisely
Selecting suitable plants for your gardens is really important. Some plants pose much higher trigger for allergy- suffers.
It is advisable to choose insect-pollinated plants instead of wind-pollinated. They usually produce less pollen into the atmosphere, therefore they reduce the risk of allergies. Big, bright-colored flowers should be on the list because they often attract bees and other insects.
If you are in love with some high-pollen plants, put them in the corners or at the back of the garden as you have less chance to touch them.
2) Pay attention to windows
Close your windows while gardening to keep pollen and dust out of your house. Also, you should not grow climbing plants on bedroom windows.
If possible, limit placing plants around the window area. Dust and pollen may sweep into the house by strong winds.
3) Mow the lawn
Feathery flower at the top of grass is the main source of pollens. Keep the cut short- under 2 inches, before it produces flower on the top. It is vital to keep them well watered. Water can wash away a large amount of dust or pollen.
Allergy sufferer should not be responsible for mowing the lawn. Ask for help from a non-allergy friends or family members. Hiring someone is also a good idea to protect yourself. And it does not cost much.
4) Watch over your pets
Dogs and cats really enjoy playing around the garden. However, pollen may easily stick to their coat and come into the house. Try to keep your cats or dogs outside. If you cannot, wash your pets before they come indoors.
5) Avoid direct smelling
Flowers with sweet fragrance can make you suffer from sneezing. The stronger the scent is, the more likely you get allergy. Fortunately, you do not need to eliminate these sweet flowers in your garden. But be sure not to inhale their fragrance directly
6) Cover your body
Gardening clothes and boots are extremely important to keep pollen off your skin.
Your eyes may get itchy when they contact with pollen. Wear sunglasses to help shield the eyes. The best sunglasses are the dark one wrapping around to stop pollen entering into the eyes.
Those who have allergy need to wear a designated mask for further protection. To optimize the benefit, gardeners can choose masks with respirators on two sides of their face.
Don’t forget a big hat. Your hair may keep a lot of dust, spores, and pollens for very long time.
7) Wash after gardening
The stubborn pollen can stick to every part of your body. Without a thorough wash, this unpleasant thing falls from your body into your bed at night. Gradual exposure to dust and pollens will soon trigger allergy flare-ups.
So, do not forget to wash your hair carefully as a lot of dust and pollens may trap there. Wash your hands many times and rinse your eyes with water. Also, wash your nose with saline nasal rinse! It will let the allergens out of your nose.
Do not line your clothes during peak pollen seasons. Dry your clothes instead to minimize the allergy threats.
8) Check pollen count
Pollen count broadcast will help you to choose the right time for gardening. Limit outdoors time when the count is high or during pollination period. Usually, pollen levels tend to be at the highest from 5 a.m. to 10 p.m.
You should not work hard on gardens when the sun shines brightly. Take advantage of cloudy, gloomy day, especially after the rain. Rain helps to wash away pollen from the air, so the allergy risk is lower.
The pollen count is also very high in spring afternoons and early mornings in autumn. Stay indoors as much as possible!
9) Stay away from chemicals
Sprays such as herbicides and insecticides contain tons of harmful chemicals. It is bad for health, and even worse for those who suffer from an allergy.
It is a huge plus to make friends with natural or organic products. “Green” alternatives are good for you, your plants and the environment. Go for it!
10) Capture home pollen
The truth is, we cannot remove all the pollens in our homes no matter how hard we try. A good-quality air purifier helps to eliminate impurities in your home, including pollen. Some air purifiers can capture up to 99.9 % of pollens moving through them.
Some air conditioner can act as an air purifier to capture most of the allergens such as dust, mold, or pollens. Keep air conditioner filters clean. Replace filter when needed.
Hope these tips will help you remove the burden of allergy and experience the pleasure of gardening to the fullest.