Of all the coronavirus lockdown pastimes that have been picked up, gardening is one that has incredible benefits for mind, body and soul. But if you are one of the UK’s 13 million hay fever sufferers, the garden is a challenging place.
However, with a little forethought and planning, you can equip yourself with the , and enjoy the garden without the pollen count getting up your nose. We’ll show you how to have an allergen-free garden this summer.
A neglected lawn will be rife with lawn flowers and grass pollen, so keeping it mowed and short will instantly reduce the pollen in the air.
Pollen levels always peak in the morning, as the sun warms the day, and again in the evening, as the air cools again, so get the best out of your garden in the early afternoon. Stick to gardening between 12 pm and 4 pm.
Different flowers can have different months for blooming, so considered planting can give your garden a long-lasting visual impact, as well as supporting biodiversity.
Compost bins can be a source of mould spores, which are finer than pollen, and can reach deeper into the respiratory system. Always wear gloves if composting, keep the bins covered, and make sure any garden seating is well away from the bins or other allergenic pollen sources.
As a general rule, plants and flowers that are good for bees and insects are good for us too. Insect-pollinated plants are often bell, funnel, or trumpet-shaped, meaning insects have to probe inside to reach the pollen. It’s worth prioritising these blooms above others.
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