A sunny afternoon of gardening, or relaxing outdoors beneath your favourite tree with a book, can be a nice way to spend your free time – giving you the opportunity to get away from the hustle and bustle, or the stresses of work. Unfortunately though, if you are an allergy sufferer you will know that this is often not an easy thing to do without paying the consequences. This however doesn’t have to be the case – just because you suffer from allergies doesn’t mean that you can’t enjoy your plant filled garden. With a bit of thought about what you are planting, and some advice from us you will be able to create a garden that doesn’t make you go running for the tissues or the antihistamine tablets.
Choose a mix of plants for balance and remember that the lower the OPALS ratings the lower the risk of triggering your pollen allergy. One undeniable truth, male plants have pollen, females don’t. We have been trialling female plants for pollen-trap hedging and pollen-trap standalone shrubs. To date, we have as stock plants, 30 different cultivars, all suitable as pollen breaks/traps around your property and in your borders. As an example, Laurus nobilus “Guernsey Girl” epitomises the essential characteristics necessary in creating an allergy friendly garden. It’s evergreen, provides much needed shelter for wildlife in winter, cleans air pollutants 12 months of the year, good for pollinators, no pollen but rich in nectar. It is also extremely resilient and drought tolerant.
A well balanced allergy friendly garden will have plants rich with pollen, the difference is allergenic pollen will be trapped inside the flower, not outside the flower where a gust of wind can blow it into your eyes, nose, and mouth. Pollinators are happy and you’re happy – an allergy friendly garden is win win win for everyone.
A study published in the journal Atmospheric Environment shows that low hedges reduce the impact of pollution. Find out more: Click Here
We have plants of Pittosporum, Griselinia, Coprosma, Laurus and Holly all females. Combined they make an attractive hedge, good for pollinators and wildlife with the bonus of trapping pollution and pollen.
Here is a short video clip from our friend, allergy friendly plant pioneer, and creator of the OPALS rating system Tom Ogren: