Asthma Friendly Gardens Written by Thomas Leo Ogren
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Make your garden a fun, stress free zone. Be sure to have a few comfortable garden chairs to sit in, and a little table of some sort is always good too. Wind chimes, bird feeders, and birdbaths can add greatly to your enjoyment and cost little. A beautiful, pollen free, allergy free, asthma friendly garden can be just place for healthy children, and a great place for anyone to relax and enjoy great outdoors. For more advice on low allergen gardening, look up allergy free gardening on Internet, or go to your local library and read some books on this new important subject.
Tom Ogren is author of five published books, including: Allergy-free Gardening, Safe Sex in Garden (Ten Speed Press), and What Experts May NOT Tell You About: Growing Perfect Lawn (AOL Time Warner Books). Tom has an MS degree in Agriculture-Horticulture, taught landscape gardening for twenty years, owned and operated two wholesale-retail nurseries, and in northern Minnesota was host of popular Public Radio call-in gardening show, ďTom Ogrenís Wild World of Plants!Ē Tom (Thomas Leo Ogren) has published hundreds of articles on health and gardening. His work has appeared in diverse publications such as South Africaís Veldt and Field, in Womenís Day, Alternative Medicine, Burpee Seed Catalog, Sunset Magazine, Landscape Architecture, Der Spiegel, The London Times, The Seattle Times, The Washington Post, and even Jerusalem Post. He has also made numerous appearances on HGTV and his work was focus of two made for TV documentaries, one by Canadian Discovery Channel. Tom has been interviewed on National Public Radioís Weekend Edition and his groundbreaking research was featured on The CBS Evening News. He is a frequent lecturer for garden clubs, arboretums, civic groups, hospitals, medical groups, Master Gardeners, and professional associations of landscapers, landscape designers, writers, nursery people, arborists, and urban foresters. He has become well known for his fun, high energy, highly informative, unusual and provocative talks. Tom is a member of Professional Landscape Designers Association, and GWA, Garden Writers of America. Unlike many well-published authors, he still tries to answer all of his own email. You can contact Tom through his website, at: www.allergyfree-gardening.com
Notice of Copyright: Copyright Thomas Leo Ogren”
Thomas Ogren is the author of Allergy-Free Gardening, Ten Speed Press. Tom does consulting work on for the USDA, county asthma coalitions, and the American Lung Associations. He has appeared on CBS, HGTV and The Discovery Channel. His book, Safe Sex in the Garden, was published 2003. In 2004 Time Warner Books published his latest: What the Experts May NOT Tell You About: Growing the Perfect Lawn. His website: www.allergyfree-gardening.com
A Dozen Tips for Producing Low Allergy GardensWritten by Thomas Ogren
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6.Diversity is good. Donít plant too much of same thing in your landscapes. Use a wide selection of plants. Lack of diversity often causes over-exposure. Use lots of variety in your gardens. 7.Wild birds are a big plus because they eat so many insects. Plant fruiting trees and shrubs to encourage more birds. Suet also attracts many insect-eating birds. Insect dander causes allergies and birds consume an incredible amount of aphids, whiteflies, scale, and other invertebrate pests. 8.Use pollen-free selections whenever possible. There are many hybrids with highly doubled flowers and in many cases these flowers lack any male, pollen parts. Formal double chrysanthemums, for example, usually have no pollen. Another example would be almost all of erect tuberous begonias. These have complete female flowers, but their male flowers have nothing but petals, making them pollen-free. 9.If you simply must have some high-allergy potential plants in your yard, just because you love them, then watch where you plant them. Donít use any high-allergy plants near bedroom windows or next to patios, well-used walkways, or by front or back doors. Place highest allergy plants as far away from house as possible and downwind of house too. Remember: closer you are to high-allergy tree or shrub, greater is your exposure. 10.Know exact cultivar name of a tree or shrub before you buy it. Donít buy any that are not clearly tagged with correct cultivar (variety) name and Latin, scientific name. Compare exact name of plant with its OPALS/TM allergy ranking. With this scale, 1 is least allergenic, and 10 is most allergenic. Try to achieve a landscape that averages at OPALS #5, or below. 11.If you have a tree or hedge that has high allergy potential and donít want to remove it, consider keeping it heavily sheared so that it will flower less. Boxwood, for example, has allergenic flowers but if pruned hard each year, it will rarely bloom at all. 12.Get involved with your own cityís tree and parks departments, and encourage them to stop planting any more wind-pollinated trees. There are thousands of fine choices of street trees that do not cause any allergies and we should be using these instead. Working together we can make a healthy difference, and weíll all breathe better for our efforts.
*Note, with dioecious plants (separate-sexed) males cause pollen-allergy, and females because they are pollen free, do not. Examples of some of these dioecious plants are: red maple, silver maple, box elder, holly, willow, aspen, cottonwood, poplar, fringe tree, pepper tree, carob tree, Osage orange, mulberry, cedar, juniper, podocarpus, yews, ash, date palms, and even asparagus.
Thomas Ogren is the author of Allergy-Free Gardening, Ten Speed Press. Tom does consulting work on landscape plants and allergies for the USDA, county asthma coalitions, and the Canadian and American Lung Associations. He has appeared on HGTV and The Discovery Channel. His book, Safe Sex in the Garden, was published in 2003. In 2004 Time Warner Books published: What the Experts May NOT Tell You About: Growing the Perfect Lawn. His website: www.allergyfree-gardening.com