Gardening

Tuesday, August 30, 2005

The Allergy Sufferers' Guide to Gardening

Dean offers the following advice for gardening enthusiasts to help them get down and dirty in the garden, while minimizing their allergy symptoms: 

Check the Pollen Count -- Avoid gardening between 5:00 and 10:00 a.m., when pollen levels are at their highest. Visit www.benadrylusa.com daily to check the pollen count in your local area.

What’s the Weather? -- Avoid spending time in the garden when it is windy outside. The wind stirs up pollen and spreads it throughout the garden, which can exasperate your allergies.

Arm Yourself -- Allergy sufferers should have a proven effective medicine, such as Benadryl Allergy, on hand to relieve their worst symptoms like sneezing, coughing, itchy and watery eyes, runny nose and itchy throat.

Protect Yourself -- Wearing a mask and protective goggles when gardening will help protect your mouth and eyes from coming in contact with allergens in the air, such as tree, weed and grass pollens.

Use the Right Plants -- Avoid using plants that have small flowers; they tend to produce more pollen. Try using tulips, begonias, roses or daffodils. Refrain from using male trees and shrubs in your garden since they are the only sex that produces pollen. Consult your local gardening shop to determine if a plant is male or female.

Water Frequently -- Regularly water the garden’s soil to keep allergens from rising. Also, replace straw with black plastic mulch, rocks or gravel.

Wash Away Allergens -- After spending time in the garden, be sure to thoroughly rinse your hands, clothes and hair. Allergens from outside can easily be carried into your home continuing to aggravate your allergies.
 
 

More about your lawn...

Lawn Secrets from the Mow Master

 

Q: It’s hot! Besides regulating my watering, is there anything special I should be doing this summer?
-- Lawn Lover

A: While using fertilizer is most important in the spring and fall, warm-season grass, such as Bermuda, thrives in hot weather and would benefit from a summer feeding. With enough water, the grass will be encouraged to grow, causing it to eat more and requiring you to keep more fertilizer on hand. But if your lawn is dormant because of a drought, there’s no need to feed.

As for mowing, remember that different types of grass require different cutting heights. Cool-season grasses should be cut at 3 1/2 inches, while warm-season grasses are cut at 2 inches. Always follow the One-Third Rule and cut only the top one-third of the grass plant. And even though it’s hot, continue to dress safely for mowing: Wear long pants, a tucked-in shirt and good shoes with lots of traction. Some riding mowers are even designed for you to easily attach a shade canopy or an oscillating fan to protect you from the sun and heat. Make sure to drink plenty of water and rest frequently so you stay healthy along with your lawn.
 

From   http://www.theonlineportal.com/gardening/

 

Lawn Secrets

Lawn Secrets from the Mow Master

(ARA) - Whether there’s midseason drought or a family vacation, keep your lawn green and healthy this summer with advice from John Deere’s “Mow Master” Bill Klutho. 

 

Q: We’re planning our vacation, but what can I do to prepare my lawn?
-- Leaving My Lawn Alone

A: Before you leave town, John Deere recommends you water deeply so the moisture gets down 6 to 8 inches -- that’ll protect your lawn from the sun. Give your lawn a fresh mow with a higher cutting height. That will shade the soil and help hold the moisture in. When you get back, set the mower at its highest cutting height in order to follow the One-Third Rule. Enjoy your vacation, and your lawn will be waiting for you when you return.
 

Bug repellent when you are in your garden.

The Best Bug Repellent is All-Natural


(ARA) – If you’ll be spending any time outdoors during the summer months, there are two precautions you need to take -- put on sunscreen to protect yourself and your kids from the damaging rays of the sun, and bug spray to keep biting insects at bay.

Most bug sprays on the market today are safe when used as directed, but Allen Jones, spokesman for Bite Blocker, an all-natural bug spray, points out serious problems with insect repellants that contain DEET, a chemical bug repellent developed 50 years ago by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) for the Army. “The federal EPA claims it’s safe when used as directed, yet most people are unaware of the problems sprays containing DEET can cause and simply use it as needed any way. They don’t take the time to read the warnings in small print on the label, and the label doesn’t explain the problems over exposure can cause. That should send up a red flag. I’d much rather use a repellent that is safe to apply as needed rather than as directed.”