Itchy eyes, a runny nose and pollen counts getting higher is a sure sign summer – and hay fever season – is here. It can be a nightmare for sufferers, and especially those who love nothing more than getting out in the garden and enjoying the great outdoors.
Pollination is an essential part of plant reproduction and the life cycle of species.
But adding a few low pollen varieties to the garden could ease hay fever symptoms for sufferers and allow for a blooming, colourful garden to enjoy.
I’ve put together some of my favourite low pollen plants for Britons to consider.
Roses have a beautifully sweet scent and are very low in pollen. The small amount of pollen that roses produce is too heavy to be airborne, making them a good option for anyone with flower allergies. There is a rose for every type of garden.
They are easy to grow, will work in most soil types and come in a variety of forms – shrub roses, climber, ramblers and patio roses. Do your homework to get the right rose for your garden and you will be rewarded with beautiful blooms for years.
These easy to grow, glossy evergreens produce bright blooms that come in whites, pinks, and reds. Camellias have both their male and female reproductive organs on the same flower, meaning their pollen doesn’t travel far for pollination, making them a good option for hay fever sufferers.
Camellias thrive in moist but well drained acidic soil and like a sheltered spot in partial shade. They flower from late winter to early spring bringing interest and colour to the garden when little else is in bloom.
If you’re growing these in pots, plant from now until late autumn – just remember to water regularly.
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Geraniums are simple, five-petaled flowers that allergy sufferers can enjoy in a variety of colours, including pink, white, red, purple, and blue.
These popular bedding plants will bring instant colour and fragrance to your garden during the summer months. Easy to grow geraniums will create a wonderful display in pots on your patio or in flower beds.
They will need regular watering if they’re grown in pots. If they’re in the ground, they’ll need very little unless it’s a particularly dry period.
Shade loving hostas are low maintenance plants which require very little care and will grow year after year in the garden.
Pollen isn’t windborne, making them a good choice for allergy sufferers. There is a huge range to choose from with different leaf shapes, sizes and colours so aim to match to your overall planting scheme and the conditions in your garden.
Most will thrive in moist soil in light to medium shade.
Most fruit trees are pollinated by insects and not via wind, meaning they are less likely to irritate allergy sufferers.
They provide lots of interest throughout the year too – blossom in the Spring, a bumper crop of fruit during the summer and glorious autumn colour.
Apples, cherries and plums are all good to grow if you’re designing a low pollen garden.
Chris Bonnett is a gardening expert at GardeningExpress.co.uk.
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