How a Healthy Lawn Can Reduce Grass Allergies
Grass pollen is a common trigger for allergies causing symptoms like runny or stuffy nose, itchy eyes and cough. If you think you might be allergic to your lawn, here’s what you should know. Grasses tend to start growing in the early spring. In the late spring and early summer, they release pollen into the air.
Research suggests that some lawn varieties produce more pollen when under stress. You can avoid this by ensuring that your lawn is well maintained which means mowing it regularly and watering it infrequently but deeply.
Why Watering Your Lawn Reduces Allergens
The most important reason you should water your lawn during summer is to ensure it is kept in optimal condition, reducing stress to the plant and therefore reducing pollen production.
How Often Do You Need to Water Your Lawn?
Watering your lawn once a week for at least one hour should be sufficient during the summer months.
By watering deeply and infrequently you encourage stronger root growth, which will increase the resilience and improve the overall condition of your lawn.
What is the Best Time of Day to Water Your Lawn?
Pollen counts are at their highest at mid-day and during the afternoon, making early morning and evening hours more suitable times to spend time in your yard if you suffer from grass allergies.
Watering before the sun has reached its height and after sunset is also more efficient as there is less chance of the water evaporating.
Mowing to Reduce Grass Allergies
Most types of grass release pollen only when they grow tall. The pollen comes from a feathery flower that grows at the top. If you keep your lawn mown, the grass is less likely to get to the point where it is producing flowers and releasing pollen.
How Often Should You Mow and to What Height?
During summer you should generally mow on a weekly to fortnightly basis.
As a general rule, you should not cut more than a third of the plant leaf off at any point in time. Mowing too short weakens the grass plant, making it more susceptible to stress and when grass is stressed it produces more pollens.
Raise your lawn height to at least 30mm for couch lawns. This will help to keep your lawn in much better shape, with less soil exposure and less watering required.
Tips for Mowing Your Lawn When You Suffer from Grass Allergies:
Ideally, if you suffer from allergies, someone else will do the mowing for you. If you must mow the lawn yourself, however, here are some tips for minimising exposure to allergens:
- Wear a mask while mowing to minimise the chances of inhaling pollen and allergens.
- Use a mower with a catcher to contain grass clippings and the disturbed pollen
- Choose a still day during the summer months if possible. Pollen levels are highest on warm, dry, windy days.
- Close the doors and windows when mowing to ensure as little pollen as possible gets into your home.
- Protect your hair, eyes and skin with a hat, sunglasses and long sleeves and pants.
- Clean yourself and remove shoes and outer clothes before coming indoors.
Different varieties of grass are known to release different levels of pollen. If you have any questions on the best way to reduce allergens from your lawn contact Australian Lawn.