Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
Other Sellers on Amazon
+ $3.99 shipping
+ $3.75 shipping
+ $7.06 shipping
The Allergy-Fighting Garden: Stop Asthma and Allergies with Smart Landscaping Paperback – February 17, 2015
|New from||Used from|
"Rebound" by Kwame Alexander
Don't miss best-selling author Kwame Alexander's "Rebound," a new companion novel to his Newbery Award-winner, "The Crossover," illustrated with striking graphic novel panels. Learn more
Customers who bought this item also bought
Customers who viewed this item also viewed
"Should be on the shelf of every serious gardener....Ogren has made a valuable contribution to our good health, and now it is up to us to put the information to work." --David A. Stadtner, MD, from the foreword
About the Author
THOMAS LEO OGREN has a master’s degree in agricultural science and is the creator of the Ogren Plant Allergy Scale (OPALS), a plant-allergy ranking system now used by the United States Department of Agriculture. He is a horticulturist and allergy researcher as well as a former landscape gardening instructor, nursery owner, and gardening radio show host. He lives in San Luis Obispo, California.
Top customer reviews
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
I learned from the book that in the 1950's few people had severe allergies, but today asthma is the #1 chronic disease in children in the U.S. Tom explains how we created the problem -- yes, it is man-made. Originally, landscapers used plants propagated by seed, so there were more-or-less equal numbers of male and female. New discoveries allowed growers to produce separate-sexed plants, so they could choose one or the other. As you know, my dear gardening friends, the male produces pollen, the female produces fruit. As the female plants are the messy ones, the USDA recommended only male trees should be planted in towns and cities to reduce the amount of litter on sidewalks. Therefore, less mess, but 10,000 times more pollen than when both male and female were planted. Making it worse, not only do female plants produce no pollen, they trap and remove pollen from the air. The problem was further exacerbated when the trees lost through Dutch Elm Disease were replaced with male trees.
Tom suggests you evaluate your existing plants. He does a good job of explaining perfect (bisexual) flowers, monoecious (single sexed) and dioecious (unisexual), suggesting ways you can determine the sex of a plant, giving several examples of each. An earlier book of Tom's has the attention-grabbing title, Safe Sex. It's a great title now we know the link between the sex of the plant and its power to cause or prevent allergies.
In one section of the book, Tom discusses eliminating allergy-causing mold spores with such considerations as mulches, airflow, and sunlight. He advocates IPM and avoiding insecticides and fungicides ... in my case this is 'preaching to the choir.' As well as advice on home landscaping, Tom shows how we can fight allergies in neighborhoods and cities by writing letters and sending emails. He draws attention to the concern about pollen in our school yards. In addition, he points out that the push to 'plant more trees' has no regard for the allergy problem.
The most important part of the book for me is the A - Z listing of allergy-fighting plants. Tom has developed the Ogren Plant Allergy Scale or OPALS. This is a numerical scale ranking such factors as amount of pollen produced, potency of the pollen, how long in bloom, size of pollen grains, etc. It is a 1 - 10 scale with one being the least allergenic. Each plant is ranked against other plants of the same type (obviously, a tree with a high rank will be worse than a perennial with a high rank, because of size.) The A - Z plant list is very comprehensive with cross-references, so you can find a plant when you only know the common name. Each A - Z plant description gives growing conditions and other information as well as its ranking. Finally, the book has an excellent glossary, recommended reading list, list of useful websites, a pollen calendar, and a USDA Plant Hardiness Zone Map.
Tom sent me a free iBook in return for an honest review. I purchased a hard copy from Amazon, because I need to take the book with me for reference when I go to the garden center to make my new plant purchases. Some companies have started using OPALS labels, but many have not.
I highly recommend this important book for gardeners, landscapers, and anyone concerned with allergies. It is a fascinating subject of interest to all.
He knows the allergen propensity of virtually every common plant. Fifteen years ago Tom spotted a full-grown Podocarpus gracilior, a fern pine that is one of the back bone plants of modern landscaping nearby the door of my home office. I was having to take antihistamines every time I went to work. Tom told me to get rid of the Podocarpus. I no longer needed the heavy dose of antihistamines. Since then I am a total convert to Allergy Free Gardening, the title of Tom’s first book which premiered OPALS, the rating scale for plants based on the virility of their pollen. Liz and I re-landscaped our gardens with highly beneficial results.
His understanding of the history of plants and landscaping is unsurpassed. We can learn a great deal from the planting practices of earlier peoples. Tom points out that California’s Franciscan missionaries knew not to plant the ubiquitous olive groves to near residential areas. A lot of sneezing was avoided 150 years before Kleenex and antihistamines.
We are giving of copy of The Allergy-Fighting Garden to our landscape gardener, just as we have with each of Tom’s books. Readers and listeners who’ve heard Tom Ogren will want to do the same.