Hypoallergenic plants can help

Lucky for those of you with allergies out there, you can enjoy flowers, too. Just follow a few simple steps:

First, look for flowers that have low pollen counts or don’t make pollen at all. That’s because flowering plants (i.e. the male plants) make pollen that can irritate your eyes. The weeping fig and the flowering maple are particularly offending. Look instead for low-pollen plants, such as passionflower or Swedish ivy. HGTV offers some more suggestions for low-pollen plants, or of course, you could avoid pollen altogether and stick with leafy varieties of plants, such as spider plants.

Once you’ve decided which houseplants are best for you, remember that even though they may not affect your allergies, the dust that collects on them might. Because plants are stationary, they can collect dust. It’s a good idea to spray your plants with water or to rinse the leaves in the sink. (Make sure you have proper drainage to avoid root rot, which is — you guessed it — when the roots of the plant rot because of excess moisture.)

You also want to take care to prevent mold growth, which can also exacerbate your allergies. Mold likes to grow in damp, dark places, so make sure your plants are kept in a sunny, well-ventilated place. Also, don’t overwater your plants, and be careful to throw out any dead parts of plants immediately, since mold likes to grow there, too. The Mayo Clinic advises spreading aquarium gravel over the soil of the plants to prevent mold growth as well.

What’s interesting about the lilacs  is that they do not have a significantly high pollen count, but they do have a distinct smell that can be very bothersome to odor-sensitive people, so even if plants seem benign, you might need to test them out in your house first to see if it sets off a reaction in anyone in your household.

Besides the items  mentioned above, you might want to go for the plants that NASA tells us will actually clean the air of harmful chemicals.  Remember, a little greenery can be nice in the spring, especially when it’s been winter for the past eight months, a little greenery indoors is an absolute must. Nature Indoors can help you select the proper plants for your environment.