Use low allergen plants (see Ogren Plant Allergy Scale).
Plant female trees and shrubs (they do not produce pollen).
Avoid the use of plants that have strong fragrances, such as jasmine, lavender, peppermint, and roses.
Avoid or minimize lawn/turf areas to reduce mowing emissions and chemical usage.
Use low growing fine fescue, buffalo grass, or other turf grass which requires little or no mowing.
Use a wide variety of plant materials.
Group plants with similar water and cultural needs.
Do not crowd plants.
Leave gaps in groundcover to create less hospitable habitat for pests.
Plant deciduous shade trees on the south and west sides of buildings. The shade reduces interior temperatures and reduces A/C usage during summer months.
Use low or no VOC paints, stains and finishes on outside equipment including benches, poles, decks, and other outdoor equipment. (see recommendations from Building Products & Materials group)
Avoid organic mulches (cocoa beans, peat moss, bark, wood chips) as they emit volatile fumes and may harbor mold.
Avoid railroad ties as they contain creosote.
Utilize stone, clay, concrete, and other hard, non-volatile materials to create borders and frame gardens.