Pollen, an Unexpected Bright Spot This Spring

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Hayden Creech, Staff Writer

With the magnolia and dogwood blossoms that have been brightening our last two weeks comes the large amounts of pollen that characterize spring. However, this year might be one of the best for people with heavy spring allergies.

The sheets of yellow that appear on my windshield each morning came as quite a surprise to me. However, the bright yellow pollen comes from pine trees and isn’t the type that aggravates our allergies. Visible pollen is usually too large to enter our nasal passages, it is only the smaller pollen from grasses and flowers that sneaks in. Typically, the pollen count is at its worst between 5 and 9am and is only high later in the day if lots of wind is present. Most of us aren’t out and about early in the morning to encounter airborne pollen, but if you are, be sure to wear your mask. While it won’t completely prevent pollen from entering your system, masks are expected to significantly reduce allergy symptoms.

This year has been a rough one, but at least there is a small bright spot in our spring. This spring will be better than last, even if it’s just because we will encounter less macrogametophytes (the cells that make up pollen).

 

Photo Credits: BBC