Oh joy, oh bliss! Spring is finally in the air! Bulbs are forcing themselves through the cold ground and plants are getting ready to return to life. Do you know what that means?
It’s time for spring allergies to kick in. Groan…
For those of you who suffer from spring allergies, the reprieve you may have gotten from last week’s freak snow didn’t last. The thermometer is shaking off those negative digits and has climbed back to more spring-like temperatures. This means that trees will shortly unfurl their leaves and start to blossom. Thus begins the season of spring allergies.
In fact, a quick check in with the Weather Network confirms what any sinus sufferer could tell you easily – it has already begun! Today’s Pollen Report for London, Ontario claims that Cedar and Juniper are at high pollen outputs, with Box elder, Maple and Oak Trees not far behind with moderate ratings. Aspen, Ash and Poplar trees are also on the moderate pollen radar too.
Pollen Count Indicator
Low 0-20 grains/m³ Moderate 21-80 grains/m³ High 80+ grains/m³
According to Web MD, trees that often trigger allergies include:
- Box elder
- Mountain elder
You might note that the trees on this list are also many of the same trees that are at their worst right now. It isn’t the showy flowery trees that have yet to bloom, rather trees with fine pollen that is easily blown on the wind. And before you damn the reason why pollen was ever born, know that without that powdery pollen, trees would not be able to reproduce. That means no more trees.
Sorry, but CLC Tree Services doesn’t ever want to see that happen.
So what recourse does a poor allergy sufferer have in the spring? For starters, you can minimize your exposure to tree pollen. That means keeping windows and doors closed to prevent pollen from entering your home. Make sure to dust regularly to keep that pesky pollen at bay. Park your vehicle in the garage to cut its exposure to pollen and keep its windows rolled up as well. You also might want to park your pets indoors as well, as when they go out, they will bring in pollen dust on their coat. Make sure to brush them well to keep that pollen out. If you have been exposed, take action and wash your hands, face, hair and clothes. It’s all about reducing your exposure.
Speaking of exposure, pollen counts are usually at their highest in the morning, so you might want to think about avoiding outdoor activities between 5-10 am. Another way to reduce that exposure is by taking stock of your allergens and reducing them in your environment. If oak or ash trees are the culprit, then perhaps they aren’t the best choices for trees in your yard. A hard call, as all trees have merit, but a miserable allergy day is never worth it if it can be prevented.
It is interesting to note though that sometimes it is not even the specific tree that is the problem, but rather the sex of it. An article by AboutForestry notes that trees are either monoecious or dioecious; monoecious trees have both male and female flowers on individual specimens, whereas dioecious trees are either male or female. It is the male trees that are typically the problem. So if box elders make you balk, then just choose a female tree to be allergy-free, without having to make the call to be tree-free.
However you go about it, CLC Tree Services wishes everyone a welcome and allergy-reduced spring!