Ed Yeates ReportingWith spring just around the corner and so many stressed trees dying again this year, maybe our allergies won't be so bad. Wrong! Mother Nature may actually have something really BIG in store for us.
This is what we expect every Spring - buds busting out all over, along with our allergies. But now with so many trees dying from years of drought related stress, the numbers have dwindled. Fewer trees should mean less pollen. But Nature this season may have the last laugh - or the last sneeze.
USU's Bill Varga who heads up the Utah Botanical Center says when things are going bad for a tree or plant, Nature simply throws out a recipe for survival.
Bill Varga, Director, Utah Botanical Center: "I think it's just a character that's exhibited throughout nature, that, be careful. If something is going to happen here, we need to prepare for the future."
And that future for a stressed tree means a big blast of pollen to make more baby trees. And nothing might trigger it more, despite our wet winter, than too many back to back years of drought.
Bill Varga: "In the macro environment, all of these trees have been under stress for a number of years and one year is not going to alleviate that situation."
We'll have to wait and see what really happens, but perhaps this year we should expect a bigger crop of pollen - a bigger crop of sneezes.
Bill Varga: “Let’s hope not, but that very well could be the situation this year.”
The pollen count today was moderate. But that could all change this weekend when temperatures get into the 70's.