Spring is here…almost! Watch out for allergies

Published 12:04 pm Friday, March 3, 2023

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Spring is here…almost! Yes, it is time to take a moment to pause and look around and see the different flowers and trees coming into bloom. The daffodils, jonquils, and forsythias are blooming as are flowering trees.
Some would say spring is the best season because of warmer weather, the longer days, more sunshine, birds emerge from winter habitats, trees grow leaves again, and you can open your windows finally.
But, don’t get overly excited as Old Man Winter can strike anytime during March, so don’t plant those spring flowers just yet. Spring is beautiful, but it’s also key time of year for seasonal allergies. As plants release pollen, millions of people with hay fever start to sniffle and sneeze. Pollen from trees serves as one of the most common allergy triggers starting in March, and reaches its peak in April when pine, mulberry, and willow trees release their pollen.
Pollen can travel for miles, so it’s not just about the plants in your neighborhood.
Pollen counts tend to be particularly high on breezy days when the wind picks up these sneeze-inducing grains and carries them through the air. Rainy days, on the other hand, wash away the allergens. Symptoms of allergies include runny nose, watery eyes, sneezing, coughing, itchy eyes and nose, etc.
There are ways to keep the pollen at bay, such as staying indoors whenever the pollen count is very high. The count usually peaks in the morning. Also, keep your doors and windows closed during the spring months to keep allergens out.
Clean the air filters in your home often. Also, clean bookshelves, vents, and other places where pollen can collect.
You may want to wear a mask when you go outside and even when you vacuum and dust.
Yet, despite allergies and an occasional appearance from the left-overs of winter, spring offers a renewal of life. As we enjoy the warm weather, our minds wander. Fresh, warm air. Light breezes, bringing the intoxicating smell of blooming wisteria. Trees bursting with new leaves. Birds happily flitting about, looking for food for their new brood. Sunshine that warms not only the body, but the soul as well.
Yes, spring. The season that brings us from those cold and dreary days of winter to the renewal of life. It’s no wonder that a Gallup poll said Americans favor spring as their favorite season, 36 percent compared to the runner-up, fall at 27 percent. It has been America’s favorite season since the 1940s, probably longer than that, but polls (thank goodness) weren’t around back then. And it makes sense that among young adults, summer outpaces spring as the favorite season. I can only figure the reason is they still look good in a bathing suit.
Fast forward a month, and we could be barefoot and digging in the dirt, hoping, no, knowing, that this tomato plant will produce the best tomatoes ever. We can already taste that first tomato sandwich, with its sweet and tart juices flowing from the corners of our mouths.
When it comes to the seasons and the weather, there’s much to hope for. And, hope and wait is all we can do as the weather is unpredicatable, especially in March. Here’s hoping for a great March and an early arrival of warm weather.

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