It has increased business for car wash operations exponentially, and given allergy sufferers a nightmare. Pollen is everywhere. You may even see large yellow clouds blowing down the road.
But Scott Hawkins, spokesman for the South Carolina Forestry Commission, says that yellow is the color of money for the state.
Hawkins says forestry and timber-related businesses constitute the number one manufacturing industry in the state in terms of jobs and payroll– with a $17.45 billion impact on the state’s economy.
But if you’re not as excited about the reproduction of trees as Hawkins is, he points out that the pollen should be gone statewide by the end of the month.
(Hawkins on pollen MP3 2:200
Hawkins on pollen
Hawkins says insects and birds do not aid pollination in pine trees, so the wind-born pollen must be spread by wind. But most trees, including pines, can pollonate themselves. Some species like red cedar, persimmon, and ash cannot.
Hawkins points out that pine pollen is usually not the culprit in allergic reactions since the granules are much larger than other species which trigger reactions.
And he even has some advice to help you deal with pollen, particularly if you’re an allergy sufferer. Keep windows closed in your home and car and use your car’s “recirculate” feature on the climate control system, to keep the pollen out. To avoid having pollen in the house where it may continually irritate allergy sufferers, wash your clothing after being outside for long periods of time and wash your face and hair daily. Even wash your indoor pets if they’re outside for an extended period.