ABC News the other night was remarking on the astronomically high pollen counts this year in the southeast. This is to the tune of 5000+ (parts per whatever), instead of a normal very high of 120. Sitting at my brother's house on Easter we could actually see puffs of pollen coming off of a tree in the breeze, like he had pulled out a cigar for a post meal boys club card game.
The bottom line is, this is true, as my meals now consist primarily of Claritin.
The cause of all this pollen, says the News, is that everything is blooming at once, thanks to an usually cool late winter in the south east followed up by the 3 week spell of summer we've just had with minimal rain. And unfortunately this is true too.
In my garden right now, I have old-fashioned Bleeding Heart (Dicentra Alba) blooming with woodland phlox (Phlox Divaricata), which all makes sense, but what also is blooming are the coneflowers (Echinacea Purpurea), Cleome, and Agapanthas. What the heck are they doing here in early April!!? What is this going to mean for my mid and late summer garden? I am having trouble believing that the coneflowers are going to bloom for 6 months, as great a plant as they are.
Some of this issue is of course, that some of these flowers were raised until weeks ago at a nursery, and combined with the summer weather they were just ready. But that doesn't explain the agapanthas - I planted that last October from a clump dug up in Va, and because of the cooler weather in February it was actually late to come up! Same for the cleome. Those were seeds.
Its interesting which plants are getting mixed up by all of this. The sedum, for instance, looks exactly like it should and is a long way from blooming. The star jasmine, which should be blooming next month, hasn't even put buds out yet, so I'm guessing he is on schedule too. The Lavender looks to be on schedule, the Catmint. The Rose of Sharon and the Callicarpa bush are acting like its still winter, and haven't even noticed anything awry. Both are still mainly sticks, which as I understand it, is normal for them.
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