NEW YORK — The polar vortex may be responsible for an exceptionally strong, though delayed, spring allergy season, according to a report published Friday on CNN.com.
Citing allergy experts, the snowfall and below-freezing temperatures that defined this year's winter means a late flowering for trees, and that means pollinating trees will "be busy catching up" once temperatures do warm up.
"If it warms up quickly, and gets really warm, that may mean everything starts pollinating all at once," commented Estelle Levetin, professor of biology at University of Tulsa, CNN.com reported. Typically, trees release pollens much more gradually. But if spring is shortened, then that process is compacted into a few weeks.
The increased moisture in the ground — melting winter snows coupled with spring rains — will also spawn plenty of mold for allergy sufferers, the report noted.