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And, in some areas, not only is the season starting early, but the pollen counts are breaking records. Several days ago, Atlanta's pollen count reading was 9,369 particles of pollen per cubic meter, which is 55 percent higher than the old record high set in 1999. Normally, anything above 1,500 is considered high in the Atlanta area, according to the American College of Asthma, Allergy and Immunology (ACAAI).
Pollination - leads to the creation of new seeds that grow into new plants. It all begins in the flower. Flowering plants have several different parts that are important in pollination. Flowers have male parts called stamens that produce a sticky powder called pollen. Flowers also have a female part called the pistil. The top of the pistil is called the stigma, and is often sticky. Seeds are made at the base of the pistil, in the ovule.
To be pollinated, pollen must be moved from a stamen to the stigma. When pollen from a plant's stamen is transferred to that same plant's stigma, it is called self-pollination. When pollen from a plant's stamen is transferred to a different plant's stigma, it is called cross-pollination.
Cross Pollination - When pollen from a plant's stamen is transferred to a different plant's stigma, it is called cross-pollination. Cross-pollination produces stronger plants. The plants must be of the same species. For example, only pollen from a daisy can pollinate another daisy. Pollen from a rose or an apple tree would not work.
But how does pollen from one plant get moved to another?
The wind picks up pollen from one plant and blows it onto another.
Plants that are pollinated by wind often have long stamens and pistils. Since they do not need to attract animal pollinators, they can be dully colored, unscented, and with small or no petals since no insect needs to land on them.
Seed dispersal is the movement or transport of seeds away from the parent plant. Plants have limited mobility and consequently rely upon a variety of dispersal vectors to transport their propagules, including both abiotic and biotic vectors. Seeds can be dispersed away from the parent plant individually or collectively, as well as dispersed in both space and time. The patterns of seed dispersal are determined in large part by the dispersal mechanism and this has important implications for the demographic and genetic structure of plant populations, as well as migration patterns and species interactions. There are five main modes of seed dispersal: gravity, wind, ballistic, water and by animals. Some plants are serotinous and only disperse their seeds in response to an environmental stimulus. It can be measured using seed traps.
Originally posted by Portlandia
I can't help but wonder if the increase in pollen this year has anything to do with the fall out from Fukushima's on going spew of radioactive particles. Not to mention the burning's happening now since March in Japan of the radioactive waste that has been accumulating.
I have been searching around for info about pollen after Chernobyl. I have found this interesting article which hopefully the link will work properly for you all to see yourself. It's titled 'Spruce pollen as a source of increased radiocesium concentrations in the air'.
Every morning the cars are coated with pollen, and the windshield needs a good cleaning before venturing out.