En EspaŅol

Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
    
 
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions
Can't find the answer in our existing FAQs, submit a question to Mr. Smarty Plants.
Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.
 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Saturday - September 04, 2010

From: San Antonio, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Trees
Title: How far east to avoid Ashe juniper pollen from Austin?
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

How far East of San Antonio and Austin do I have to go to avoid the pollen of Juniperus Ashei? Is Bastrop county safe? I'd be happy if it were gone 90% of the winter days - will the wind keep it away from Bastrop?

ANSWER:

How about Shreveport, Louisiana?

Another common name of Juniperus ashei (Ashe's juniper) is Mountain Cedar. According to this article from Conifer Reproductive Biology  Cedar Fever: Juniperus Ashei Pollen on the rise:

"Mountain cedar’s allergen-laden pollen is capable of moving at least 500 km from source and its concentrations are highest at night. This means that others outside of central Texas and Oklahoma suffer too."

We had to do a little math, but 500 km is approximately 312 miles, so the 327 miles from Austin to Shreveport would give you a little leeway.

In Central Texas, mountain cedar pollens appear as early as October, peak in January, remain elevated until April, and are occasionally seen as late as May. So, from October until maybe May, you would have a heck of a commute.

A close relative of Ashe juniper, Juniperus pinchotii (Pinchot's juniper), is found to the north of us, in the Panhandle of Texas, and usually begins pollinating a little earlier. So, the first cool front coming down from the northwest is going to get the meteorologists talking about the "redberry juniper" in the pollen count. From austinallergies.com, Has Cedar Fever Come Early gives you some more information on where that pollen originates. 

So, if you move to Bastrop, TX, the juniper pollen is going to get you from the west and from the north. Sorry.

From our Native Plant Image Gallery:


Juniperus ashei

Juniperus ashei

Juniperus pinchotii

Juniperus pinchotii

 


 

 

More Trees Questions

Keeping a Texas Madrone alive from Belton TX
October 01, 2012 - I have found a supplier of a Texas Madrone and have been wanting to grow one ever since our family vacation to Big Bend NP. My question is how do you have success with this tree? Many people say it is...
view the full question and answer

Can a pecan tree be kept from producing for a season?
July 03, 2009 - Can a pecan tree be kept from producing for a season?
view the full question and answer

Cover oak roots with a pond from Round Rock TX
December 22, 2012 - Hello! I have looked for this answer. We have 2 huge old beautiful live oaks. One is very close to the patio and house, and the other is about 20 feet of the house. Thus, part of their root systems ar...
view the full question and answer

Texas madrone trimmings for a wedding
July 26, 2011 - Looking for Texas madrone tree trimmings needed for a special wedding.
view the full question and answer

What are the native fruit-bearing plants in North America?
February 16, 2010 - What are the native fruit-bearing plants in North America?
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants's Facebook profile Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.

Mr. Smarty Plants wants you to be his Facebook friend. Click the Facebook icon to add yourself to Mr. Smarty Plants list of friends.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | SITEMAP | STAFF
© 2015 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center