Allergen Update

Victoria, British Columbia

Predominant pollen:

Acer sp.- The maple season can start from late March to early April and end mid May to mid June. Generally, counts are low, but occasional moderate counts are observed. Not considered to be important allergens.

Alnus sp.- Alder season can start from late January to early February and end early to late July. There is a great fluctuation of counts from low to very high throughout the season due to the number of species present and weather factors. The majority of high counts occur from mid to late February up to mid-April. Alder is considered to be the most important tree allergen at this site.

Corylus sp.- Hazelnut season can occur from late January to early March. Only low counts with occasional moderate occuring some years. May not cause allergic reactions at such low levels.

Betula sp.- The birch season lasts almost four weeks. The season can start from mid-March to early April and end late April to early May. Low to moderate counts are observed.

Populus sp.- The poplar, cottonwood and aspen season can start from early March to late March and ends mid to late April. The counts do not get very high and may cause allergic reactions only in those individuals who are highly sensitized.

Cupressaceae family- The cedars, junipers and yews produce low to very high counts, from late January to late July. Most species are not significant in causing allergic reactions.

Pinaceae family- This group includes the spruce, fir and pine trees. High counts can be observed from late April to late June. The season varies from year to year but not as much as in some of the other sites outside of British Columbia. This group of trees is very important in individuals who are sensitized.

Larix sp.- The larch and tamaracks produce low to high counts, depending on the year, and the pollen season lasts well over one month. The season can start from late March to early April and end late April to mid-May. They have been associated with allergic reactions especially when, some years, the pollen is found in high numbers.

Tsuga sp.- The hemlocks produce low and high counts and the season lasts almost two months. The season can start from mid-March to mid-April and can last until mid-June. The season is sporadic from year to year due to the different species present and the effect of weather. It may cause allergic reactions to those highly sensitized when shed in high numbers.

Quercus sp.- The oak season lasts approximately two weeks. It can occur from mid-April to late May with mostly low, to the occasional moderate counts observed. May be of no significance in allergic reactions at these levels except in individuals who are highly sensitized.

Gramineae family- The grasses produce the most significant counts, from late April to early August. The season is from early April to early October. Our counts can be low but allergy sufferers can be reacting to the grass allergen since grass is mowed before it produces pollen and allergy sufferers are being subjected or primed to the allergen

Ambrosia sp.- Ragweed is rarely observed in our air samples at this site. This weed is not native to this area.

Urticaceae sp.- This group includes the nettles and parietaria. Low to moderate counts are observed from mid-May to late June. Due to their small size they are considered important allergens.

Plantago sp.- The plantains produce low counts from late April to late August. Could be of importance to some people who have become highly sensitized.

Rumex sp.-The dock and sorrel season can start from early to mid-May and ends early August. The pollen is considered mildly allergenic.

Predominant spores:

Diatrypaceae sp.- The counts are sporadic throughout the whole counting season. Very high counts can be observed from January to late fall. No known allergic properties.

Erysiphe (Oospora) sp.- Powdery mildew - The season is from the end of January to mid-October. Low to high counts are observed and the season is very sporadic.

Leptosphaeria sp. & Leptosphaeria look-alikes- These two are grouped together since they are in the same class of fungi and are similar microscopically. The season is from February to mid-October. The counts vary from day to day, which is probably due to the effect of weather. Low to high counts are observed.

Boletus sp.- The counts for this spore are very sporadic with low to high counts observed. It may be of significance in causing allergic reactions. The season is from June to mid-October.

Coprinus sp.- This mushroom produces low to high counts from March to well into October. It is considered an important allergen.

Ganoderma sp.- This bracket fungus can produce low to high counts from February to well into October. The highest counts are observed from May to well into October. It is considered an important allergen.

Uredinales sp.- The rusts produce low to moderate counts but not enough is known about their significance in causing allergic reactions at these levels. The season is from May to mid-October.

Ustilaginales sp.- This spore is abundant at this location. The allergenic properties of the smuts are unknown. However, it belongs to the Basidiomycota which are associated with allergies and asthma. The season is from April to mid-October with high counts in June and July.

Alternaria sp.- The counts are in the moderate range from early June to early October. Some species are known to cause allergic reactions. Low counts can be observed throughout the counting season, from February to well into October.

Penicillium sp. & Aspergillus sp.- These spores are found throughout the whole counting season and are probably present in significant numbers beyond that. High counts are observed from January to late October.

Botrytis sp.- This may be a significant allergen, with mostly low to moderate counts. The season is February to late October and the counts are very sporadic.

Cladosporium sp.- The most abundant spore found throughout the whole season. This spore exists all year round but very high counts are known to occur starting from February to well into late fall.

Fusarium sp.- Counts are sporadic throughout the whole counting season. Low to high counts are observed from January to well into October. They are known to cause allergic reactions.

Epicoccum sp.- Some species are known to cause allergic reactions. The season is from July to the end of September with sporadic moderate counts. May not be a significant allergen at these levels.

Helicomyces sp.- Season is from February to mid-October producing low to high counts. The season is very sporadic. Allergenic properties are not well understood.

Myxomycetes- Low to moderate counts are observed from February to mid-October. Season is very sporadic.

Last Updated: March 2015

The information presented here is designed to inform, not replace, the relationship that exists between a patient and a medical professional.

About | Legal & Privacy | Contact