Working in my yard this weekend, pulling weeds and mulching the flower beds, I found myself humming this old folk song “Yellow is the Colour of My True Love’s Hair”. Not because my love’s hair is blonde in the morning (it is salt-and-pepper all the time), but because EVERYTHING was yellow, dusted with a thick coat of what my botanist friend calls tree sperm.
Pine pollen — we all more or less hate it. Everything looks dull. It clings to all surfaces; cars seem to be a particular magnet. With a small gust of wind, you can see it billowing in sulfurous clouds of gold. Despite our general annoyance — guess what? Pine pollen is supposed to be good for you! Seriously.
There are numerous articles on the web claiming it is loaded with androgen, a substance that boosts testosterone levels, maintains your energy, and promotes well-being. Yogiadvisor touts it as anti-inflammatory and anti-aging, among many other beneficial qualities. Secrets of Longevity says “it gives a much needed growth and libido boost to almost all plants and animals that come in contact with it”. Many alternative health sites such as SurThrival, which calls it “a whole food source and a tonic medicine”, actually recommend that we consume it in one form or another.
Plus, pine pollen is not the main culprit that causes itchy, watery eyes and runny noses. We blame allergies on this yellow coating because it is so visible but, according to WebMD, pine trees don’t deserve their bad reputation. Pine pollen is relatively heavy and falls to the ground. ”It doesn’t float in the air as long so it doesn’t provoke as strong an allergy attack.”
While I am not about to rush to the health food store to load up on pine pollen supplements, I am going to close my doors and windows (to keep my housework to a minimum) and go outside to bask in nature’s free health booster. Yes, let the pollen rain down on me…as I hope for a big, wet rain to help clean it all up.