Wednesday, May 30, 2018

Because it was there... pine pollen.

 It is tree pollen season here.  Cars turn yellow and we all sneeze and rub our eyes.  Molly is allergic to this as well as corn pollen, so she had a pretty rough time of it here for a few months every year.  Eventually she found that bee pollen really helped.  BUT since it is here now and I've read random bits about it here and there. I decided to try gathering some so that if I decide to try something later, I've got the the powder to work with.
That's how I found out I'm allergic to it too.  Not terribly, but it isn't something I want to work with on a daily basis.  Here's how I did it... 

Looking up at the White Pine tree, there were pollen covered male cones everywhere.I'd read that all one has to do is put it into a bag and shake.  No.  All over me! Hair, clothes, hands... everywhere.

So instead, I cut about a cupful of the bunches and gently dropped them into the bag.
To keep the pollen contained, the cones went into a mesh strainer over a bowl, and the whole thing went into a gallon bag with the top (side?) left open so it could dry and continue to mature.

This is about half of what came from the cones.  I emptied it the other day.

Dumped out onto a clear cutting board.

Using a 15X lens so you can see the individual grains of pollen.

Another close-up.  I used a slim knife blade to scrape up the pollen and slide it into a bottle.

All done and happy to get this eye glue out of the kitchen.  About 1/2 ounce of pollen from a cup of cones.  That's more than I expected.  Pretty amazing, really.

So now I have it ready when I've had time and inclination to fool around with it.  Right now there are so many herb medicines showing up and needing attention.  By the time fall rolls around, I'll have a dozen things like this to do.

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