Cold Wave Won't Help Allergy Sufferers

September 13, 2011; 6:06 AM ET
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This image of ragweed appears courtesy of Virginia Tech. Goldenrod is <a href="">often mistaken for ragweed</a> and causes fewer problems because of its pollen makeup.

Even though a frost appears likely to hit the Upper Midwest at midweek and the colder parts of the Northeast late in the week, it will not be enough to give allergy sufferers a break.

Ragweed and grass pollen pose some of the biggest problems for allergy sufferers, and there is certainly plenty of that during the late summer and early autumn.

Unfortunately, while a frost is heading for parts of the Upper Midwest, it will not be cold enough to kill off the weeds and grass pollen.

According to Agricultural Meteorologist Dale Mohler, "Low temperatures in most outlying areas will only dip to around the 30-degree mark and will only be around that level for a couple of hours or so."

That's not cold enough, long enough to kill the problem weeds and grass.

For a thorough kill, we would need temperatures dipping into the middle 20s for a number of hours.

Unfortunately even at these temperatures, there is the risk of damage to tender vegetables and flowers. Take the necessary precautions, such as covering those plants with plastic, moving potted plants indoors and harvesting mature or near-mature fruit.

Even with the inevitable waves of frost in the coming weeks, falling leaves and dampness will lead to mold and mildew problems for a time.

The excessively wet conditions in much of the Northeast and Midwest could lead to an especially bad mold and mildew season, outdoors and indoors.

Even if the temperature is in the comfortable range, you may want to keep that dehumidifier and/or air conditioner/filtering system running.

For those who suffer from allergies to pollen and mold, there are many weeks to go before the first big, dry, cold air masses come calling late in the fall.


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