The Beauty of Arbutus

Groves of twisted Arbutus (Arbutus menziesii) can be found at Helliwell Provincial Park on Hornby Island, British Columbia. A painting called “The Sunbathers” (by Daphne Stevens) hanging on my kitchen wall depicts a group of smooth, orange-barked arbutus trees basking in the sun on a hot, rocky hillside from BC’s southern Gulf Islands. There is something mesmerizing about this tree, …

Pollen is in the Air

Red Alder (Alnus rubra) begins to produce pollen as early as late February on Vancouver Island. When my husband starts sneezing and snuffling, I know that allergy season has arrived. Here on the coast, pollen related allergies can start in late February and continue through to September. To better understand my husband’s suffering I went to the source, the pollen …