Pollen season is in full swing, but you probably already knew that because you've been wheezing and sneezing for weeks now. Pollen can be a sneaky devil, and you often aren't even able to see it when it's in the air — but this video of a tree exploding with pollen is one of those few instances where you can see pollen wreaking havoc on everyone. The pollen falling off of the tree in this video is so thick that it looks like a literal cloud of volcanic ash slowly rising into the air, basically making you want to run for cover as fast as you can. If you're someone who suffers from allergies, then this video is probably making you sneeze just by looking at it.
The video was taken and uploaded to Facebook by a woman named Jennifer Henderson, whose husband took the video while he was working in Millville, New Jersey. She wrote in the caption, "When my husband said the pollen’s bad, I probably should’ve taken his word for it. Crazy!" Um, yeah — I don't think anyone would immediately assume something on this level when talking about pollen in any circumstance.
This video honestly belongs in that M. Night Shyamalan film The Happening, which is about a plant-caused plague that becomes dangerously apocalyptic. Don't believe me? Watch the video for yourself.
The creepiest thing about this whole video is the way the pollen just emerges from the tree like an apparition, holding shape and form for a moment before beginning to disperse. You can't help but imagine where all that pollen is going, or feel a sudden tickle in your nose.
As of writing this article, this video has been viewed nearly 5 million times since it was uploaded — which makes sense, since it's straight-up alarming for anyone to watch, and especially so for allergy-prone people. But is this level of pollen actually normal and commonly found in nature?
Unfortunately, yeah, this video apparently isn't capturing anything that unusual. Trees very commonly contain huge amounts of pollen, according to The Washington Post, since pollen is literally the result of plant residue. And during seasons like spring, when there are especially high pollen counts after a long, cold winter, it makes it even more likely for trees to be overflowing with pollen, like the one in Henderson's video.
In an interview with BuzzFeedNews, Henderson explained that her husband, who works for the city and was clearing out branches, became curious after seeing how much pollen was on a single branch. She told the news outlet that he "picked up one of the branches and tapped it and was like, 'oh my gosh.' All this pollen fell off of it." Once he saw what a single branch contained, Henderson explained, he couldn't help but wonder what would happen if he touched an entire tree. I'd imagine it was at this moment that, if any of this guy's co-workers had allergies, they were probably pretty p*ssed at him.
This year's allergy season is especially bad, according to Healthline, because of higher average temperatures.
By early April, Healthline reported that over one-third of the country was already at "moderate to high pollen levels," which isn't good news for anyone with anything remotely resembling pollen-related allergies.
If that tree video is already making you feel a little sniffly, don't panic just yet. The best way to deal with allergies is to be preventative and take the precautions that you can within your environment. For example, you may not be able to control the pollen count in your city, but you can control how often your windows are open, how dust-free your apartment is, and what types of over-the-counter allergy medications you take, depending on how your symptoms present.
Of course, if it's possible, you should maybe try to avoid parks for a little while. That tree could be lurking in a picnic area near you.