International Journal of Biometeorology

, Volume 52, Issue 4, pp 311–321 | Cite as

Factors that determine the severity of Betula spp. pollen seasons in Poland (Poznań and Krakow) and the United Kingdom (Worcester and London)

  • A. Stach
  • J. Emberlin
  • M. Smith
  • B. Adams-Groom
  • D. Myszkowska
Original Paper


The aim of this paper is to analyse variations in the severity of Betula pollen seasons, particularly in relation to meteorological parameters at four sites, Poznań and Krakow in Poland, and Worcester and London in the United Kingdom. Results show that there is a significant relationship between Betula pollen season severity and weather conditions both in the year before pollination and in the same year that pollen is released from the plant. Furthermore, it is likely that the magnitude of birch pollen seasons in Poznań, Worcester and London is linked in some way to different phases of the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO). Significant positive relationships exist between birch pollen counts at Poznań and temperatures, rainfall and averages of the NAO in the year before pollination. An opposite relationship is evident at the two sites studied in the United Kingdom. There were significant positive correlations between the severity of birch pollen seasons recorded at Worcester and temperatures and averages of the NAO during the winter and spring in the year of pollination, and negative correlations at both Worcester and London with similar variables from the previous year. In addition, Betula pollen seasons in Krakow do not appear to be influenced by the NAO, which is probably the result of Krakow having a more continental climate.


Betula pollen season severity Birch pollen North Atlantic Oscillation Poland United Kingdom 



The authors wish to thank the British Atmospheric Data Centre (BADC) for providing access to the Met Office Land Surface Observation Stations Data. We also thank the Met Office who supplied the initial meteorological data for the UK via the BADC, and the Institute of Meteorology and Water Management in Poznań and the Department of Climatology, Institute of Geography and Spatial Management, Jagiellonian University in Krakow for supplying the meteorological data for Poland. This work was partly funded by the European Union’s Sixth Framework Programme through the Marie Curie Actions Transfer of Knowledge Development Scheme. European project MTKD-CT-2004-003170. Polish Ministry of Education and Science grant 128/E-366/6 PR UE/DIE265.


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Copyright information

© ISB 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • A. Stach
    • 1
  • J. Emberlin
    • 2
  • M. Smith
    • 1
    • 2
  • B. Adams-Groom
    • 2
  • D. Myszkowska
    • 3
  1. 1.Laboratory of AeropalynologyAdam Mickiewicz UniversityPoznańPoland
  2. 2.National Pollen and Aerobiology Research UnitUniversity of WorcesterWorcesterUK
  3. 3.Department of Clinical and Environmental AllergologyJagiellonian UniversityKrakowPoland

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