Aerobiologia

pp 1–16 | Cite as

Quantifying the relationship between airborne pollen and vegetation in the urban environment

  • Athanasios Charalampopoulos
  • Maria Lazarina
  • Ioannis Tsiripidis
  • Despoina Vokou
Original Paper
  • 13 Downloads

Abstract

The goal of this study was to quantitatively assess the relationship linking vegetation and airborne pollen. For this, we established six sampling stations in the city of Thessaloniki, Greece. Once every week for 2 years, we recorded airborne pollen in them, at breast height, by use of a portable volumetric sampler. We also made a detailed analysis of the vegetation in each station by counting all existing individuals of the woody species contributing pollen to the air, in five zones of increasing size, from 4 to 40 ha. We found the local vegetation to be the driver of the spatial variation of pollen in the air of the city. Even at very neighbouring stations, only 500 m apart, considerable differences in vegetation composition were expressed in the pollen spectrum. We modelled the pollen concentration of each pollen taxon as a function of the abundance of the woody species corresponding to that taxon by use of a Generalized Linear Model. The relationship was significant for the five most abundantly represented taxa in the pollen spectrum of the city. It is estimated that every additional individual of Cupressaceae, Pinaceae, Platanus, Ulmus and Olea increases pollen in the air by approximately 0.7, 0.2, 2, 6 and 5%, respectively. Whether the relationships detected for the above pollen taxa hold outside the domain for which we have data, as well as under different environmental conditions and/or with different assemblages of species representing them are issues to be explored in the future.

Keywords

Allergy Ecosystem service Pollen spectrum Spatial pattern Woody plants Urban green 

Notes

Acknowledgements

This project was funded by the programs ‘Aristeia Scholarship 2014’ and ‘Action C: Supporting Research activity of Basic Research 2013’ of the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki (AUTH), Greece.

References

  1. Alcázar, P., Cariñanos, P., De Castro, C., Guerra, F., Moreno, C., Domínguez-Vilches, E., et al. (2004). Airborne plane tree (Platanus hispanica) pollen distribution in the city of Córdoba, South-Western Spain, and possible implications on pollen allergy. Journal of Investigational Allergology and Clinical Immunology, 14, 238–243.Google Scholar
  2. Beckett, K. P., Freer-Smith, P. H., & Taylor, G. (2000). Particulate pollution capture by urban trees: Effect of species and windspeed. Global Change Biology, 6, 995–1003.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. British Aerobiology Federation. (1995). Airborne pollens and spores. A guide to trapping and counting. Rotherham: National Pollen and Hayfever Bureau.Google Scholar
  4. Canty, A., & Ripley, B. (2015). Boot: Bootstrap R (S-Plus) Functions. R package version 1.3-17.Google Scholar
  5. Cariñanos, P., Alcázar, P., Galán, C., & Dominguez, E. (2002a). Privet pollen (Ligustrum sp.) as potential cause of pollinosis in the city of Cordoba, southwest Spain. Allergy, 57, 1–7.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Cariñanos, P., & Casares, M. (2011). Urban green zones and related pollen allergy: A review. Guidelines for designing spaces of low allergy impact. Landscape and Urban Planning, 101, 205–214.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Cariñanos, P., Casares-Porcel, M., & Quesada-Rubio, J. M. (2014). Estimating the allergenic potential of urban green spaces: A case-study in Granada, Spain. Landscape and Urban Planning, 123, 134–144.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Cariñanos, P., Galán, C., Alcázar, P., & Dominguez, E. (2008). Classification, analysis and interaction of solid airborne particles in urban environments. In A. G. Kungolos, C. A. Brebbia, & M. Zamorano (Eds.), Environmental toxicology II (pp. 317–325). Southampton: WIT Press.Google Scholar
  9. Cariñanos, P., Galán, C., Alcázar, P., & Domínguez, E. (2007). Analysis of the solid particulate matter suspended in the atmosphere of Córdoba, south-western Spain. Annals of Agricultural and Environmental Medicine, 14, 159–160.Google Scholar
  10. Cariñanos, P., Sánchez-Mesa, J. A., Prieto-Baena, J. C., Lopez, A., Guerra, F., Moreno, C., et al. (2002b). Pollen allergy related to the area of residence in the city of Córdoba, south-west Spain. Journal of Environmental Monitoring, 4, 734–738.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Charalampopoulos, A. (2017). Pollen-scapes in natural and urban environments: Production and atmospheric circulation of pollen grains at different heights and elevations (Ph.D. thesis, in Greek). Thessaloniki: Aristotle University of Thessaloniki.Google Scholar
  12. Charalampopoulos, A., Damialis, A., Tsiripidis, I., Mavrommatis, T., Halley, J. M., & Vokou, D. (2013). Pollen production and circulation patterns along an elevation gradient in Mt Olympos (Greece) National Park. Aerobiologia, 29, 455–472.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Charpin, D., Calleja, M., Lahoz, C., Pichot, C., & Waisel, Y. (2005). Allergy to cypress pollen. Allergy, 60, 293–301.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. D’Amato, G., Cecchi, L., D’Amato, M., & Liccardi, G. (2010). Urban air pollution and climate change as environmental risk factors of respiratory allergy: An update. Journal of Investigational Allergology and Clinical Immunology, 20, 95–102.Google Scholar
  15. Damialis, A., Fotiou, C., Halley, J. M., & Vokou, D. (2011). Effects of environmental factors on pollen production in anemophilous woody species. Trees, 25, 253–264.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Damialis, A., Halley, J. M., Gioulekas, D., & Vokou, D. (2007). Long-term trends in atmospheric pollen levels in the city of Thessaloniki, Greece. Atmospheric Environment, 41, 7011–7021.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Dzierzanowski, K., Popek, R., & Gawronska, H. (2011). Deposition of particulate matter of different size fraction on leaf surfaces and in waxes of urban forests species. International Journal of Phytoremediation, 13, 1037–1046.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. ESRI. (2011). ArcGIS desktop: Release 10. Redlands, CA: Environmental Systems Research Institute.Google Scholar
  19. Euro + Med (2006): Euro + Med PlantBase—the information resource for Euro-Mediterranean plant diversity. Published on the Internet http://ww2.bgbm.org/EuroPlusMed/. Accessed May 17, 2017.
  20. Fotiou, C., Damialis, A., Krigas, N., Halley, J. M., & Vokou, D. (2011). Parietaria judaica flowering phenology, pollen production, viability and atmospheric circulation, and expansive ability in the urban environment: Impacts of environmental factors. International Journal of Biometeorology, 55, 35–50.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. González, F. J., & Candau, P. (1997). Study on pollen content in the air of Seville (SW Spain): The pollen spectrum and its relation with vegetation and anthropogenic activity. Botanica Helvetica, 107, 221–237.Google Scholar
  22. Gonzalo-Garijo, M. A., Tormo-Molina, R., Muñoz-Rodríguez, A. F., & Silva-Palacios, I. (2006). Differences in the spatial distribution of airborne pollen concentrations at different urban locations within a city. Journal of Investigational Allergology and Clinical Immunology, 16, 37–43.Google Scholar
  23. Google Earth Pro v.7.1.7.2602 [April 20, 2017] Thessaloniki, Greece. 40°37’11.53”N, 22°55’36.78”E, Eye alt 13.12 km, Digital Globe, 2017, http://www.earth.google.com. Accessed April 30, 2017.
  24. Grant, G. (2012). Ecosystem services come to town: Greening cities by working with nature. Chicester: Wiley.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Green, R. J., & Davis, G. (2005). The burden of allergic rhinitis. Current Allergy and Clinical Immunology, 18, 176–178.Google Scholar
  26. Grewling, Ł., Šikoparija, B., Skjøth, C., Radišić, P., Apatini, D., Magyar, D., et al. (2012). Variation in Artemisia pollen seasons in Central and Eastern Europe. Agricultural and Forest Meteorology, 160, 48–59.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Haberle, S. G., Bowman, D. M., Newnham, R. M., Johnston, F. H., Beggs, P. J., Buters, J., et al. (2014). The macroecology of airborne pollen in Australian and New Zealand urban areas. PLoS ONE, 9, e97925.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Hidalgo, P. J., Galán, C., & Domínguez, E. (1999). Pollen production of the genus Cupressus. Grana, 38, 296–300.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Hirst, J. M. (1952). An automatic volumetric spore trap. Annals of Applied Biology, 39, 257–265.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Hruska, K. (2003). Assessment of urban allergophytes using and allergen index. Aerobiologia, 19, 107–111.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Jim, C. Y. (2013). Sustainable urban greening strategies for compact cities in developing and developed economies. Urban Ecosystems, 16, 741–761.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Karagiannakidou, V., & Raus, T. (1996). Vascular plants from Mount Chortiatis (Macedonia, Greece). Willdenovia, 25, 487–559.Google Scholar
  33. Kasprzyk, K. I. (2006). Comparative study of seasonal and intradiurbnal variation in airborne pollen in urban and rural areas. Aerobiologia, 22, 185–195.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Katelaris, C. H., Burke, T. V., & Byth, K. (2004). Spatial variability in the pollen count in Sydney, Australia: Can one sampling site accurately reflect the pollen count for a region? Annals of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology, 93, 131–136.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Krigas, N. (2004). Flora and human activities in the area of Thessaloniki: Biological approach and historical considerations (Ph.D. thesis, in Greek). Thessaloniki: Aristotle University of Thessaloniki.Google Scholar
  36. Latinopoulos, D., Mailios, Z., & Latinopoulos, P. (2016). Valuing the benefits of an urban park project: A contingent valuation study in Thessaloniki, Greece. Land Use Policy, 55, 130–141.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Livesley, S. J., McPherson, G. M., & Calfapietra, C. (2016). The urban forests and ecosystem services: Impacts on water, heat and pollution cycles at the tree, street and city scale. Journal of Environmental Quality, 45, 119–124.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Med-Checklist (2006). A critical inventory of vascular plants of the circum-mediterranean countries. Published on the Internet http://ww2.bgbm.org/mcl/. Accessed May 22, 2017.
  39. Nazridoust, K., & Ahmadi, G. (2006). Airflow and pollutant transport in Street canyon. Journal of Wind Engineering and Industrial Aerodynamics, 94, 491–522.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Nicolau, N., Siddique, N., & Custovic, A. (2005). Allergic disease in urban and rural populations: Increasing prevalence with increasing urbanization. Allergy, 60, 1357–1360.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Nowak, M. A., Szymanska, L., & Grewling, L. (2012). Allergic risk zones of plane tree pollen (Platanus sp.) in Poznan. Postepy Dermatologii I Alergologii, 29, 156–160.Google Scholar
  42. O’Rourke, M. K., & Lebowitz, M. D. (1984). A comparison of regional atmospheric pollen with pollen collected at and near homes. Grana, 23, 55–64.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. Oksanen, J., Blanchet, G., Kindt, R., Minchin, P. R., Legendre, P., O’Hara, B., & Suggests, M. A. S. S. (2012). Vegan: Community Ecology Package. R package Version 2.0–3. Available at: http://cran.r-project.org/.
  44. Pawankar, R. (2014). Allergic diseases and asthma: A global public health concern and call to action. World Allergy Organization Journal, 7, 12.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. Peel, R. G., Hertel, O., Smith, M., & Kennedy, R. (2013). Personal exposure to grass pollen: Relating inhaled dose to background concentration. Annals of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology, 111, 548–554.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. Puc, M. (2011). Threat of allergenic airborne grass pollen in Szczecin, NW Poland: The dynamics of pollen seasons, effect of meteorological variables and air pollution. Aerobiologia, 27, 191–202.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  47. R Core Team. (2016). R: A language and environment for statistical computing. Vienna, Austria: R Foundation for Statistical Computing.Google Scholar
  48. Reed, S. D., Lee, T. A., & McCrory, D. C. (2004). The economic burden of allergic rhinitis: A critical evaluation of the literature. Pharmacoeconomics, 22, 345–361.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  49. Rodriguez-Rajo, F. J., Fernández-sevilla, D., Stach, A., & Jato, V. (2010). Assessment between pollen seasons in areas with different urbanization level related to local vegetation sources and differences in allergen exposures. Aerobiologia, 26, 1–4.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  50. Rojo, J., Rapp, A., Lara, B., Fernández-González, F., & Pérez-Badia, R. (2015). Effect of land uses and wind direction on the contribution of local sources to airborne pollen. Science of the Total Environment, 538, 672–682.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  51. Shackleton, S., Chinyimba, A., Hebinck, P., Shackleton, C., & Kaoma, H. (2015). Multiple benefits and value of trees in urban landscapes in two towns in northern South Africa. Landscape and Urban Planning, 136, 76–86.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  52. Šikoparija, B., Radisik, P., Pejak, T., & Simié, S. (2006). Airborne grass and ragweed pollen in the southern pannonian valley: Consideration of rural and urban environments. Annals of Agricultural and Environmental Medicine, 13, 263–266.Google Scholar
  53. Skjøth, C. A., Ørby, P. V., Becker, T., Geels, C., Schlünssen, V., Sigsgaard, T., et al. (2013). Identifying urban sources as cause of elevated grass pollen concentrations using GIS and remote sensing. Biogeosciences, 10, 541–554.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  54. Tormo-Molina, R., Rodríguez, A. M., Palaciso, I. S., & López, F. G. (1996). Pollen production in anemophilous tree. Grana, 35, 38–46.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  55. von Döhren, P., & Haase, D. (2015). Ecosystem disservices research: a review of the state of the art with a focus on cities. Ecological Indicators, 52, 490–497.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  56. Walters, S. M., Alexander, J. C. M., Brady, A., Brickell, C. D., Cullen, J., Green, P. S., Heywood, V. H., Matthews, V. A., Robson, N. K. B., Yeo, P. F., & Knees, S. G. (Eds) (1989). The European Garden Flora volume III. Dicotyledons (Part I). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  57. Weinberger, K. R., Kinney, P. L., & Lovasi, G. S. (2015). A review of spatial variation of allergenic tree pollen within cities. Arboriculture & Urban Forestry, 41, 57–68.Google Scholar
  58. Werchan, B., Werchan, M., Mücke, H. G., Gauger, U., Simoleit, A., Zuberbier, T., et al. (2017). Spatial distribution of allergenic pollen through a large metropolitan area. Environmental Monitoring and Assessment, 189, 169.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  59. WHO (World Health Organization) (2013). Review of Evidence on Health Aspects of Air Pollution - REVIHAAP. First Results. Copenhagen, Denmark:WHO Regional Office for Europe.Google Scholar
  60. Ziello, C., Sparks, T. H., Estrella, N., Belmonte, J., Bergmann, K. C., Bucher, E., et al. (2012). Changes to airborne pollen counts across Europe. PLoS ONE, 7, e34076.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  61. Ziska, L. H., Bunce, J. A., & Goins, E. W. (2004). Characterization of an urban–rural CO2/temperature gradient and associated changes in initial plant productivity during secondary succession. Oecologia, 139, 454–458.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V., part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Athanasios Charalampopoulos
    • 1
  • Maria Lazarina
    • 1
  • Ioannis Tsiripidis
    • 2
  • Despoina Vokou
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Ecology, School of BiologyAristotle University of ThessalonikiThessalonikiGreece
  2. 2.Department of Botany, School of BiologyAristotle University of ThessalonikiThessalonikiGreece

Personalised recommendations