How to Cope With Pollen in Porches and Gazebos

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Do you, like me, come home every day to insane amounts of pollen, covering your picnic table or outdoor space? Spring is just starting and I want to enjoy my patio every day, but my kids have such bad allergic reactions to ragweed that I can’t just leave the pollen there to blow away on its own. So I feel like I’m constantly cleaning. True, it’s the season for spring cleaning, but there there has to be a better way to protect against the constant dust and irritants floating around my outdoor space!

I think I have a few options: (1) Clean it all the time, over and over again; (2) Invest in a slightly more permanent solution one-time to cut down on my repeated cleaning.

Here are two solutions you can do yourself without breaking your budget to cut down on the time you spend focused on cleaning ragweed this summer.

Clear Vinyl Plastic Panels

You could purchase some vinyl panels, which are made of a flexible marine-grade vinyl plastic. They are commonly used in conjunction with a space heater to create a warm space during the winter months, but they are perfectly dense. You can often mount these directly to the top of your porch, and while there are tiny incidental gaps around the edges, these panels will keep 95% of the pollen off your porch. Another advantage to vinyl panels is that you can remove them when your pollen season is over, so your porch can still be the aesthetic centerpiece of your backyard.

Summer Insect Curtains

While not quite as effective as vinyl panels, you can also purchase mesh curtains designed to keep mosquitoes and other summer bugs out. The amount of pollen blocked will depend upon the tightness of the mesh. (The larger the hole count per square inch, the smaller the hole size will be.) The best mesh to use is an 800 hole per sq inch no-see-um mesh that is used to block a very tiny biting fly commonly called a no-see-um. The cool part of this product is that you kind of get double-value since the mesh will block 80% of your pollen while also protecting you from irritating mosquitoes.

Finally, black no-see-um meshes offer outstanding visibility and are easy to throw in the wash after the pollen season is over.