When It’s Windy In Boise, Does It Do Any Good?
The wind blows over patio furniture, whips trash into your backyard, and turns a great hair day into a bad one in five seconds flat, but the spring breeze does have some benefits too.
Here's a fun fact to whip out at parties. The average wind speed in Boise is 22.3 miles per hour, and that puts us in the top ten windiest places in Idaho, according to USA.com.
A 40 mph gust will make you take the ponytail holder off of your wrist and tie your hair up into a tight bun for the rest of the day, but anything over 20 mph is probably enough to toss a wayward plastic grocery bag into your front yard and make your tulips lean back like they're surprised to see you.
Washing the car on a windy day is a good thing because it dries in a hurry, and the wind is good for drying beach towels when you get home from the pool. But, aside from helping with the honey-do list, does the wind really do any good?
I started wondering about this in the midst of a recent bad-hair-day, and I do love a silver lining so I decided to look around on the web for wind-related benefits. It turns out, plants and animals depend on it, and even thrive on the wind.
Plants really love a good stiff breeze. The wind helps disperse seeds, and in some cases, it can help create seeds, according to Michigan State University. Pine and oak trees need the wind to blow pollen around the atmosphere, and then the pollen needs to magically land on an egg to create a seed. Isn't it amazing that even one tree can spring up as part of this mystical journey, let alone thousands? So much has to happen exactly right for a tree to grow, and the wind is a big part of the process.
Animals use the wind to fly and run, and they let it carry them further than they would go otherwise. I've never seen a bird flying against the wind, have you? That might be entertaining, but not the smartest idea. The wind can also carry smells to warn animals of predators and other dangers, according to SwitchEnergyProject.com. And it can warn humans of skunks. Thanks, wind.
Since there are benefits, maybe an occasional wind-induced bad hair day is okay. Just hope it doesn't get too wild on your wedding day, or on your graduation day, or on that party day where you whip out the 22.3 mph trivia question. Some days are better when they're calm, and the red Solo cup full of punch doesn't tip over.