The sprig of mistletoe plant has been associated with the Christmas holiday since ages. The power of mistletoe is not unknown to anyone; it makes anyone and everyone kissable around the holiday season - whether it is a friend or a relative or even a stranger. The moment anyone comes beneath a sprig of mistletoe at a Christmas party, he becomes a target for anyone who manages to see him. However, many more things are associated with the mistletoes apart from kissing. Given below are some interesting facts about the Christmas mistletoe.
Fun Facts About Mistletoe
Given here are a number of fun facts about mistletoe. Check out some interesting facts about the Christmas mistletoe.
- The American mistletoe plant is the mistletoe species that is mainly associated with kissing. However, it is only one of the two mistletoe plants that are native to the USA, the other being the dwarf mistletoe.
- Not even the mistletoes have been saved from the threat of extinction. About twenty species of mistletoes come in the endangered list. So, next time you pluck a mistletoe sprig, make sure that it is not from one of the endangered species.
- The scientific name of American mistletoe is Phoradendron, meaning 'thief of the tree'. Though the mistletoe plant is not classified as parasitic in nature, it comes quite close. It sinks its roots into the host tree and takes away all the nutrients.
- The term mistletoe is believed to be derived from an Anglo-Saxon word 'Mistal' and 'Tan', which mean 'dung' and 'twig', respectively. Thus, the meaning of mistletoe comes out to be 'dung on a twig', quite opposite to the sweet kissing tradition with which it is associated.
- The seeds of mistletoe plant are quite sticky and easily glue themselves to the beaks or feathers of birds or the fur of other creatures. They usually fall near a likely host tree and start to germinate.
- The seeds of the dwarf mistletoe can explode from ripe berries and spurt as far as 50 feet.
- Mistletoe is poisonous for human beings, but its berries and leaves serve as a high-protein food to many animals.