Viscum album (Mistletoe)



Viscum album

Photo of Viscum album

Viscum album – (Mistletoe)

Perennial green shrub of the Mistletoe family Loranthaceae– to one meter long. Its stem is very short but it’ s got many branches repeatedly forking,so they make a sort of a big clump hanging from the invaded tree. Flowers are unisexual. They grow in clusters of three or five on male or female plants. Male show four tiny petals and four stamens without anthers, directly joined to petals. Female flowers are very simple. Both of them greenish.

Its fruit is a white, translucent berry about 6 or 10 mm in diameter with only one seed. Birds are very fond of these kind of berries. One they have eaten them, they get rid of their seeds by rubbing their beaks on to the branches of the trees. By doing this, the sticky seeds get stuck on the tree. There they produce some special roots which begin to suck the sap of the infested plant.

It grows on the branches of several trees, mainly deciduous such as apple, oaks or poplars,but sometimes on some pines, too. Since mistletoe is also able to synthesize part of their food needs by means of the sun, we say that this is a semi-parasite plant.

Medicinal plant. See properties Study of plants Cultivation details

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Vicente Martínez Centelles
Written by Vicente Martínez Centelles Founder of the web and director. Teacher of natural sciences, expert in plants, natural remedies and botanical photography.

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