|Mistletoe growing in tree (sorry for the blurry photo!)|
Mistletoe is probably one of the most popular types of greenery during the holiday season. Everyone is always looking for the mistletoe so that they can steal a kiss!
Mistletoe is a parasitic plant (actually hemi-parasitic) that grows high in trees. About the only way to get it down is to fetch the old shotgun and shoot it down! If you look closely at the mistletoe that you can buy in stores, you will often see where some of the leaves have been torn by buckshot. Since mistletoe is so difficult to obtain, many folks just use fake mistletoe.
At Christmas gatherings in the 19th century, folks would have a ball of mistletoe hanging from the ceiling. If a couple smooched under the mistletoe, they were required to pluck one of the waxy white berries from the plant. Once all of the berries were gone, the kissing was supposed to stop. I am sure that over the years, people have decided to ignore this tradition because the berries do tend to drop off as the plant is handled. Since most people do not gather their own mistletoe, it might be days or weeks old by the time it is purchased and most of the berries have long since fallen off.
Do you have mistletoe in your home?