Thursday, 22 December 2011

December - Flower of the Month


Mistletoe 
Mistletoe is an unusual plant, growing in the top branches of 'host' trees, sometimes forming huge globe shaped bunches. Old apple trees are a particularly favoured host so mistletoe is often found in historic orchards. Although scarce in many areas, near my home mistletoe is abundant in tall Linden or lime trees. 
This unusual nature of growing 'half way between heaven and earth' and its prominence during winter when the host trees are bare of leaves, has lead to mistletoe being regarded as a sacred plant by many cultures as it represents a link between the heavenly gods and goddesses and earthly life. In many cases, ancient folklore links mistletoe to fertility and love, hence the tradition of kissing under bunches of this plant at Christmas time. 

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