Homesteading and Livestock

Self-reliance and sustainability in the 21st century.

Add to My MSN

Mistletoe Hunting

12/16/2011 12:52:19 PM

Tags: mistletoe, christmas, Sherry Leverich Tucker

Mom and Jean with MistletoeDuring the holidays we hang Mistletoe up, under the door sill. This gives us an excuse for hugging and kissing during this merry time of year (like we need an excuse!). But, what exactly is mistletoe? Here is a link to information about mistletoe. It is actually a very interesting parasitic plant!

Mistletoe does not grow here in southern Missouri where we live. It is easy to spot in treetops, though, just south of here. We have even seen it just beyond the Arkansas/Missouri border, which is less than 50 miles. On our trip this fall just East of Texarkana (in southern Arkansas) we found mistletoe growing in our friends large oak tree. I could tell that my mom was just a little excited to find it growing in her oak tree low enough to reach with a long handled saw. Jean, our hostess, longtime family friend, and owner of the beautiful farm where this mistletoe inhabited oak tree stood, was happy to accommodate my mom in procuring it. Mistletoe is so green and beautiful. It has an almost leathery feel to its sweet little teardrop shaped leaves. Mom had fun sawing down the twigs, and we gathered a large basket before quitting.

There were also some large clusters of mistletoe up in the high branches of the oak tree. It is sometimes a pastime to shoot at the mistletoe with a shotgun. How effective this is at ridding the tree of the parasite, I know not, but I am sure that (by and by) there have been many young boys who have enjoyed this spomom mistletoert.

We took the mistletoe home in hopes of it lasting till the Christmas season. The pieces that fared the best were refrigerated with a damp paper towel. Most of it dried out, though, so I think it would work best to pick it later in the fall if plans are to use it for holiday decorating.

So, Merry Christmas, hang your mistletoe and put your lipstick on. I already hear my three boys grumbling as their mommy chases them down demanding smooches!

photo credit:  top, Alice (mom) with Jean Lowe holding basket of beautiful mistletoe.  bottom, Alice (mom) using a long handled saw to cut the mistletoe out of the tree. 


Content Tools

Post a comment below.


Jessica Mink
12/19/2011 2:43:41 AM
Heh, we just found some mistletoe while out on a hike today out near the Serias. Anyway I read your article in Mother News Earth. I highly recommend checking out out John Seymour's "The guide to Self-Sufficiency" and if you haven't already seen them. Have a lovely winter.

Sherry Tucker
12/17/2011 2:59:34 PM
Merry Christmas to you, too, Sandy!

Sandy Davis
12/16/2011 8:02:46 PM
What fun! Merry Christmas!

Subscribe Today - Pay Now & Save 66% Off the Cover Price

Lighten the Strain on the Earth and Your Budget

Mother Earth NewsAt MOTHER EARTH NEWS, we are dedicated to conserving our planet's natural resources while helping you conserve your financial resources. That's why we want you to save money and trees by subscribing through our earth-friendly automatic renewal savings plan. By paying with a credit card, you save an additional $5 and get 6 issues of MOTHER EARTH NEWS for only $12.00 (USA only).

You may also use the Bill Me option and pay $17.00 for 6 issues.

(* indicates a required item)
Canadian subs: 1 year, (includes postage & GST). Foreign subs: 1 year, . U.S. funds.
Canadian Subscribers - Click Here
Non US and Canadian Subscribers - Click Here