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Marcus, Joseph A.
Phoradendron tomentosum (DC.) Engelm. ex A. Gray
Christmas mistletoe, Mistletoe, Injerto
Viscaceae (Christmas Mistletoe Family)
Synonym(s): Phoradendron flavescens var. pubescens, Phoradendron serotinum var. pubescens
USDA Symbol: phto2
USDA Native Status: L48 (N)
An evergreen shrub parasitic on trees. Widely used in the United States as a Christmas decoration. Stems smooth, green, brittle. Leaf blades thick, leathery, roughly elliptic, up to 2 inches long and 1 1/8 inches wide, with smooth margins, a rounded tip, and tapered base. Plants male or female, easily distinguished in winter by shiny, white berries 3/16 inch wide on the female, and spikes of greenish yellow flowers on the male. Especially common on Sugar Hackberry (Celtis laevigata), Cedar Elm (Ulmus crassifolia), and Honey Mesquite (Prosopis glandulosa), also on other trees.
Bloom InformationBloom Color: Yellow , Green
Herbarium Specimen(s)NPSOT 0550
Collected Jan 2, 1988 in Bexar County by Harry CliffeNPSOT 0373
Collected Mar 7, 1993 in Comal County by Mary Beth White
Record Last Modified: 2012-11-17
Research By: TWC Staff