Welcome to the Mistletoe Pages, a website full of information about mistletoe; its biology, traditions, cultivation and conservation. The site is mainly about the ‘original’ mistletoe of northern Europe, and concentrates mostly on its status in the UK. A new citizen-science study of mistletoe’s distribution and abundance across the country was launched in November 2023. Details of the new project, app-based and called mistleGO!, are available on the Tree Council website here.
Our species is technically known as European White-berried Mistletoe, Viscum album. Many other mistletoes occur around the World, all of them parasitic on tree branches.
Viscum album is the species originally used in Christmas and midwinter celebrations so it is particularly important in folklore. Other mistletoe species are often used as substitutes in areas beyond Europe.
But it is Viscum album that has the distinctive forked branches, paired symmetrical evergreen leaves and pearlescent white berries associated with midwinter and Christmas. The alternative mistletoe species do not, generally, have the same visual appeal!
There is a lot of information within the site. A summary of what’s where is given below. For mistletoe news visit the Mistletoe Diary website.
What’s where in the Mistletoe Pages site:
- The Kissing tradition
- Norse and Greek mistletoe traditions
- Druidry – ancient and modern
- Peace, luck and New Year
- Other traditions – old and new
- Art nouveau mistletoe