There is a tree on the Overlook Trail that I’ve dubbed “The Mistletoe Tree”. This is because it harbors several clumps of the parasitic plant, and at elevations where it would be easy enough to pluck a sprig to hold above one’s loved ones for a kiss.
Wikipedia says that “It is associated with Western Christmas as a decoration, under which lovers are expected to kiss. The reasons for this are less than clear.”
But then who needs a reason?
Being parasitic, mistletoe penetrates the host tree to steal water and nutrients. Mistletoe typically does not to lead to the demise of the host, except in extreme infestations, but large clumps may lead to the loss of a limb. The University of California has more information on mistletoe as well as how to control it, but here on the Overlook we let nature take its course as much as we can.