Scientific Name: Phoradendron macrophyllum
Common Names: Colorado Desert Mistletoe, Big Leaf Mistletoe
Growth Habit: Shrub, Subshrub, Hemiparasite
Arizona Native Status: Native
Habitat: Desert, Riparian. This plant grows in riparian trees in desert washes and canyons.
Flower Color: Inconspicuous (green)
Flowering Season: Winter, Spring (early)
Height: Stems to 3 feet (91 cm) long
Description: The flowers are green and tiny. The female inflorescences (internodes) have 6 to 10 flowers and are followed by white or pink-tinged, round, 1/5 inch (5 mm) in diameter, glabrous berries. Birds eat the berries and are responsible for spreading and "planting" the seeds in their droppings. The leaves are green, opposite, mostly glabrous, up to 1 inch (2.5 cm) wide, and obovate to rounded in shape. The stems are green and branched. This aerial hemiparasite grows on the woody branches of non-oaks, especially Fraxinus, Platanus, Populus, and Salix species here.
Poisonous – This plant and its bitter, white to pinkish berries are poisonous.
Kingdom: Plantae – Plants
Subkingdom: Tracheobionta – Vascular plants
Superdivision: Spermatophyta – Seed plants
Division: Magnoliophyta – Flowering plants
Class: Magnoliopsida – Dicotyledons
Family: Viscaceae – Christmas Mistletoe family
Genus: Phoradendron Nutt. – mistletoe
Species: Phoradendron macrophyllum (Engelm.) Cockerell – Colorado Desert mistletoe
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