Apparently, mistletoe does not kill the trees it inhabits. Mistletoe is parasitic and once its seeds are spread by birds it grows on the limbs or trunks of trees, similar to a root-like growth. They take water and nutrients from the plants they grow on. Mistletoe does not kill trees, because it depends on them to live. Sometimes trees appear to weaken when inhabited by mistletoe. Real problems actually arise when the mistletoe dies or declines and then fungal organisms or insects can enter a tree via the wounds left from the mistletoes’ growth, which will cause limbs or trunks to rot and the tree to die. A guide published by the University of Florida reports that the berries are poisonous and the leaves probably are too.
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