Phoradendron leucarpum (Raf.) M.C. Johnst. ssp. macrophyllum
(Englem.) Kuijt

Big-leaf Mistletoe
Viscaceae (Mistletoe Family)

Big-leaf mistletoe is a stout, green, parasitic perennial with brittle, woody stems, minutely canescent to canescent-tomentose becoming glabrate in age.  It is dioecious, having pistillate and staminate flowers on separate plants.  The leaves are opposite, thick-fleshy, elliptic-obovate to oblanceolate, yellow-green and from 3/8" to 2" long. The flowers are on jointed spikes arising from the leaf axils and up to 1-1/4" long. There are about 12 flowers per pistillate joint and about 20 per staminate joint.  The fruit is a glabrous white berry sometimes tinged with pink and about 3/16" in diameter. Big leaf mistletoe is most frequently seen on Platanus racemosa, but has also been observed on Populus, Salix, Fraxinus and Juglans.  It may be commonly found in the Transverse and Peninsular Ranges, extending to the deserts, and to Baja, west Texas and Colorado.  The flowering period is mostly from December to March.

Click here for Latin name derivations: 1) Phoradendron 2) leucarpum 3) macrophyllum
Pronunciation: fore-a-DEN-dron lew-KAR-pum mak-ro-FIL-um.
Click here for Botanical Term Meanings.
Formerly Phoradendron serotinum ssp. macrophyllum