Latin Name: viscum album – European Mistletoe. phoradendron flavenscens – American Mistletoe
Alternative Name: birdlime, all-heal, druid’s herb, golden bough, holy wood, misseltoe, thunderbesem, witches broom, wood of the cross, devil’s fuge, donnerbesen, herbe de la croi, mystyldyne, lignum crucis, korean mistletoe
Forms Available: leaf, twig
Mistletoe – viscum album – Also known as Birdlime, All-Heal, Druid’s Herb, and Golden Bough. It is the most sacred “tree” of the Druids and rules over Winter Solstice. The berries are poisonous. Mistletoe is thought to be most powerful if growing on an oak tree. The leafy twigs, toxic in volume, are a heart tonic, reduce blood pressure, slow heart rate, strengthen capillary walls, stimulate the immune system and inhibit tumors.
Mistletoe grows from northern Europe to northwest Africa and east to Asia and Japan. Different varieties are found on hard-wood and softwood trees, which include apple, elm, oak, spruce, pine, and poplar. Druids considered that the mistletoe found on oak was the most potent and sacred. The berries ripen in midwinter and have a further peculiarity in that the ripe berries, open flowers, green berries, and immature leaves can all be found on the same plant. Mistletoe does not adhere to the linear logic of most plants, with their budding, flowering, and seed production sequence. It also seems to ignore heilotropism and geotropism, it will grow upside down, sideways, or in any direction it “chooses”. Another unique feature is that it germinates only in the light, unlike most plants, which require darkness to germinate. The flower buds form in May but do not open until February. The berries ripen the following winter. The entire process, from flower to fruit, can take almost two years!
Mistletoe is a semi-parasitic plant, generally spread by bird droppings. It forms a globular mass that can reach up to three feet in diameter. There are male plants and female plants, and both derive thair water and minerals from the host tree and produce their own carbohydrates via photosynthesis.
Mistletoe seems to hold itself aloof form the rhythms and laws of the earthly seasone, and in this way parrallels the illogical and uncontrolled growth of cancerous cells in the body. As early as 1961, laboratory studies demonstrated that mistletoe, along with other immunostimulant plants such as -eupatorium, astragalus, echinacea, acathopanax, chamomilla, and sabal- inhibited tumors in mice. Fermented mistletoe taken from oak trees was shown to stimulate the activity of killer cells and showed an especially stron effect on rat hepatomas -liver cancers. Unfermented mistletoe showed a strong effect on human leukemia -Molt 4- cells. Korean mistletoe -Viscum coloratum- was found to be more active in inhibiting the growth of leukemia L1210, especially when used fresh.
Mistletoe extracts have been shown to possess significant antitumor activity, not only against murine tumore but also in cases of Lewis’ lung carcinome, a colon adenocarcinoma 38 and C3H adenocarcinomas of the breast. The extracts are not toxic and may be administered in high doses. Twenty drops four times a day is the average dose.
Many nervous conditions such as convulsions, delirium, hysteria, neuralgia, urinary disorders, and heart conditions have benefitted from the activity of mistletoe. It has also been used to temper the spasms of epilepsy. Mistletoe strengthens the heart and has been used as a heart tonic in cases of typhoid fever. It strengthens the glandular system and has helped with inflammation of the pancreas. It promotes hormonal balance when taken daily for six months.
Mistletoe is recommended for use after a stroke or when hardening of the arteries is suspected. It will stop pulmonary and intestinal bleeding caused by dysentary and typhoid. It helps to lower high blood pressure and raise low blood pressure, and it has been used to ease heavy menstrual flow, heart palpitations, hot flashes, and the anxiety associated with menopause. The fresh juice has been said to increase fertility in barren women.
The green plant can be simmered using a standard concoction of two teaspoons of the herb per cup of water and taken in tablespoon doses several times a day.
CAUTION: Large doses have been known to induce convulsions in children. The berries should not be used for internal consumption. They are used in salves and washes for wounds.
Aromatherapy & Health Uses: The leafy twigs, toxic in volume, are a heart tonic, reduce blood pressure, slow heart rate, strengthen capillary walls, stimulate the immune system and inhibit tumors.
Other Uses: Kiss your love beneath mistletoe and you’ll stay in love. Burned, Mistletoe banishes evil. Its wood is a good choice for wands and ritual inplements. Mistletoe is an excelllent all-purpose herb. Spell Use: Protection; Love; Hunting; Fertility; Health.
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