Did you know that mistletoe is, by definition, a parasitic plant that survives by draining the life from the host tree? In other words, the plant equated with love during the holiday season is a vampire.
Perhaps the most interesting aspect about mistletoe is that its vampiric qualities are thought to be the main reason the plant’s connected with matters of the heart.
You see, mistletoe thrives off a host and, as a result, retains its lively green appearance throughout the entire year. Those stolen nutrients let these vampire plants stay aesthetically pleasing all the time.
During those cold, dreary winter months when we’re feeling a bit down, mistletoe takes us back to the vibrant feeling of spring and summer. Of course, just like many things in nature that trick us into a false sense of security, mistletoe can be rather harmful to humans. Some species are poisonous – problematic if your loved one chooses the wrong type to cut and hang in a doorway inside your home.
In addition to proving dangerous to us, this vampire plant can spread itself out too far and completely drain its host, similar to a vampire unable to stop before its victim’s drained to the last drop of blood.
Both scenarios are bad news for all involved.
It’s worth noting particular species of mistletoe are relatively benign, even though they do suck the essence of their surroundings. Sounds awfully familiar to a vampire content to feed on just a small amount of blood at a time, thereby causing a bit of weakness in their prey but leaving them with enough strength to recover for a future feeding.
Beyond the threat to host trees and humans, scientists have discovered evidence suggesting the plant may be a game-changer as part of a cancer treatment program. In time, mistletoe may widely be used to help people deal with chemotherapy, aiding cancer recovery. Medicinal usage of vampire plants brings to mind the healing properties of vampire blood showcased in the popular TV show “True Blood.”