The warmer summer has meant a bumper crop of mistletoe this Christmas.
The plant, which lives on trees, is semi-parasitic and can overwhelm its hosts if it is not trimmed back.
- The tradition of hanging it in the house goes back to the times of the ancient Druids. It is supposed to possess mystical powers which bring good luck to the household and wards off evil spirits
- It was used as a sign of love and friendship in Norse mythology
- The name mistletoe comes from two Anglo Saxon words 'Mistel' (which means dung) and 'tan' (which means twig or stick) so you could translate mistletoe as 'dung on a stick'!
Ken Goodwin reports