Time to pucker up!

My patch of parasitic mistletoe.

A couple of months ago when we were still in winter and the bush — hibiscus, I think — in which this thing resides was still lacking its leaves, I noticed a patch of something green sitting there alone. Looks like mistletoe, I muttered as I continued on with life.

This morning, I took a photo using a plant-identification app and, sure enough, it’s mistletoe. I mentioned this to my child bride and, after the appropriate smootch below the mistletoe, she said she’d never heard of it. It must not be “a thing” in Mexico.

Hibiscus, I think.

The plant on which the mistletoe lives — mistletoe is a parasite — is, I believe, a form of hibiscus. The plant-ID app was unsure. When we moved into the Hacienda 18 years ago, it was living cheek-to-jowl against a loquat tree where some nincompoop had planted it. I uprooted it and planted it over thataway a bit, giving it space.

The hibiscus — and let’s assume that’s what it is — flowers now and then, kinda pretty, and it does not toss trash all over the place, so I’ve left it in peace. Longtime readers here know that I am a plant predator, quite the killer when it suits me, and it suits me when a plant becomes a nuisance, mostly by tossing trash.

When we moved here, there was a fig bush where one of the carports now sits, so it was removed, which is a shame because I like figs.

The skeletal loquat.

Not far off is the loquat tree which grew like mad, tossing loquats all over the place where they rotted on the ground. Tossed big, ugly leaves too, much like those of a magnolia, which is a yucky tree, I think, in spite of my being a son of the Old South.

Rhett Butler and all that.

Alas, my child bride is excessively fond of loquats and the tree on which they grew maniacally. But she didn’t have to deal with the constant mess and work, so her vote was of less value than mine.

I am a kind husband, however, so I did not remove it. I only cut it back, way, way back, and I maintain it as you see in the photo, a half-alive zombie.

When I die, she can let it go whole hog again and, believe me, it will.

It needs a trellis.

Let us further milk the gardening topic today. While the Hacienda was under construction in 2003, I planted five bougainvillea bushes along the property wall you see in these photos. Two promptly died. Of the remainers, one was very different. It does not go berserk, and at times during the year it’s all flowers. It’s my best bougainvillea buddy.

But the best gardening news of the day is that we have mistletoe, which gives my child bride another reason to kiss me, even though she’d never heard of mistletoe. You get your kisses where you can. That’s always been my philosophy.

6 thoughts on “Time to pucker up!

    1. Ricardo: I think so. As for the mistletoe, that plant has been out there for many years, and it’s the first time I’ve noticed mistletoe on it. It’s a fun thing to have.

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  1. I’ve never heard of a deciduous Hibiscus. I think they are native to Hawaii and evergreen. I suspect it is something else. Tell us more about the plant identification app. I am interested.

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    1. Phil: Now that you say that, I suspect it’s something else too. As for the plant finder, I just looked at the app on my phone and see no specific name, but there are lots of plant-identification apps available. I’m not sure how reliable they are. This is my second or third one because the others did not work well. This one nailed the mistletoe, however, on the first try.

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  2. I suspect our social myth of mistletoe is every bit as confounding to your wife’s Mexican sensibilities as are some of the Mexican myths I have heard.

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    1. Señor Cotton: I think the mistletoe thing is more of a tradition than a myth, though an internet search turns up at least one item with myth in the headline. It didn’t really back the word up well in the story below, however. As for Mexican myths, being married into a family, I have heard quite a few, but they are often not considered myths, but facts. One is that if you let refrigerated beer return to room temperature, you cannot put it back in the fridge because that will ruin it, making it undrinkable. That is pure myth cause it ain’t so. There are others, of course.

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