February starts tomorrow – and so Mistletoe Diary is resuming (after taking January off) to talk about mistletoe planting! February, March and early April are the best months for planting mistletoe seeds onto host branches – and for climbing around in tree tops looking for bird-sown seeds and watching them germinate. More chat about all that in the next few days and weeks…
Other mistletoe news this week includes the re-launch, with new survey software, of the Mistletoe League Project, the online survey aiming to gather information on mistletoe management in orchards and on garden fruit trees. It had a few hiccups over Christmas as the survey system hosting the questionnaires (SurveyPirate) announced it was closing down in late January – so there seemed little point in finishing off all the survey segments if they were to be deleted. They’re supposed to be running for at least two years, not 2 months!
But we now have new survey software (Lime Survey) run from within the site (much more reliable!) – and 3 out of the 4 survey elements have been made live today – so I can now resume promoting it. You’ll find details about the project at www.british.mistletoe.org.uk and a direct listing of the surveys at www.british.mistletoe.org.uk/lime/.
Parts 1a and 1b are about mistletoe management on fruit trees in orchards (1a) and gardens (1b). Part 2 (not yet live – maybe tomorrow) is about fruit tree varietal preferences, and Part 3 is about mistletoe on all trees, not just fruit trees.
Part 3 has been added in response to media coverage of the project that, inevitably (I blame sub-editors…), got the story entirely wrong, suggesting that it was a general mistletoe survey, rather than a fruit tree mistletoe management survey. So I’ve had a lot of submissions about mistletoe sightings, rather than management. It seems a shame to waste such enthusiasm so there’s now a special section just for general mistletoe observations.
Wanna grow your own mistletoe?
Looking for that original Valentine’s Day gift?
Why not get a Grow-Your-Own Mistletoe Kit from the English Mistletoe Shop?