SHOOTS: 1 m or more high, short-pubescent, especially near apices, green to pale-green, the internodes 3-4 em long. LEAVES: obovate to elliptic-circular 3-5 cm long, 1.5-3 cm wide, mostly glabrous. INFLORESCENCE: staminate spikes with 4-5(-7) fertile segments, with 20-40 flowers per segment in 3 rows; pistillate spikes with 3-5 fertile segments, with 6-15 flowers per segment. FLOWERS: slightly pubescent. FRUIT: white, glabrous, ca. 5 mm in diameter. HOSTS: Populus, Salix, Platanus, Fraxinus, Alnus, Juglans, and other deciduous trees. NOTES: Sub-Mogollon Riparian woodlands: all AZ cos. except Apache; 50-1700 m (100-5500 ft); Dec-Mar; CA, s NM, w TX; Baja C., Chih., Son., Mex. REFERENCES: Hawksworth, Frank G. 1994. Viscaceae. J. Ariz. - Nev. Acad. Sci. Volume 27(2), 241-245.
Jepson 2012, Kearney and Peebles 1969
Duration: Perennial Nativity: Native Lifeform: Subshrub General: Aerial, parasitic shrub, perennials, stems and shoots bright to pale green, shoots to 1 m or more high, surfaces glabrous to short-pubescent, especially near the apices, stems jointed and brittle when dry, the internodes 15-60 mm long. Leaves: Opposite, relatively large and bright to pale green, obovate to elliptic-circular and 3-6 cm long and 1.5-5 cm wide, with mostly glabrous, shiny surfaces, petioled or not. Flowers: Small and inconspicuous, mostly green and slightly pubescent, inflorescences staminate and pistillate; staminate spikes with 4-7 fertile segments, with 20-40 flowers per segment in 3 rows; pistillate spikes with 3-5 fertile segments, with 6-15 flowers per segment. Fruits: White to pink-tinged, globose berries with glabrous surfaces, 4-5 mm in diameter. Seeds solitary. Ecology: Found in sub-Mogollon riparian woodlands, parasitic on Populus, Salix, Platanus, Fraxinus, Alnus, Juglans, and other deciduous trees (other than Quercus), from 150-5,500 ft (45-1676 m); flowering December-March. Distribution: New Jersey to Florida, west to California, south to central Mexico. Notes: Determine this species by the glabrous fruits 4-5 mm in diameter, the glabrous to pubescent herbage, and the leaves to 3 cm long or more. Although there are no official synonyms for this species, the basionym Phoradendron flavens var. macrophyllum has many combinations, look for it in Kearney and Peebles under Phoradendron flavescens var. macrophyllum. The keys to the variety are the leaves to 6 cm long and 5 cm wide, with shiny surfaces, and is found on trees other than Quercus. Ethnobotany: Specific uses for this subspecies are unknown, but other species in the genus have uses; plants growing on cottonwood used medicinally for unspecified purpose, decoction of leaves taken for menstrual cramps, stomach cramps, powdered berries mixed with water and used to bathe sore or infected eyes, also ground berries mixed with a small amount of ashes, boiled in a pot and eaten, and bed of heated branches used by women for menstrual cramps, leaves used to dye basket weeds permanently black, used in the War Dance liniment, and twigs hung over the doorway of a hogan for protection from lightning. Synonyms: Phoradendron flavens subsp. macrophyllum, Phoradendron macrophyllum, Phoradendron tomentosum subsp. macrophyllum, Phoradendron tomentosum var. macrophyllum Editor: LCrumbacher2012 Etymology: Phoradendron comes from the Greek phor, "a thief," and dendron, "tree," hence "tree thief" because it draws nourishment from its host tree, serotinum means late in flowering or ripening, and macrophyllum means large-leaved.