It is Friday, time for the Spice of the week, but we have something special for you today. We would like to introduce a new BLE topic describing various poisonous species from different parts of the world – Poisonous Nature.
You can find more than 30 species belonging to different groups, which you may not have had any idea could be poisonous. More species will be added regularly in the future, and we will inform you about each of them. The images and illustrations link to their variable sources: BHL, EOL or Europeana (including content from the OpenUp! project). This new topic also includes more than 90 books describing the species in more detail.
Here is the first highlight from Poisonous Nature, one of the symbols of Christmas, which brings fortune and blessing to your homes – European Mistletoe (Viscum album). Did you know that mistletoe contains the poison lectin, which strengthens the body's immune reaction against cancer and even slows tumor growth?
Mistletoe is an angiosperm, living as a hemi-parasite on other plants. It uses its special root-like organs (haustoria) to steal nutrients, water and minerals from its host. As opposed to true parasites, it also uses photosynthesis to create its own organic substances. There is only one species of mistletoe in Europe: European or Common Mistletoe (Viscum album). It can grow on deciduous or coniferous trees, dependent on the subspecies. The poisonous qualities of mistletoe have not been conclusively proven; only larger quantities are known to cause diarrhea and stomachaches. Only in nursing infants can poisoning have more severe consequences.
You can find more about the mistletoe on BLE Poisonous Nature. We wish you great Christmas Holidays and of course, stay tuned!!