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Around Wyoming brings you news from around the state, keeping you informed with brief updates of stories you may have missed.

Around Wyoming, Friday, December 22

In the spirit of the season, here are some fun facts about some of the decorative plants you may be seeing.

According to the American Christmas Tree Association, approximately 25-30 million real Christmas trees are sold in the U.S. every year. And there are about 350 million trees growing on Christmas tree farms across the country. For every one tree that’s harvested, two to three seedlings are planted the following spring.

The National FFA Association writes that the bright, colorful part of a poinsettia plant isn’t, in fact, a flower. It’s a modified leaf called a bract. But, the plant does have flowers - they are the small, yellow part in the center of the bracts. It’s celebrated on December 12, which is National Poinsettia Day. The date marks the death of Joel Roberts Poinsett, the South Carolina congressman credited with bringing the poinsettia to the country from its native home of Mexico.

According to the National Wildlife Foundation, mistletoe got its name from the fact that it tends to grow where birds leave droppings. Ancient Anglo-Saxons noticed this and named it using words that derived from the words meaning dung and twig. Quite literally, the name means “dung-on-a-twig.” Think about that next time you get ready for a smooch under the festive green plant.

Ivy started as a science news intern in the summer of 2019 and has been hooked on broadcast ever since. Her internship was supported by the Wyoming EPSCoR Summer Science Journalism Internship program. In the spring of 2020, she virtually graduated from the University of Wyoming with a B.S. in biology with minors in journalism and business. When she’s not writing for WPR, she enjoys baking, reading, playing with her dog, and caring for her many plants.

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