Collecting the folklore and uses of plants

Tumbleweed Christmas tree

Thanks to Craig Swick who has brought this ‘uniquely Arizona Christmas decoration’ to our attention – the Chandler Christmas tumbleweed tree:

‘The city collects tumbleweeds (they are complaining they are harder to find with the suburbs expanding) which are then spray-painted white and decorated with glitter.’

Apparently this tradition started in 1957, and has since become ‘a long-standing holiday season tradition’.

Tumbleweed is a name given to a number of plants which become detached from the soil and blow around in the wind, this tumbleweed is Salsola tragus, also known as Russian thistle, native to Eurasia and unintentionally introduced to North America in the 1870s.  It is now considered to be a noxious weed.

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