“Wisdom is like a Baobab tree; no one individual can embrace it.”
David Lloyd George
Baobab Tree – Tree of Life
It was fascinating to spot these baobab trees in the gorgeous African grasslands of Tarangire National Park, Tanzania. We were bowled over by there unique, ubiquitous appearance, and enthralled by their historical background.
Also known as the Tree of Life, the Baobab tree provides shelter, clothing, food, and water for the animal and human inhabitants of the African savannah regions. The cork-like bark and huge stem are fire resistant and are used for making cloth and rope.
In some African tribes the hollow of the trunk is used to preserve the dead.
Over time, the Baobab has adapted to its environment. It is a succulent, and during the rainy season it absorbs and stores water in its vast trunk, enabling it to produce a nutrient-dense fruit in the dry season. Therefore named “The Tree of Life”.
The leaves, flower and fruits are edible and even medicinal; used liberally by the locals.
We saw weaver birds nesting in plentiful in the ancient, outstretched branches.
Did you manage to spot the nests?
Did you Know
- The Baobab tree can grow to enormous sizes and they may live to be 6,000 years.
- Apparently the oldest Baobab tree is 6000 years old. It is one of the largest baobabs in South Africa, and at a whopping 72 feet high and 155 feet around, the widest on the entire continent. Besides its remarkable dimensions, the baobab is also one of the oldest trees on Earth.
- One ancient hollow Baobab tree in Zimbabwe is so large that up to 40 people can shelter inside its trunk.
Have you ever seen a Baobab tree before? Do you find it eerie and haunting? Or are you enchanted by its sheer magnificence? If you haven’t seen one would you like to some day? Where do you think you could find them apart from Africa?
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