Friday, April 15, 2011

Baobab Trees











Some interesting facts about these trees that grow prolifically in the area of Messina on the border to Zimbabwe where Cules will be working for the next few weeks....Adansonia is a  genus of eight species of tree,six native to Madagascar,one native to mainland Africa and the Arabian peninsula and one to Australia. Baobabs store water inside their swollen trunks, up to 120 000litres to endure the harsh drought conditions particular to each region. Leafs are used as a leaf vegetable and the fruit is very nutritious,possibly having more vit. c than oranges and exceeding the calcium content of cows  milk! The fruit can be used to produce cream of tartar. Locals also cook the fruit in sugar and sell it as a sweet and sour candy.

18 comments:

  1. WOW! Those trunks are huge.

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  2. I've always been fascinated by Baobabs..seeing them in real life context is wonderful. Thanks for sharing!

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  3. that first shot is pure art! (thanks, cules!) wow!

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  4. These are so beautiful and the trunks so huge! Love that first picture.

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  5. Amazing trees. Thanks for the background information too as well as the excellent photos.

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  6. The pictures are beautiful, and that is such interesting information!

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  7. Was wondering if the trees were very old because of the size of trunks. But they are full of water!!!!
    Stunning photos!

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  8. You are making me home sick! I wonder how many times I drove through Messina back and forth from what was then Rhodesia to RSA. Countless me thinks! Diane

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  9. I always wanted to see one of these in nature, but this will have to be good enough for me. As an asides, I checked my flag counter today and I have almost as many visitors from South Africa as I do from Sweden, my native country. I began blogging so friends and relatives there could check in, but I guess they don't. Oh, well, I am so glad you and a few other South African friends stop by.

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  10. Hooray! Thank you Cules for taking these pictures and to you for posting them Liesl! They are each so beautiful - great pictures! I recognise orange trees in the second picture. Baobabs are my favourite trees. I have a picture of one on my blog sidebar. They remind me to be mighty like a baobab and many other things! I remember seeing many in my childhood in this same area travelling from Zim to SA. I am more familiar though with seeing them in the Kariba area in Zim. When I was last back in Zim visiting family 3.5 years ago (we have lots of close family still there including both our sets of parents) I loved seeing the trees in the Kariba area and also southern Zambia. There were also lots of children along the roadside in Zambia selling the fruits. Such incredible, fascinating trees. Thanks for this post, Liesl. Ahh, to be home - one day...

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  11. Jim,these trees are indeed hundreds of years old when they reach that size! I have often wondered what some of those trees must have seen eons ago!
    Inger, there are surprisingly few South African bloggers out there,especially on the subjects I like to read about! I have googled everything I could think of and nada...So happy that you enjoy my posts as I do indeed yours!
    Kelly,it is amazing to see such a well run citrus farm in the middle of such an arid area! Can't wait for Noah's picture!

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  12. Great pictures! I've read about baobab trees in books but didn't really know what they looked like.

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  13. I love baobab leaves, they are very popular here and make a great substitute for spinach. The fruits are wondering too! Which of the eight species do you have down there in the Southern Africa? Your trees look broader at the trunk than ours here in West Africa.

    Warm greetings from Niger!

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  14. Esther: The trees growing in Africa are all from the genus Adonsonia Digitata as I understand it. I have never tried eating the leaves,will have Cules bring me some next weekend! The ones in Madagaskar are very different looking to ours!

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  15. We used to have one very tall tree in front of our house that I called the "African Tree". I don't know really why I called it that except that it evoked images of Africa, perhaps from having watched Merryl Streep make the country so beautiful for us northerners!

    Now.. these pictures prove me right! Our tree was not a Adansonia, but it did look a lot like this. Simply fantastic.

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  16. That is so interesting to me..didn't know all of that..they are such a beautiful tree! ;D

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  17. Very nice blog
    http://herbalplantslanka.blogspot.com/

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Hi,thank you for stopping by "A Little African Magic" and joining our adventures in South Africa. I do enjoy and appreciate to hear from each and every one of you!