A sense sublime
Of something far more deeply interfused,
Whose dwelling is the light of setting suns,
And the round ocean and the living air,
And the blue sky, and in the mind of man:
A motion and a spirit, that impels
All thinking things, all objects of all thought,
And rolls through all things.
I am always astounded, amazed and left breathless when I reflect on nature. Nature creates nurtures and sustains all of us. It continuously gives of itself and requests nothing in return. Nature was here before us and will be after we have left the scene.
My amazement for nature soared to a new height today when I came across certain plants that have characters that are beyond belief. From the tree that blooms once every hundred years to another that can store up to 100,000 liters of water in its trunk. These plants show up a side of nature little considered. And that is its ability to endure.
The baobab : There are 9 known species, of these 6 are native to Madagascar, 2 are native to mainland Africa and the Arabian peninsula and 1 is native to Australia. Now comes the fun part. They are known to grow as high as 30 meters and have trunk diameters as much as 11 meters. The largest known baobab tree today has a circumference of 34m at chest level. They store water in their trunk and because of drought conditions can store as much as 100,000L (26000 US gallons) of water. That is slightly above the volume of water in a standard 20ft by 30ft by 5ft swimming pool. As of 2010 the potential international market for consumer products made from seeds or dried fruit powder from this tree was put at 1billion dollars per year.
The Madagascar Palm: Surprisingly only discovered in 2008. It is known to die after fruiting. What is even more amazing is the fact that it flowers only once every 100 years. Interestingly there are fewer than 100 Madagascar palms in existence today.
The Night Blooming Cereus: It is known to flower after a year’s growth, but to catch a glimpse of its flower has always been tricky. This is because it only blooms at night.
There are so many other interesting plants that nature has sustained and nurtured over the millennia. From the Venus fly trap to the Sheep-eating plant, from the Chinese bamboo( which takes 5 years to germinate and when it does it grows up to 90m in 5 months) to the kurinji plant that blooms once every 12 years. The list is endless.
All of them evidence of nature’s ability to spawn rare beauties that we may never fully comprehend. Why then is it so difficult to relate with nature in a mutually beneficial way, when all it does is give without counting the cost.