Trees

Adansonia perrieri

In this world there are species of trees that have stories to which magical or mysterious properties are attributed. The baobab refers to a type of tree that was believed to grow the strange asteroid that inhabited The Little Prince. The scientific name of this tree is Adansonia perrieri and its strange shape and gigantic appearance make it a tree with special characteristics. Many people say that it is an upside down tree since it seems that the roots are at the top and the crown is buried in the ground.

In this article we are going to tell you all the characteristics and curiosities of the Adansonia perrieri.

Main features

It is a type of tree that belongs to the Malvaceae family and the Adansonia genus. In this group there are 8 species of baobabs that are known and particular. It is found in the vegetation belonging to North and Central Africa. At first glance it looks like an imposing African tree that has a very thick and large trunk. During maturity, it acquires the shape of a bottle and they are very long-lived trees. His adulthood begins at 200 years of age. The Adansonia perrieri is a tree that can live up to 1,000 years if they live in the proper conditions and not subjected continuously to impacts of humans. Specimens have been detected over 4,000 years old.

Among the characteristics for which this tree stands out, which is its height and diameter of the trunk. Regarding the height, it is not too high compared to other trees, since it usually reaches 30 meters. However, the diameter of the trunk can reach 11 meters. This is not normal for trees with these characteristics. The appearance they have seems to have the roots in the aerial part and the branches are buried in the ground. Its bark is smooth and its wood has fibrous characteristics. Living in these areas of Africa, the species has adapted to the lack of water and abundant droughts. Therefore, we can see that its bark and wood have a low water content.

Description of Adansonia perrieri

The adult specimens of Adansonia perrieri are composed of leaves composed of 5 to 11 leaflets that grow in circles. These leaves are born directly from the petiole. When the specimens are younger, the simple leaves can be seen, but with the passage of time and growth they lobulate. One of the characteristics that makes this tree stand out is that its leaves only sprout in the rainy seasons. That is, in summer in the southern hemisphere and in winter in the northern hemisphere.

The flowers are hermaphroditic and have white petals. Its fruit is a kind of melon with an elongated shape similar to a dry berry. Inside the fruit are the seeds and have a shape very similar to those of a kidney. The seeds are surrounded by a pulp that has a cream color. The texture of this pulp varies depending on the species that we are analyzing.

A very interesting fact about Adansonia perrieri is that the seeds can maintain their capacity to germinate for up to 5 years. This is an adaptation mechanism to drier environments and extreme conditions. And it is that when in an ecosystem there are conditions of extreme temperatures and little rainfall, the species must adapt to be able to survive and reproduce, expanding their area of ​​distribution.

Some specimens of baobabs hollow out inside over the years. They do this in order to create water tanks for storage. The curiosity of these trees is that they can store up to 6 thousand liters of water.

Other species of baobabs

As we have mentioned before, apart from Adansonia perrieri, there are other recognized Adansonia species. 6 of these species grow in Madagascar, one in Central Africa and one in Australia. We are going to analyze which are the main species of baobabs and their main characteristics:

  • Adansonia digitata: it is a traditional tree that grows the semi-arid areas of continental Africa. It has a rounded crown that can be 25 meters high and has one or more secondary trunk.
  • Andasonia gregorii: It is a unique species that grows in Australia. It is smaller in size if we compare it with other Adansonia species. It only reaches 10 meters in height and develops in rocky areas, river beds and other flooded areas. This species needs more water to grow.
  • Adansonia grandidieri: it is a typical baobab from the Madagascar region. It has a narrower trunk than the other species and is the most remote in question in a common way. Its trunk shape is cylindrical and with a smooth texture. It is high in fiber and can be used to form fabrics. The first ones that are extracted from these trees are capable of regenerating themselves with great speed so that no impact is generated on the species. The pulp of the fruit can be eaten fresh or obtained as an oil used for cooking.
  • Adansonia madagascariensis: as its name suggests it is one of the species that grows in the north of Madagascar. Like the previous species, it is shorter and is grown in seedbeds to take advantage of the edible roots. The roots are edible as long as the plant is still young and has tender roots.
  • Adansonia rubrostipa: it is considered the smallest species of all baobabs. It does not exceed five meters in height and its main characteristic is having a cylindrical trunk that narrows before reaching the branches, giving it a bottle-like appearance.
  • Adansonia suaresensis: It is also native to northern Madagascar and usually reaches 25 meters. The trunk is more stylized than the rest, measuring only two meters in diameter.
  • Adansonia za: its trunk is cylindrical and often irregular. It has edible seeds and its trunk is used as a deposit of soil.

Adansonia perrieri and human being

This species is in danger of extinction given the exploitation that humans generate. It is very common for humans to use their bark for making fabrics and it does so at a faster rate than it is capable of regenerating. Once this happens, the trees begin to be damaged and cannot survive.

I hope that with this information you can learn more about Adansonia perrieri and its characteristics.

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