The Grandidier’s Baobabs (Palmate adansonia) are giant trees indigenous to Africa. Nicknamed the “mother of the forest,” this species of Baobab trees is predominantly found off Africa’s mainland in the island country of Madagascar.
Baobabs can live up to 800 to 1000 years with their unique ability to act as water storage tanks. The trees can store up to 32 gallons of water in their thick trunks.
The heart of many African remedies and folklore, the iconic Baobab is often referred to as the “Tree of Life.” Both the animals and locals tap the trees for H20 during the dry season. The resilient trees are also resistant to termites and fire.
The 80-plus foot trees average a circumference of 108 feet and appear “upside down” since the tops of the trees look like roots. They also feature on a 250-meter path called the Avenue of the Baobabs in Madagascar’s Menabe region. The tree is famous for producing surreal white, bat-pollinated flowers as well.
“A Caliban of a tree, grizzled, distorted old goblin with the girth of a giant, the hide of a rhinoceros, twiggy fingers clutching at empty air and the disposition of a guardian angel,” once wrote the Australian novelist Ernestine Hill about the Baobab’s immensity.
Unfortunately, baobab trees are at risk of extinction due to climate change, with more than ten thousand disappearing yearly.