Fun for Bob,
Gary Smith, Dec 19, 2007
Baobabs are indeed something else. Not too long ago I bought a book
baobabs, entitled "The Remarkable Baobab" by Thomas
Apparently, baobabs are probably not as old as their great size
One variety of baobabs, Adansonia grandidieri, which are found in
Madagascar, are my favorites. The Avenue of the Baobabs in
features this variety and is a pretty famous gathering place for
photographers and tourists.
James Parton, Dec 19, 2007
Baobabs are really cool. I have spent some time reading on them.
might not be the giants of Africa or Madagascar but Florida has some
in the Miami area. If I had the cash I would drive down there just
This one looks like a water bottle with limbs. There actually
truth to that...
Bob Van Pelt, Dec 20, 2007
Despite their oddity - they can be very impressive. I
measured two trees in South Africa that required more than 110 feet
of tape just to get a circumference. Only one other tree can
make that claim! It is also one of only two angiosperms accurately
recorded to over 1000 years of age - some are most certainly over
1500 years. I does not make what you might call wood. A tree
can be girdled and not die. You can also hack into one, pull
out a wad of wet, spongy material, and drink from it. One of the
largest known died a few years ago. Within two years the dead
tree had dissolved into a pile with the consistency of wet toilet
paper! A strange tree indeed.
Travis Morse, Dec. 20, 2007
Amazing picture, amazing species! Does anyone know how the
ancient baobabs were measured? I have heard that due to their
unusual composition, the wood does not produce any kind of
measurable growth rings. From my Internet search this morning I
found out there is debate about the species having annual growth
rings and that X-ray densitometry is useless due to the absorbent
nature of the fibrous wood which distorts when dried. Of interest, I
found this title and abstract at < http://www.icuc-iwmi.org/files/News/baobab%20biblio/ad-gen2.htm>
Wilson, R.T. 1988. Vital statistics of the baobab (Adansonia
digitata ). African Journal of Ecology 26(3):197-206.
Five populations in Zambia, Sudan, Mali, Kenya and Tanzania were
measured to establish distribution of girth size classes. Absolute
growth rates from rings or from empirical observations in each
area were used to convert size into age classes. Baobab
populations appear to be much younger than has generally been
believed and only very few trees live to ages in excess of 400
yr. Instantaneous mortality rates vary from 1.1 to 3.7% per
year in the different areas. A lack of recruitment to the youngest
age classes is caused by elephants in some areas but land-use
changes due to increasing human populations and increased domestic
animal numbers may also be responsible for low recruitment rates
in other areas.
James Parton, Dec 20, 2007
I will upload to the file page a couple of pictures of the Miami
Florida Baobab trees. These are ones that we can easily visit.
I cannot take credit for the Baobab pictures. I found them on the
I would love to see them though.
James Parton, Dec 21, 2007
Including the Baobab, the largest girthed trees I know of are the
Monteczuma Cypresses. The Tule Tree in Mexico is the largest I know
of. Another one is the fused trunked European Chestnut called "
tree of a thousand horses ". With the Baobabs these are
reported to be
the largest girthed trees known. The Giant Sequoias are just behind
Enjoy the links.
Boabab Tree - copyright Axel
Baobab Tree in Senegal (copyright Axel)
A good Baobab link:
Marcboston Tue, 17 Feb 2009
I just uploaded a picture of an African Baobab I took some
while on my honeymoon. It was a really nice specimen. I
no idea how to post the picture to this page but it is here.