06 September 2013

Coconut tree's incredible root system

     I've planted hundreds of coconut trees primarily for their looks and their impact on the environment.  My employees and most of the visitors from Bluefields agree the trees are nice to look at but they're mostly interested in the food-producing capabilities of the trees and have advised me that I've planted so many the trees won't produce very well.
     An excellent reason for planting coconut trees is their extensive root system and what that root system does to stabilize the environment.   The trees are lost sometimes:  a poor start that didn't allow the root system to get a good grasp at the tree's beginning;  years of people hacking at them with machetes; encroaching seas that wipe out what the roots hold onto.  
     Here's one that got a bad start and then was chopped at for years.  Planted just to the right of the trunk are two small plugs of a grass that may help this (see May 16, 2013 post about the grass).

     But none of them give up easily.   

Photo by Andre Shank