Monday, March 31, 2008

The Cicadas Say the Hot Season is Coming

While the temperatures have still been relatively cool, in the mid 80s, and we’ve still had some rain, we can tell the hot and dry season is coming. We’ve been hearing the cicadas at night, and just this morning Tom noticed that the yellow-flowered Cortez tree is in bloom again. I swore the Cortez trees were blooming earlier this year than last, but Selwyn assured me that this is when they always bloom, and the past year has just flown by.

This is a strangler tree. Small strangler vines take root in the branches of another tree, and start sending shoots down the host tree’s trunk and into the ground. The strangler vines grow and grow and surround the tree, and eventually the host tree is killed. In time, the dead host rots away and leaves a hollow tree of strangler. The holes you can see here aren’t rot, they’re just gaps in where the vines didn’t connect as they formed their own trunk.

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