The Gambia’s All Purpose Trees
Although the tides have slowly brought changes to landscape, they share a few common features everywhere- Gigantic trees emerge from the tangled under-growth, which traits off the further it reaches up their trunks.
The most spectacular tree is the baobab, which is bare a good part of the year. Their formidable ,massive, gnarled trunks, carved by time, just like termite hills, look like humans who have been turned into trees stretching their many arms up to the sky in a gesture of supplication.
Even more than the mangrove, the baobab tree is a gift from nature to mankind. Every part is useful. The fruit, seeds and leaves are used as ingredients in sauces, beverages and medicines and also to make ropes. And time gone by the hollowed-out trunks were used to bury griots.
And, like the mangrove, when one is finished making a list of everything the baobab is used for one thing left: its strangeness. In Africa, this tree plays the role as a symbol of power as the oak does in Europe and north America.