Native from my home country is the Coconut tree, or Cocos Nucifera, it is a national pride that Filipinos called it ” the tree of Life” .We called it locally “Niyog” and it´s grown 70% there.Living far away from home made me appreciate this wonderful tree as ever. I love dishes with coconut milk, and not just Curry but only the yummy desserts made out of pure creamy coconut milk. Coconut macarons? or our famous “Halo Halo” with fresh coconut pieces, or better it´s nutritious juice.
I grew up seeing it every single day. I see them lined up in our backyards and in planted in almost everywhere. I even thought before that it´s the national tree of the Philippines because it´s practically everywhere. This tree became somewhat special to me because living as an expat, I truly miss seeing and eating (the real) coconut. Just look at its unique features—long stemmed, lanky and tall, high, exuding a freedom spirit with its outgoing leaves, and yet the surprisingly abundant produce it can have. From its roots up to its single leaf, something is always made out of it.Others may see Coconut tree as only part of a summer vacation memory , “yes, a tropical tree, growing only in the islands in south east Asia…or in Carribean, “or how do you really get to eat the coconut fruit?” ” or ” Should I drink a fresh coconut juice from the coconut fruit itself..?!”
A tropical beach destination?—It´s got to have lots and lots of coconut trees there…or maybe others mistaken it as Palm trees.These type of palm trees always give away that it´s Asian.
I remembered an old neighbour of ours before ( v. long time ago…!) , I think I was 8 or 10 years old.He used to climb a cocunut tree to get some coconuts and we would wait there on the ground with a spoon in our hands.We love drinking it´s fresh juice, it´s yummy and cooling.
Coco water is regarded as “a natural isotonic beverage” that has “the same level of electrolytic balance that we have in our blood.” “It’s the fluid of life, so to speak,”.
If you would looked at the trunk of the Coconut photo below, you would notice the gaps made by a big & long sharp knife , in our local dialect, we called this knife with a wooden base “Sundang“. In Tagalog we called this “Itak“. These gaps are made for practical reasons, for anyone to enable them to climb that steep height. So when you see a coconut without these knife gaps, they haven´t been climbed probably! There is even a crazy game popularized in Philippines called ” Coconut Climbing”. As the name says, it´s an under time pressure, whoever climbs it faster, he/she wins.
The famous legend about coconut is that they say it originates from the story of a man who was despised and cursed by the parents of the woman he loved. They don´t want him to marry their daughter so they cursed him.He was cursed to become an Earthworm. One time during a heavy flood, he was found by the woman he loved and although she was totally shocked what happened to him, he asked her to bury him in the ground. He wanted to watch over her for the rest of his life and be there for her although he is not a man anymore.After the woman buried him under the ground, the coconut tree sprouted. That´s how they say how it got its long, lanky trunk and wide leaves that provides endless shades. Coconut tree also symbolizes resilience, tenacity and faithfulness. To think that Philippines is always frequented by typhoons and storms and huge amount of Monsoon rains, coconut tree withstand all these natural challenges and standing tall and proud.
Living here in Germany, I see many plant lovers creating their own Urban Green Jungle. My dream is to have a coconut tree or plant but I know it´s not going to happen. I would just settle for pots made out of coconuts and probably lie on mats made out of coconut leaves.
Have you ever tasted a real coconut meat? or drink from the coconut fruit itself?
This post is inspired by “Trees” & part of this Month´s themed “TreeSquares” hosted by Becky of the Life of B., .I would be sharing more tropical trees in the coming days that I have in my Archives so I hope you keep on reading them. It´s a pleasure sharing about them.
Until then, Happy Weekend. Tschüss!