Throughout the Pampas grasslands of Argentina one can find scattered sparsely a large, resilient tree called the Ombu with a beautiful 10 – 15 metre wide canopy and a height of up to 20 metres. They are particularly robust trees capable of sustaining temperatures from below freezing to upper 30°’s C, hurricanes and insect infestations. They are salt resistant and due to their massive water-storing trunks able to withstand drought. There is ongoing research into the medicinal benefits of their seeds and leaves which are a rich source of several ribosome-inactivating proteins which could be used for treatment of fungal, viral and bacterial infections.
The African Baobab is typically found in the dry, hot savannahs of sub-Saharan Africa where they dominate the landscape and reveal the presence of a watercourse from afar. Steeped in legend and superstition they are known for their longevity of up to 1500 years and are valued as sources of food, water, health remedies or as places of shelter. They can grow to between 5 – 25 to metres in height and their bottle shaped trunks reach a diameter of 10 – 14 metres with a wide root span that enables them to survive in dry climates. Their fruit is high in antioxidants, vitamins and calcium and is being imported into developed countries as a “Superfood”.