Posted by: Matrixity | September 9, 2007

Natal Village: Local Flora and Fauna

The amazon is a place where you can never go hungry. We saw all sorts of trees bearing all sorts of fruits and melons that we had never seen before. We were told they were just about all edible. This next tree is called a cotton tree. We saw them everywhere as we traveled along the river. The first indication that we had of them were blooms floating in the water. At first, us Americans thought that plastic shower scrubbies were floating along in the river. We asked about them and were told that they were actually the cotton blooms from this tree. The red pods burst open and the white cotton blossom comes out. They are soft like cotton and the Amazon villagers use them to make pillows. The blooms are soft and are used to make bedding. This goes back to something that Jonathas told me…that nature supplies everything you will ever need to survive in the Amazon. After being there myself, he is right. Every need can be met there.

Cotton Tree

The Caximguba Tree or Cotton Tree

While we were conducting VBS, Will was sitting in a chair to the right. I saw him eating something so of course I had to go over and ask him what he had. He had a plastic bag of small round yellow fruit. He said one of the men now sitting on the left across from him had climebd a tree off near the right of the center where we were and collected them. They were edible. The fruit was called BACURI.

Bacuri

The bacuri tree is also grown for its fruit, which contains notable amounts of phosphorus, iron, and vitamin C, and is often made into various condiments and beverages. Bacuri seeds, which are brown and fairly oily, are commonly used as a home remedy to treat skin conditions. Its yellowish wood is frequently used as timber.

Well of course I had to try them. I got three from William. I ate one right away. He said there was a technique. I had to open teh fruit just a little and them squeese the white pulp into my mouth. I did that. The pulp was large and hairy with a hard pit in the middle. I could not bite it. I just kind of gummed it. It was both tangy and sweet like a japanese plum. Here is one of the three I got from Will. ( I do not know whose shoe that is standing next to me. )

Bacuri

The rest of mine I put in my pocket and took back to the boat with me to eat later. Will told me that the villager had given him the entire bag. There were many in there and he was taking them back to the boat for us to eat later. What happened to the ones in my pocket? I forgot about it. They were packed up and made it all the way back to the US in my dirty laundry plastic bag. I discovered it in my pocket when I was washing all my travel clothes. What did I do? I threw them away. Then, I instantly knew I should try to grow them here. I went back to the garbage and dug through all sorts of trash. ( I could dry the seeds and grow my own…what was I thinking..to throw it away!!!!!) I never found them. I could have kicked myself. Why did I throw it away! Quite by accident I had brought a plant from the Amazon with me. I am still kicking myself!

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