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Unique Trees of Socotra

Friday Tree Facts – unique trees of Socotra

The island of Socotra, situated in the Indian Ocean between Somalia and Yemen,  has been geographically isolated from mainland Africa for the last 6 or 7 million years. Like the Galapagos Islands, this island is teeming with 700 extremely rare species of flora and fauna, a full 1/3 of which are found nowhere else. It’s often been described as “the most alien-looking place on Earth”.




Some of its endemic trees are downright Seussian:


The poisonous bark of the “desert rose” is often tied around the necks of herd animals in an effort to protect them from predators.



It appears to require no soil, simply rooting itself directly into the rock.

Others are weirdly majestic:



Dragon’s Blood trees are reminiscent of flying saucers, or giant mushrooms.



And few would look out of place on a “Land of the Lost” stage set:


cucumber tree1


the rare Cucumber Tree really is related to the pickles in that jar in your fridge.

This is just a small sampling – check out more on Socotra at National Geographic’s slide show here.


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Friday Tree Facts – unique trees of Socotra


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