Traveler’s Palm

Though it is not a native of Mexico, but rather of Madagascar, today I decided to share with you something I recently learned about the Traveler´s Palm.  Nowadays it is found not only throughout Mexico, but in the tropics around the world.  I´ve admired it for years for its distinctive symmetry, but I just recently found out it owes its name to two curious adaptations.  The first is that it stores water in its trunk, so that one may quench one´s thirst by perforating it.  The second is that it is usually oriented east to west, thus serving as a primitive compass.

 

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