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Adventures in Arboriculture

A cypress in the Sahara

ALGERIA | Thursday, 12 March 2009 | Views [2815]

A cypress in the Sahara

A cypress in the Sahara

Eventually I too could see the Cypress, a small dusty green dome poking above the monotonous blackened stone. From this distance it looked like small bush, the majority of its bulk nestled snugly in an old riverbed that had been eroded over the millennia to 10m below the level of the rest of the Plateau.

And then I saw another and another, there were three in this river bed. All incredibly large and old, grand yet sad. Roots exposed, hacked branches, these were the last of what must have once been forest cover, slowly eroded away in the search for building materials and fuelwood. Goats and Rabbits will have grazed the few seeds that manage to germinate in this harsh climate.

Trees are indeed remarkably resilient organisms and yet maybe because of this they are all to often ignored or neglected. It is a shame that despite some useful research projects and several tree surveys there is still no conservation project in place.  

Tags: algeria, cypress, sahara, trees, trekking

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