Called a Miracle Tree
It's been used as erosion control, firewood, green manure, fodder and human food.
Originally from Central America and Mexico, it was brought to the Philippines by the Spanish.
More than likely, it was brought to Okinawa, after World War II.
If, you've ever seen how this island was obliterated, you'd understand why.
Rapid growing trees, were needed to prevent flooding, landslides and some shade.
This miracle tree could do that and more. Like feed cattle and humans.
The plant starts off, looking like some sort of shrub but, turns into a tree really fast.
About the time of year, the little white head flowers bloom, you seen these seed pods.
The photo above, was taken, of a plant that just appeared to be a shrub.
Just out of curiosity, I shot some photos, to get an identification.
It would be nice to know if, those peapod-looking things are edible.
It was one of those days, I went to the Kin Dam, planning on shooting birds.
Eventually, the ospreys arrived overhead and, I forgot all about shooting stupid weeds.
With awesome blue skies and 420MM of lens, what would you have done ?
The choice became, shoot flying osprey birds or trees. Bye bye trees !
Along Comes Coincidence
Somebody on Facebook contacted me asking about edible wild things growing in Okinawa.
The "Suspect" is what, I'll call the individual for now, to maintain their privacy.
Suspect, would like to paddle around the island, like some sort of a survivalist.
And, wanted to know what references, I use to find edible plants, flowers and trees.
There's nothing (English) I've ever found, that covers this subject on Okinawa.
References, I use were provided and, I told the Suspect, "Somebody needs to write a book."
It's a real pain, for me to research, flowers and plants, to see if they are poisonous or, edible.
Publish a book on Okinawa's vegetation and, it might become a million seller.
Even if, it didn't, I'd buy a few copies. Today, I learned something about this tree.
- The leaves provide excellent fodder for livestock and, the wood makes good charcoal
- Young green pods may be opened and, seeds can be eaten cooked or, raw
- Plant a small tree and it could reach 20 feet in height after just 2 or 3 years
- Dry the seeds from mature (brown) pods and, you can make a sort of coffee
- Some crackpot in Florida, cautions against eating any of this plant but, she's wrong
Over at Eat the Weeds
This Gets Exciting !
Now, I have an excuse to get in better shape and learn how to paddle a boat at sea.
Just a few months of weight lifting and doing rowing exercises and, I'll be ready.
When the weather warms up again, I'll get a hold of the survivalist and, off we'll go.
Thing is, I'll have to be in good enough condition, to do all the paddling, by myself.
Just in case, the Suspect gets poisoned and, I have to row the carcass home !
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