trees

Adansonia digitata (Bombacaceae), the baobab

Adansonia digitata (Bombacaceae), the baobab

Long-lived and respected across much of Africa, the baobab is well-known for the many uses of its trunk, bark, leaves, and fruits. Hollow trunks often provide shelter or holy places, whereas the bark is spongy and can hold large amounts of water. The leaves, as well as the pulp and seeds of the fruits, are edible and high in vitamin C.

The baobab is devoid of leaves for roughly 9 months of the year, but produces yellowish-white pendulous flowers and velvety green fruits in late spring and early summer. The scientific name of the baobab comes from French botanist and taxonomist Michel Adanson (1727-1806), who visited Gorée in the mid-1700s. A small botanical garden located near the center of Gorée is dedicated to Adanson.


Albizzia Lebbek (Leguminosae)

Albizzia Lebbek (Leguminosae)

Albizzia Lebbek on South end of Gorée. I was told that the Wolof name is "Akasia".

Albizzia Lebbek tree laden with fruit
Tree laden with fruit pods

Albizzia Lebbek fruit pods
View of fruit pods; fruits inedible

Albizzia Lebbek fruits
Close-up of fruit pods


Azadirachta indica (Meliaceae), the Neem tree

Azadirachta indica (Meliaceae), the Neem tree

Yaya told me that the Wolof name for this tree is "ni va", and the Pulaar name is "kinini"


Balanites aegyptiaca (Balanitaceae)

Balanites aegyptiaca (Balanitaceae)

I was told that the Wolof name is sumpu and the Pulaar name is "morrtorde". Some part of this tree, the roots, I think, are used to relieve constipation.


Calotropis procera (Asclepiadaceae), the rooster tree

Calotropis procera (Asclepiadaceae), the rooster tree

Calotropis procera at South end of island. Wolof name is "poftan"; Pulaar name is "ba ma mbi". This plant is reported to be poisonous with effects similar to digitalis, but Yaya says that it helps footballers play and run well.

Calotropis procera flowers
Calotropis procera flowers


Carica papaya (Caricaceae), papaya

Carica papaya (Caricaceae), papaya

Papaya tree near the Sea Museum

Carica papaya immature fruits
immature papaya fruits


Cassuarina equisetifolia (Casuarinaceae)

Cassuarina equisetifolia (Casuarinaceae)

Cassuarina equisetifolia tree near football field. Called "filao" in French.

Cassuarina equisetifolia closeup
close-up of leaves

Cassuarina equisetifolia fruits
Cassuarina equisetifolia fruits. These small spiny fruits are somtimes boiled and placed on tooth to relieve toothache.


Citrus aurantifolia (Rutaceae), lime

Citrus aurantifolia (Rutaceae), lime

Citrus aurantifolia tree in Catholic dispensary

Citrus aurantifolia tree
Citrus aurantifolia tree in Catholic dispensary

Citrus aurantifolia - lime close-up
close-up of the lime fruit


Coco nucifera (Arecaceae), the coconut palm

Coco nucifera (Arecaceae), the coconut palm

Coco nucifera - the coconut palm - located in the Catholic dispensary


Cordia sebestena (Boraginaceae)

Cordia sebestena (Boraginaceae)

Cordia sebestena tree near south end of island

Cordia sebestena flowers
close-up of flowers


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