1. Elgaisma
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    Elgaisma Contributing Member Contributor

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    Palm Trees/tropical plants and the senses

    Discussion in 'Research' started by Elgaisma, Aug 4, 2010.

    How do palm trees assault the senses is it just physical?

    Any other tropical plants you like what do you like about them, how do they affect your senses?
     
  2. Wreybies
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    Wreybies The Ops Pops Operations Manager Staff Contest Administrator Supporter Contributor

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    Hmmm. Palm trees? Assault?

    Palms are rather passive as trees go. They are not so prone to making noise in the wind as true trees (palms are not true trees as they have a completely vascular trunk down to the center). They have a variety of different fruits they produce depending on the species. Only a few being edible. Many species have spikes and thorns, especially those which do not grow so tall. Some drop their fronds cleanly as they grow while others keep them hanging and dry like a crispy dress.

    Other tropical plants? In the undergrowth of the tropical forest, the lower plants tend to have larger more succulent leaves. Vines are predominant and take advantage of the effort the trees have already made to get higher into the sky. Many of these kinds of vines have roots that are edible. The predominant smell in the tropical forest is from the earth itself, especially after it rains. It has a musty, heavy smell that sometimes comes in with higher, acrid notes.

    My parents have a few acres of land here in Puerto Rico, half of which is still under natural growth with a stream that runs through the center of it.
     
  3. madhoca
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    madhoca Contributing Member Contributor

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    I've been physically assaulted by palm trees. Once we were lying on a beach when a huge coconut thunked down into the sand inches from my face. And I'm always getting my clothes caught on the little spikey palms at the end of my road just as I'm trying to cross. Their horrid sticking-out leaves have edges like a miniature saw.
     
  4. Elgaisma
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    Elgaisma Contributing Member Contributor

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    Thank you lol Madhoca that is perfect. In the North of Scotland tropical plants happen in green houses etc. And when I went to the US I was in the Mojave Desert for most of it and not much of anything grows there.

    I need to introduce a more 3D feel to my Island, right now it barely gets mentioned. Which worked in my first book. But they are travelling now.
     
  5. jwilder
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    jwilder Member

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    I was in Hawaii a few years back and the thing I remember most about the tropical plants were the smell of the flowers and bright, vibrant colors. Oh, and the vines. Lots of vines. Everywhere. The smells were amazing. Some were light and clean, others were almost cloying and sickly-sweet. The mix was almost intoxicating. Colors were just eye-popping. It was incredible to see real live plants that could produce such geometrically perfect shapes and neon-like colors and blooms.
     
  6. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    not so, wrey!... i live with them, here on my tropical island and they can be quite noisy in the wind, as the fronds make anywhere from a mild clacking noise, to a frenzied rattle... they're much louder than any of the 'true trees' of all varieties i've lived with in temperate climes...

    but as far as any other senses, unless you touch them or eat them, they're neutral... there's no definable smell...

    in re all the many other tropical plants and trees here, the main thing that i love is the heady scent of flowering shrubs like plumeria and the overall aroma of the jungly growth when it rains... it always reminds me of a cornfield... seems to be the same smell... also close to newly-mown grass...
     

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