- On a steep hillside along the spectacularly rugged Mendocino County coast, is an 11-acre grove of ancient redwood trees with twisted trunks and branches that shoot out wildly in all directions as if frozen in the middle of a conniption fit. The contorted trees, most of which are 500 years old, survived only because their bent wood could not be turned into lumber, and they are a biological gold mine to conservationists.
The baobab, also known as "the Tree of Life" for its vitality and longevity, grows in African and Indian savannas. Its height can reach up to 25 meters. Baobabs can live for several thousand years. The secret of the baobab's surviving in harsh environments is that it has little wood fibre but a large water storage capacity. It is able to hold up to 300 litres of water. In the wet months water is stored in its thick, corky, fire-resistant trunk for the nine dry months ahead.