Send a Tweet
Most Popular Choices
Share on Facebook 1 Share on Twitter 1 Printer Friendly Page More Sharing
General News   

The Giving Trees: Five Trees You've Never Heard of that Are Helping to End Hunger

By       (Page 1 of 3 pages)     (# of views)   1 comment

Crossposted from the Worldwatch Institute's Nourishing the Planet.

We know that trees can help mitigate climate change by sequestering carbon dioxide from the earth's atmosphere. But what is less widely understood is how many of these trees can also help to bring an end to hunger and poverty.

 

Today, Nourishing the Planet takes a look at five varieties of tree that you have likely never heard of, but that are helping to alleviate hunger and poverty and protect the environment.

 

1.     Black Plum: Black plums are common across tropical sub-Saharan Africa's coastal savannas and savanna woodlands. The black plum tree is not domesticated, but it is widely utilized and protected, and is often found at the center of West African villages. The black plum is useful in agroforestry and organic farming. It is nitrogen fixing, meaning it adds nitrogen to the soils it grows in. Whether the tree is growing in fields or along boundaries, crops can benefit from natural soil nutrients. Leaves from the tree are also used as nutrient-rich mulch.

 

Best Way to Eat It: The fruit makes good quality jellies and jams, as well as a black molasses. A beverage similar in flavor to coffee is also made from roasted fruits. Young, leafy shoots from the tree are picked, boiled, seasoned, and eaten like spinach.

 

Black Plum in Action: Black plum trees' fruit and leaves support wildlife and its nitrogen fixing abilities encourage soil health. Its deep roots protect soils from erosion, benefitting other plant life and helping rebuild degraded ecosystems.

 

2.     Ebony: Ebony wood is world renowned for its dense fine-grain quality and rich dark color. It is prized for use in musical instruments, such as pianos and violins, and is considered superior for woodcarving. The tropical species--including Africa's most common, the jackalberry (Diospyros mespiliformis)--produce the finest ebony wood and a fruit akin to the persimmon.

 

Best Way to Eat It: The fruits are commonly eaten fresh, dried, or pulped for sauces. They can be used in porridges and toffee, brewed into beer, fermented into wine, and distilled into an ebony brandy. In Namibia they are made into a hot liqueur called ombike.

 

Next Page  1  |  2  |  3

 

Rate It | View Ratings

Danielle Nierenberg Social Media Pages: Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in       Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in       Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in       Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

Danielle Nierenberg, an expert on livestock and sustainability, currently serves as Project Director of Nourishing the Planet for the Worldwatch Institute, a Washington, DC-based environmental think tank. Her knowledge of factory farming and its (more...)
 
Related Topic(s): , Add Tags
Add to My Group(s)
Go To Commenting
The views expressed herein are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this website or its editors.
Writers Guidelines
Contact AuthorContact Author Contact EditorContact Editor Author PageView Authors' Articles
Support OpEdNews

OpEdNews depends upon can't survive without your help.

If you value this article and the work of OpEdNews, please either Donate or Purchase a premium membership.

STAY IN THE KNOW
If you've enjoyed this, sign up for our daily or weekly newsletter to get lots of great progressive content.
Daily Weekly     OpEdNews Newsletter
Name
Email
   (Opens new browser window)
 

Most Popular Articles by this Author:     (View All Most Popular Articles by this Author)

Going Green: 12 Simple Steps for 2012

Global Expansion Of High-Speed Railroads Gains Steam

The Giving Trees: Five Trees You've Never Heard of that Are Helping to End Hunger

New Cassava Varieties Save Zanzibar's Food Security

Agriculture: The Unlikely Earth Day Hero

World Grain Production Down in 2010, But Recovering