The baobab is an iconic tree of the African continent, and it is usually found in extremely dry and arid regions. It is also called the “tree of life” because it provides shelter, clothing, food, and water in the African savannah regions. Baobabs can live for up to 3,000 years and grow as high as 50 m. According to a study published in the journal Nature Plants, nine of the oldest 13 baobab trees and five of the six biggest ones have died in the past 12 years. Some were in between the ages of 1,100 and 2,500 years. The researchers expressed their sorrow toward the trees, which have been a source of local stories and legends. They described the accident as “an event of an unprecedented magnitude.” The cause of these deaths is still unclear. However, the researchers believe that climate change is the main culprit. The study’s author wrote, “We suspect that the demise of monumental baobabs may be associated at least in part with significant modifications of climate conditions that affect southern Africa in particular.”
Christine Kim Staff Reporter (firstname.lastname@example.org)
1. What is another name for the baobab tree? Why?
2. How long can baobab trees live?
3. What is the assumption of researchers about the cause of baobab trees' deaths?
1. How can climate change affect trees?
2. What are some reasons humans cut down trees?
3. Have you ever planted anything? When and how?