Discovering green jewels
Surviving in a crazy, loud, hectic and crowded city makes you really re-evaluate your sanity as you get older. There is only so much late night shopping, drinking, eating and dancing you can do. The novelty of being able to shop for anything you fancy wears off. And there are only some many occasions where being stuck under someone’s armpit in rush hour on the Tube can be tolerated. Sound familiar? I recently have often wondered if that’s part of getting older or simply living in a city for too long.
You suddenly crave space, nature and periods of quiet and calm. The feeling of standing at the seaside, listening to the waves, seagulls or birds and looking towards the horizon is just priceless. It’s a liberating feeling that you just cannot replicate in a spa or even at home. Adding green jewels to this mental picture aka palm trees and the inner balance quickly resets from personal experience. I’ve always loved palm trees – an understated peace of nature but giving a sense of tropical resilience and serenity.
There are just under 3,000 variety of palm trees. Coming in a number of shapes and sizes they are a source of beauty, nutrition, hydration and shade. They even end up as pieces of fashion in forms of hats, decoration around your home such as bowls, mats and frames and more practical uses such as brooms.
Coconut water is a source of potassium for a healthy heart and good muscular and skeletal function. It helps with lowering blood pressure and hydrating your body.
One “palm” which has always fascinated me is the the travellers palm – often seen in Grenada. It actually comes from the bird of paradise family but let’s not get fussy – it looks very much like a palm. I was 9 years old when I first came across it and fascinated when my friend cut into the stem and water just oozed out like out of a tap.
It got its name because the sheaths of the stems holding rainwater, which supposedly could be used as an emergency drinking supply for needy travellers. The enormous paddle-shaped leaves are borne on long petioles, in a distinctive fan shape aligned in a single plane.
Did you know the palm has a male and a female version of the travelers palm tree?!
The males are a single tree with no flowers or pods growing out of the middle of the fan. Whereas the females have all that and sometimes end up growing a second or third complete fan from the same trunk.
Apart from just cruising round the island to soak in these lush green beauties you can learn and experience about different varieties at The Tower Estate. Take a tour of the botanical gardens around this estate.
Belmont Estate, often visited for its chocolate or its restaurant, has amazing gardens worth visiting which showcase beautiful palm trees.
Ready to escape the madness and soak in some peace and beauty yet?