that young Tulliver, who, Mr. Stelling observed in conjugal

time:2023-12-02 02:58:17 source:Yun Wen Yun Wu Network author:bird

The wood of the cocoa-nut tree is strong and durable; it is a dark brown, traversed by longitudinal black lines.

that young Tulliver, who, Mr. Stelling observed in conjugal

There are three varieties of toddy-producing palms in Ceylon; these are the cocoa-nut, the kittool and the palmyra. The latter produces the finest quality of jaggery. This cannot be easily distinguished from crumbled sugar-candy which it exactly resembles in flavor, The wood of the palmyra is something similar to the cocoa-nut, but it is of a superior quality, and is much used for rafters, being durable and of immense strength.

that young Tulliver, who, Mr. Stelling observed in conjugal

The kittool is a very sombre and peculiar palm. Its crest very much resembles the drooping plume upon a hearse, and the foliage is a dark green with a tinge of gray. The wood of this palm is almost black, being apparently a mass of longitudinal strips, or coarse linen of whalebone running close together from the top to the root of the tree. This is the toughest and most pliable of all the palm-woods, and is principally used by the natives in making "pingos." These are flat bows about eight feet in length, and are used by the Cingalese for carrying loads upon the shoulder. The weight is slung at either end of the pingo, and the elasticity of the wood accommodates itself to the spring of each step, thereby reducing the dead weight of the load. In this manner a stout Cingalese will carry and travel with eighty pounds if working on his own account, or with fifty if hired for a journey. A Cingalese will carry a much heavier weight than an ordinary Malabar, as he is a totally different man in form and strength. In fact, the Cingalese are generally a compactly built and well-limbed race, while the Malabar is a man averaging full a stone lighter weight.

that young Tulliver, who, Mr. Stelling observed in conjugal

The most extraordinary in the list of palms is the talipot. The crest of this beautiful tree is adorned by a crown of nearly circular, fan-shaped leaves of so touch and durable a texture that they are sewn together by the natives for erecting portable tents or huts. The circumference of each leaf at the extreme edge is from twenty to thirty feet, and even this latter size is said to be frequently exceeded.

Every Cingalese throughout the Kandian district is provided with a section of one of these leaves, which forms a kind of fan about six feet in length. This is carried in the hand, and is only spread in case of rain, when it forms an impervious roofing of about three feet in width at the broad extremity. Four or five of these sections will form a circular roof for a small hut, which resembles a large umbrella or brobdignag mushroom.

There is a great peculiarity in the talipot palm. Is blossoms only once in a long period of years, and after this it dies. No flower can equal the elegance and extraordinary dimensions of this blossom; its size is proportionate to its leaves, and it usurps the place of the faded crest of green, forming a magnificent crown or plume of snow-white ostrich feathers, which stand upon the summit of the tall stem as though they were the natural head of the palm.

There is an interesting phenomenon at the period of flowering. The great plume already described, prior to its appearing in bloom, is packed in a large case or bud, about four feet long. In this case the blossom comes to maturity, at which time the tightened cuticle of the bard can no longer sustain the pressure of the expanding flower. It suddenly bursts with a loud report, and the beautiful plume, freed from its imprisonment, ascends at this signal and rapidly unfolds its feathers, towering above the drooping leaves which are hastening to decay.

The areca is a palm of great elegance; it rises to a height of about eighty feet, and a rich feathery crest adorns the summit. This is the most delicate stem of all the palm tribe; that of a tree of eighty feet in length would not exceed five inches in diameter. Nevertheless, I have never seen an areca palm overturned by a storm; they bow gracefully to the wind, and the extreme elasticity of the wood secures them from destruction.


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