Whenever someone talks about trees, what comes first in your mind?
The refreshing leaves and chanting birds, breezing heavily in the forest full of beautiful colors and long stems.
Trees are vivacious and full of life but unfortunately, they are treated as lifeless objects. The treatment is so common that it is not considered wrong anymore. It is ironic when deaths caused by the deadly viruses are mourned around the world and everyone on earth comes to know about them, but not a single tree makes it to the news when it loses its life.
Only if the trees could scream or show anger by bleeding once hurt, then we might think about them and care for their lives before slicing them so easily. However, there’s no doubt in saying that they are alive, but not all the trees can show what they feel except some.
Bloodwood Tree, a name that instantly brings a lot of confusion and curiosity with it. Bloodwood Tree bleeds when it is cut. Red thick blood starts dripping out from the sliced parts of the tree, making it not only horrible but eventually, not everyone feels comfortable in slicing it more.
This exceptional tree is called Pterocarpus angolensis and its teak is found mainly in the forests of South Africa and is known with different names like Mukwa, Muninga, and Kiaat. These names are given after the horrific dark red sap that comes out of the branches once it is damaged or cut, and appears almost the same as the body of a human or an animal. One of the surprising facts about the Bloodwood Tree is that the sap is sticky and adhesive that heals the wound just like a human. The purpose of giving this tree a bloodwood name is the thick reddish-brown watery substance that accumulates in the trunk and the stem.
Bloodwood Tree and its unusual uses
Bloodwood Tree possesses a towering height of about 18 meters high and bears yellow fruit. The red sap of the tree is used for many purposes. People use the sap in animal fat to make cosmetics to be used on the face and body. The natural sap color is also used to dye. Apart from that, it is believed that the tree, especially the sap, has magical qualities that help in binding the blood relations if they are used in cooking because it resembles blood. Another surprising fact that you may want to know is that it is used in treating several ailments like stabbing pain, worms, malaria, eye problem, stomach problems, black flu, and are supposed to be a medicine that increased the availability of milk in breastfeeding mothers.
Wood from the Bloodwood Tree is carved to make furniture as well as it is one of the high-quality rare wood found in South African forest only. The wood is highly durable and shrinks very less when it is dyed which makes the wood perfect for making boats, bathroom floors, and canoes.
Is the tree bleeding?
Bloodwood Tree is a source of huge fascination for the researchers and the tourists when they visit the African forests. Bloodwood Tree not only drops blood but also helps itself to heal wounds. The magical properties of the sap that helps relations are beyond normal comprehension but there’s a scientific reason behind its bleeding and that is Tannins.
Your mind may also boggle with the confusing fact that how come the tree bleed? Is there any supernatural power that is protecting them from being cut? Let us solve this puzzle to know more about Bloodwood Tree and the science behind this blood-like substance.
Tannins are the compounds that naturally occur inside the seed, stem, and skin of the trees. These compounds help the fruits to get bitter or sweater over time. You may become amazed to know that Tannins are the compound that provides a sour taste to your wine too. Generally, every part of the plant contains some percentage of Tannins such as skin and leaves of the plants where sap is often yellow in color, they contain about 12-20% tannins. But if we talk specifically about the Bloodwood Tree, it contains about 77% tannins in its sap. The plants and trees that contain less amount of the compound have yellow or brown colored sap, and the red thick sap of the Bloodwood Tree is just because of the abundance of the compound.
Having magical features and unique properties in a tree-like Bloodwood Tree is not an everyday thing that we encounter. However, we are usually forced to increase plantations and at many forums voices have been raised against deforestation as well, but nothing is actually done to protect the lives of beautiful nature.