Just kidding. I don’t know if it is the largest tree in Costa Rica, but it is one of the biggest trees I have ever seen. It is massive. The picturesI took does not do it justice. Here is a little background info for you guys. It is know as an Higueron in Spanish and it is located on the main road from Montezuma to Cabuya. In 2009, INBio (Instituto Nacional de Biodiversidad) awarded this tree with the national prize as “most exceptional” in the country of Costa Rica. Each year there is only one winner.
Another name for this tree is, “Strangler Fig” tree. It grows when a seed is pooped out by a bat or bird and lands inside another tree. It grows very quickly, sending roots down to the earth as quickly as its branches grows upward. When the roots reach the ground they dig in and put on a growth spurt, competing with the host tree for water and nutrients. They also send out a network of roots that encircle the host tree and fuse together. Eventually they squeeze the trunk of its host and cut off its flow of nutrients. In the canopy, the stranger fig puts out lots of leaves that grow thicker than the host tree and rob it of sun light. Eventually the host tree dies from strangulation, insufficient sunlight and root competition; a hollow center is all that remains of the host (blueplanetbiomes.org).
I took a video of my encounter with the tree and was going to upload it, but it came out horrible so it would be pointless. It is difficult to even tell I am filming a tree. It is primarily due to the fact that the tree is so large and I was so close. Here is another picture that I found on a website that puts the tree into perspective.
|I do not know those people|