What Makes Palm Trees Strong To Withstand Hurricanes

Can palm trees be the answer to the mechanism to save infrastructures from natural calamity?

Hurricanes are the wrath of nature every person who has experienced coastal life fears. Footages of flying roofs and uprooting trees during a storm can have a long term effect on the terrain and life of the surrounding area. Scientists have been trying to make homes and buildings that can cope with calamities like flash floods, earthquake and hurricanes, and the inspiration for it might surprise you! Palm trees!

Yes, you read that right! Hurricanes have intense airwaves that lash out water from streets making trees uproot and toss around the ground. What makes palm trees rigid to hold their lands while the storm unravels is their mechanism and shape. Nature created the best of its engineering to create slender trees of the Arecaceae family. They have a distinct feature that helps them survive through cyclones and tsunamis.

Rambling Roots-

Most palm trees have large and short roots spread across levels of soil to secure a large amount of soil around the root ball. As long as the ground is relatively dry when the tree is growing, it creates a heavy anchor to widen the network with rich base roots.

Wiry Trunk-

While the trunks of pine and oak grow in radial patterns, it creates annual rings of hollow cylinders every year to allow room in the middle. The cylindrical shape offers excellent stability to bend and flex without snapping. If you ever find a broken palm tree, no other tree could have survived the storm either.

Designed Leaves-

While most trees rely on the canopy of branches, twigs and leaves to grab sunlight, it benefits in making food for the tree to grow and collect water for the plant. During harsh weather, it is the canopy of the leaves that get affected the most. The leaves tend to flow with the strong air currents making twigs and branches snap along with it.

A palm tree, on the other hand, has widespread branches with a flexible central spine. It can be thought of as giant loose feathers. In nice weather, the fronds spread out and make a delicate canopy, but when a storm approaches, they fold up, leaving lesser resistance against elements to clash with.

Even though the leaves also snap at the heavy storms in some cases, it is easier to replace and protect the whole tree in turn.

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