Platano Orientalis

 

The plane tree is a long-lived, large plant and older specimens occasionally show partially hollowed out trunks, with cavities reaching considerable size. Legend has it that the Roman consul Licinius Mucianus held a banquet for 19 people in a hollow plane tree in Lycia.

The plane tree has always been an image of both wisdom and beauty.

In Kos, Greece, there is a Platanus orientalis about 500 years old, which is thought to have grown from a cutting of the tree under which the father of scientific medicine, Hippocrates, chose to teach about two thousand four hundred years ago. In ancient Rome, however, the philosopher and naturalist Pliny the Elder considered the plane tree a useful remedy for burns, bites, stings, frostbite and infections.

Today, in the village of Chattergam in the Kashmir valley, there is a 627-year-old plane tree, apparently planted in 1374 AD by a travelling Islamic mystic; it has a circumference of 31.85 m at ground level and 14.78 m at breast height.

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VILLA LANTE