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Tenerife Times Home arrow Tenerife Attractions arrow Northern Tenerife arrow The Tenerife Dragon Tree
The Tenerife Dragon Tree PDF Print E-mail
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Written by Michael Hopkins   
Tuesday, 17 June 2008

Tenerife has probably one of the worlds most bizarre tourist attractions, namely the Dragon Tree found at Icod de Los Vinos. I’m pretty sure that there can’t be many places in the world where a single tree is a tourist attraction, maybe one of the Great Red Wood’s or the ‘Timberland’ tree that can be found in America but that’s about it. I can’t think of many more.

The Dragon Tree, Icod de Los Vinos, Tenerife 

The Dragon Tree in Icod de Los Vinos is said by many to be between 1000 and 1500 years old however this is more of myth and legend than truth. Whilst its exact age is not known it is thought by most scientists to be around 650 years old and is often described as the oldest tree in the world.

Unlike normal trees where the age can be determined by the number of rings on the trunk, the Dragon Tree does not display this type of growth, instead you have to count the number of forks on the trunk as a fork in the trunk occurs each time the tree comes into flower and so represents the best way to age the tree.

The Dragon Tree gets its name because of the resin that is secreted when the bark or the leaves are cut, it is said to be the dried blood of Dragons and was used in ancient times as cures for ailments.

The next time you are in Tenerife on your holidays, why not hire a car and take a trip to Icod de Los Vinos and take a look at the oldest tree in the world.

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Comments

Greetings! My great-grandfather was an amateur naturalist living in Buffalo, NY (USA) in the late nineteenth century. He kept a journal, a large part of which was dedicated to his study of and fascination with trees. In it, he describes many notable tree specimens around the world including the famous 'Dragon' tree of Tenerife. He states that this tree was considered by scientists of that era to be possibly as old as 10,000 years, but it was toppled by a hurricane that struck the Canary Islands in the year 1868, and in the year 1896 the tree no longer showed any sign of life.. Could it be another tree at Tenerife he was reporting on? Any information you could provide would be greatly appreciated. Many thanks.

Posted by mark hausle, on 08/20/2008 at 14:17

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