If you’re off to an Island for a Survival Trip, whether it’s for fun or a disaster that forces you to travel on a barren Island without Tom Hanks, One factor you may notice on each Island Coasts is Coconut Tree. Coconut is in itself a multi-use Survival tool. From food to shelter or weapon, there are several coconut tree uses. Let’s first see what’s a coconut really.
The coconut tree (Cocos nucifera) is a member of the family Arecaceae (palm family) and the only species of the genus Cocos. The term coconut can refer to the whole coconut palm or the seed, or the fruit, which, botanically, is a drupe, not a nut. A spelling cocoanut is an archaic form of the word. The term is derived from the 16th-century Portuguese and Spanish word coco meaning “head” or “skull”, from the three indentations on the coconut shell that resemble facial features.
The coconut palm grows on sandy soils and is highly tolerant of salinity. It prefers areas with abundant sunlight and regular rainfall (1500 mm to 2500 mm annually), which makes colonizing shorelines of the tropics relatively straightforward. Coconuts also need high humidity for optimum growth, which is why they are rarely seen in areas with low humidity. However, You can find them in humid areas with low annual precipitation such as in Karachi, Pakistan, which receives only about 250 mm of rainfall per year but is consistently warm and humid.
Coconut palms require warm conditions for successful growth and are intolerant of cold weather. Some seasonal variation is tolerated, with good growth where mean summer temperatures are between 28 and 37 °C, and survival as long as winter temperatures are above 4–12 °C; they will survive brief drops to 0 °C. Severe frost is usually fatal, although they have been known to recover from temperatures of −4 ° C. They may grow but not fruit properly in areas with insufficient warmth, such as Bermuda.
The main limiting factor for most locations which satisfy the rainfall and temperature requirements is canopy growth, except those locations near coastlines, where the sandy soil and salt spray limit the growth of most other trees.
Coconut tree Uses in Survival Situation
1. Food for Survival
Coconut is rich in fat and carbohydrate as well as micronutrients such as vitamins and minerals. If you are hungry then a single fully grown coconut fruit can keep you full for many hours. Many survival experts say that in a coastal survival situation, you can rely on coconut water for your thirst and hydration. You can easily find this water in an immature coconut fruit.
Building a shelter is one of the most important milestones for an emergency situation as It protects you from harsh weather conditions. broad and dense coconut leaves can provide you an effective cover for your shelter.You can make your shelter between two nearby coconut trees so that you don’t have to use extra pillars. if you can manage to cut a tree, you are lucky to find a trunk, you can also use it as a lumber for your shelter.
3. Use as a rope
In countries like India, Coconut ropes are quite popular and widely used. You can also make rope using green coconut leaves as they are long and can be drawn into the thin wire like strips. These ropes can help you build a strong shelter and joining and binding things together.
Hollow coconut shells can be used as a dish for eating and drinking. If you can manage to make a hole in the shell tip, you can also use it as a funnel. This funnel can help you to collect fresh drinking water. You know that on an Island getting fresh drinking water can be tricky. Don’t you?
5. Fuel and Tinder
The dry fiber of a coconut fruit is considered as one of the best Tinder matter for starting a fire. On the other hand, dry leaves and trunk of the tree have been used for centuries as fire fuel. Hence, You should start collecting the coconut leaves as soon as possible if you are stuck on a lonely Island.
6. Self Defence
Middle branch of the coconut leaf is very hard and if you can sharpen the front end of a leaf, It can serve as a primitive spear. You can hunt for small animals or you can keep intruders off your territory. Meanwhile, This spear can help you hunt for little animals that can fill your belly. If I were you in the situation I could practice to use this coconut leaf spear for spearfishing as Tom Hanks did in “Cast Away”.
7. Emergency Raft
If you are stuck on an island, you can’t stay there all your life. Also, you might not get help from rescuers if your luck is not favoring you. So, if getting out of the island on your own is the last solution, you can use coconut trunk to make an emergency raft. You want to go a little deeper to catch fishes or something like that, this raft will be your reliable companion.
These are some coconut tree uses as I presume. If you know any more uses of coconut tree and fruit, do tell me in the comment section. Your feedback always inspires me to write more. If you have reached this far, then You should check my other articles too. Happy Hiking | safe hiking | adventurous Hiking