The Banyan Tree

On our trip to Hawaii, I fell in love with the banyan trees.

(Yeah, go ahead and say it. I'm a tree hugger. Or a treehugger. Or maybe both. I'll admit it.)

I didn't think it got much better than the big, beautiful tree in the courtyard of our hotel in Waikiki.

And then we moseyed around in quaint little downtown Lahaina on Maui and came across this monster of a banyan. (Or "magical Avatar tree," as Conservative Hubby prefers to call it.)

Yes, this is one tree. (Sort of.)

After we gazed in wonder at this monstrosity, Conservative Hubby hopped on his magic phone he carries with him that has the answers to all the world's questions to find out what the deal was with the banyan.

That's how we learned it's a fig. Its seeds germinate in the cracks of a host tree and then send down roots toward the ground, which can end up taking over the host tree (hence the moniker it sometimes has, "stranger fig").

This particular banyan happens to be a rather greedy fellow that has taken over all the other trees around it in the park.

And it's pretty darn cool.

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