Plant Life on Athas: the Agafari Tree

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What Earth tree does the Agafari most resemble?

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I’m not a botanist, and a few minutes of research showed that looking for a specific tree type is like looking for a needle in a haystack.

Now I always associated Gulg with sub-Saharan Africa and take inspiration for the Congo when interpreting the crescent forest. Asa result I would base the agafari trees off large jungle trees of the Congo. Preferably ones known to have large quantities of vines grow on them due to their bloodvine problem.

That being said we can examine a few characteristics of agafari trees to get a better idea of what they are like. So we know agafari trees are blue (I always associated this with the bark color) and have limbs that spread wide enough to provide plenty of shade. These trees also get quite big, large enough for treetop buildings to be nestled among their branches. They have edible nuts and leaves sturdy enough for weaving together. These trees also have wide trunks that can be hollowed out without killing the tree, making agafari trees likely the hardiest plant on Athas.

Lastly, agafari trees are known to have a very hostile red vine grow on them known as blood vines, these can grow so dense on the tree that the plant appears entirely red. Bloodvines also will latch onto living animals that touch them and attempt to infest them as well, making them exceedingly dangerous.

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Would you say a bit like a baobab then? Or perhaps a giant redwood?

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I would see them more like baobab trees with wide spread out limbs like this rather than this. Redwoods are possible, but I have a hard time envisioning buildings being made on top of their limbs.

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like this maybe?baobab

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speaking of hollowing them out:

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for some reason I always imagined agafari trees being like the acacia trees so prevalent on the savannah. Though I must admit I really like the idea of the odd looking baobab in the Athasian landscape adding another element of weirdness and of Gulgians building penthouse homes in trees like this:s-l400

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I envision them being very leafy, with a wide trunk and spread out limbs, something like this with blue bark and numberous enough to form the dominant tree of a jungle. (Edit: An amusing thought occurred to me, making Lalali-Pui blue with green hair to match the trees she looks after, like some sort of grimdark dryad)

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An oddly coloured and larger boab tree was kind of what I pictured them as looking like as well.

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Super Sayan Lalai Puy! I like it. I also can see it as a leafy blue Baobab tree but harder wood, with a really tight smooth grain when processed and oiled, much like mahogany.

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For some reason, the description of Lalali-Puy as a ‘grimdark dryad’ had me rolling. Though I wonder if anyone can provide a page reference for the blue bark? I’m not doubting, as the flora of Dark Sun was never something I payed much attention too, but I’ve never thought of the trees as being blue (They certainly were never depicted that way in the art of Gulg).

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I lack a reference for the bark specifically, I’ve just seen them called blue on multiple occasions. So either the leaves are blue or the bark is blue. I assumed the bark was blue so that when something is made from agafari wood you can readily identify it from its color alone. That and the idea of a blue tree with green leaves evokes a more alien and bizzare image to me, especially when imagining being in a jungle surrounded by massive trees looking like that. Factor in the red blood vines the trees sometimes get and it gets even eerier.

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Sorry, I wasn’t asking about the bark so much as where have they been called blue.

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I’m not sure all the places it’s been called out, but The Broken Blade by Simon Hawke in the prologue it talks about the agafari true having blue needles.

Plant life of Athas:
http://www.athas.org/articles/plant-life-of-athas
Agafari Tree - A tree of the Crescent Forest, agafari wood is extremely hard and is the next best thing to metal. The wood is used to make weapons and shields and is a major trade good of Nibenay. The tree’s bark has a bluish tint. At the top of the tree, which can be over 100 feet tall, the boughs spread out in great, sweeping fans. The enormous heart-shaped leaves are the color of turquoise. These large trees can actually be hollowed out without killing the tree.

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