Banyans, Banyans, Everywhere Banyans!

My love affair with (or of) banyan trees started back in 2009 when I made the trip out to visit the Angel Oak banyan tree in St. John, South Carolina (a 30-40 minute drive outside of Charleston). It was amazing to see a tree that spread out for meters.
2713_189191635392_4516876_n 2713_189191615392_2658576_n (These were taking during my “convert all pictures to sepia” phase back then.)

Now, when I headed over to Hawaii this past winter break, I had no idea that I would be treated to banyan tree after banyan tree on Oahu and Maui! 🙂 AND that there are varieties of banyan trees, e.g., Indian and Chinese banyan trees, whose roots grow in different ways. Here’s a sampling of banyan trees that I saw.

On the Pearl Harbor base, there is a banyan tree that has seen a lot of love. This is one of a few that I saw just on base.
IMG_0013IMG_0021IMG_0030 IMG_0031 IMG_0033On Maui, there are also loads of banyan trees. There’s a famous one in Lahaina that I didn’t take a picture due to an incident involving a strong-ish wave that hit me in the legs while I was waiting to take a picture and resulting in me falling face down into the water… and my DSLR. 😦 RIP first DSLR camera – you served me well. But I digress.

Here’s a banyan tree providing shadow to one of four Ululani’s Shaved Ice places (and one of many trips to eat shaved ice). As a side note, after taste testing at least six different shaved ice vendors on Maui and Oahu, Ululani’s is the best.
IMG_2589 IMG_2587 The road to Hana is peppered with them. Here’s one of many banyan trees in Haleakala National Park.
IMG_2624 IMG_2626Not as many initials on this one since it’s in a nature preserve. But still, the human proclivity to want to leave a mark is insatiable.

The last banyan tree (pre-death of my camera) shown here was at the grave site area of Charles Lindbergh, aviator.
This one was also amazing. The shape was different from the other banyans I saw during that week and you could clearly see how invasive the roots are because you could see the roots basically growing out and taking over trees in the surrounding areas.
IMG_2658 IMG_2679
There’s something about the tenacity and the massiveness of these trees that makes me at once awestruck and intrigued. Next up, the black sand beaches of Maui.


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