Every summer vacation we visited our grandparents near the coastal regions of Andhra Pradesh. We loved going to our native village. The train journey from Delhi was long and tiring, it took nearly 36 hours to reach Srikakulam or Vizag. As a kid looking out of the train window, I knew we were close to our hometown when I saw Taati Chettulu (Toddy Palm trees). The rice fields were lined up with these robust trees. These trees have a lifespan of over 100 years.
I am sure this will bring back fond memories that you could share.
The fruit Taati Munju also called Ice-Apple is tender, flat and round with a light brownish skin. This jelly like fruit has refreshing sugary liquid inside and is considered a delicacy in South India. The fruit is available in early summer and acts as a coolant. A recent study conducted on Toddy Palm trees states if grown on a larger scale commercial farms, it could help solve the world’s malnutrition problem.
- Contains Vitamin A, B-complex and C and provides a good balance of minerals and sugar
- The fruit is used to treat stomach and digestive problems.
- The pulp is used to treat Dermatitis or inflammatory conditions of the skin.
There are also some religious values attached to the Toddy Palm tree. Ancient Indian manuscripts were often made with palm leaves. Even today in the village people use these leaves for ceremonial occasions especially for pelli pandiri which is erected on bamboo or metal poles 3 days prior to the actual date of marriage. Without doubt one could say ‘The Toddy Palm tree’ is an invaluable asset to our country; India.