Daily Prompt: Thorny

This post has been brought to you by a passage from the book Yemen, By Daniel McLaughlin.

Some of the richest concentrations of flora in Yemen are found in the western mountainous region. Between 2,500m and 3,200m there lies a dwarf-shrub forest. The Abyssinian rose (Rosa abyssinica) is found in this region. These thorny bushes produce small, fragrant, pale yellow flowers. The small orange fruits of this bush are edible and enjoyed by children and baboons alike.

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Yemen is also a producer of both frankincense and myrrh. Frankincense is produced by Boswellia sacra, a tree grown in the Hadramawt region. The trees are small with smooth bark; the incense is produced from the trees’ resin. Myrrh is produced from Commiphora myrrah. The myrrh tree is small (no taller than 3m) with rough bark and thorny branches. These trees are grown in the western highlands of the country. Once again, the incense is produced from the resin of the tree.

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myrrh tree (Commiphora myrrha is a tree in the Burseraceae family) from Socotra island, Yemen wizh small bottel trees at background.

The thorny myrrh tree is an important and very recognizable object in history. Myrrh was one of the three gifts, along with gold and frankincense, brought by the Three Wise Men.

“Myrrh, the most precious herb of the East.”