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CTA. 2003. Mailbox. Spore 104. CTA, Wageningen, The Netherlands.
Permanent link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/10568/47928
Internet URL: http://spore.cta.int/images/stories/pdf/old/spore104.pdf
We got mail, you got mail! - this time from and about readers in four ACP regions - including one from our growing number of correspondents in Haïti. Welcome all, especially to an 'outsider' from east Asia. Does it matter where you're from when we know w
"My postcard pictures a dead tree," writes Jeannis Fritzner (rue Sylvio Gator/imp. Exumé 15, Delmas, Haïti), "but I sent it anyway, since it would please you more than a picture of a painted concrete cathedral." "CTA equals the soil, the soil equals trees and trees equal life. I do not know why this tree is dead. If you could shed any light on the cause of its death, please tell me. It is a Azadirachta indica or neem tree." It is difficult to tell from just a picture of the trunk what caused the death of the tree, Jeannis. In general, neem trees are real survivors - though they all die sometime. One thing they cannot stand is wet feet - a high groundwater table will affect them. Despite their insect-repelling characteristics, neem trees are prone to a few scale insects. The yellow scale insect (Aonidiella orientalis) has been a serious problem during high infestations in West and Central Africa, giving affected trees a burnt appearance. A more serious problem in Africa is 'decline', best defined as a combination of factors in a particular order which gradually cause the tree to deteriorate. General factors such as soil type, site or a genetic disorder, combined with insects, drought or pollutants, might cause a general decline in a certain tree population in a certain region.