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Remember the Rainforest 1

 

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has the extension of more than one square league, but it was entirely abandoned. By the side of the road there was a spacious ranch to welcome the frequent troops back to Minas, a mill for maize, and a small house built for the owner, according to local custom. These small rural houses consist of some unadorned pieces, set on the cold floor, with barred windows or shutters; the roof usually runs on one side, a few feet above the walls, and forms the veranda supported by pillars and a low wall. Most of the time these huts are built with laths tied by cypos bindings, and are troweled with clay and whitewashed. Clayey soil lends itself everywhere to make good tiles, or when they are very expensive, the broad leaves of several palm trees provide, in fact light and waterproof cover. The generous nature here offers all the necessary material in profusion, and only lime is brought from Cabo Frio.

The Mandioca Farm is so named because of the excellent cassava that it cultivates. To the northwest, it is bordered by a mountain range cut by several caverns and covered by vegetation, which spreads from the valley to the highest peaks of the Serra dos Orgaos. In the middle of the virgin bush, after the burning of the trees, are the farms, planted by the farmer with cassava, corn, beans, coffee, etc. These farms, generally abandoned after some harvest, soon cover themselves after a few years with closed capoeira, which is distinguished by the absence of the larger and slow growing trees. The dense forests, which exist as a testament to the creative force of the New Continent in its primeval jungle, not yet desecrated by the ax, is called in Brazil "virgin bush". Inside the primeval jungle, the traveler feels the freshness of the European air, and soon sees a vision of maximum opulence; Evergreen vegetation grows in leafy trees and, unsatisfied with having produced these millennial giants, nature adorns each trunk with a new creation, with the green and flowering parasites. Each of these forest princes, which are almost together, stands out among the general set of their neighbors. While paineiras (1), partially armed with strong thorns, extend their branches far in considerable height to ventilate their digitized leaves, the already smaller sapuraias (2) group together compactly and form extremely dense arbor with its leafy branches. The jacaranda attracts the view by the projection of its fringed leaves in double rows; the great golden flowers of this and ipe (3) shine brightly in the midst of

(1) Bombax pentandrum, Ceiba L.
(2) Lecythis olaria, L. parviflora, L .; Idatimon Aubl., Anda brasiliensis Raddi.
(3) Jacaranda brasiliensis Juss: Bignonia Jacq.

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