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Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 73.djvu/204

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200
POPULAR SCIENCE MONTHLY

PSM V73 D204 Brownea and a talipot palm on the right ceylon.png

Fig. 4. Brownea, a Tree with Young Leaves hanging limp at the Ends of the Branches. At the right a Talipot palm in blossom. From a photograph by the author.

which the jungle comes to the very door of civilization. In our own country we do not find "backwoods" close to cities and towns, but must travel a long way from Boston or New York to find the primeval forest. Ceylon, however, like other tropical countries, furnishes examples of jungle in close proximity to the large towns. Indeed, everywhere throughout the island the forest is easily reached. There is no half-way land in Ceylon. That which is needed for roads, gardens or fields is well cared for; other land grows up quickly to jungle. Old fields, abandoned a few years, soon become a dense thicket and later a forest. This is well seen at Anuradhapura, one of the ruined cities in the north central part of the island. Here, the government archeologists, as they find various parts of buildings such as columns and arches, set them up in place; but sometimes they neglect to