IO THE INHABITANTS OF THE PHILIPPINES
valleys and broad plains, rocky promontories and coral reefs, every feature is present, except the snow-clad peak and the glacier.
Vegetation here runs riot, hardly checked by the devastating typhoon, or the fall of volcanic ashes. From the cocoa-nut palm growing on the coral strand, from the mangrove, building its pyramid of roots upon the ooze, to the giant bamboo on the banks of the streams, and the noble mango tree adorning the plains, every tropical species flourishes in endless variety, and forests of conifers* clothe the summits of the Zambales and Ilocan mountains.
As for the forest wealth, the trees yielding indestructible timber for ships, houses or furniture, those giving valuable drugs and healing oils, gums and pigments, varnishes, pitch and resin, dyes, sap for fermenting or distilling, oil for burning, water, vinegar, milk, fibre, charcoal, pitch, fecula, edible fungi, tubers, bark and fruits, it would take a larger book than this to enumerate them in their incredible variety.
A notable feature of the Philippine landscape is the mango tree. This truly magnificent tree is often of perfect symmetry, and rears aloft on its massive trunk and wide-spreading branches a perfect dome of green and glistening leaves, adorned in season with countless strings of sweet-scented blossom and pendent clusters of green and golden fruit, incomparably luscious, unsurpassed, unequalled.
Beneath that shapely vault of verdure the featheied tribes find shelter. The restless mango bird f displays his contrasted plumage of black and yellow as he flits from bough to bough, the crimson-breasted pigeon and the ringdove rest secure.
These glorious trees are pleasing objects for the eye to rest on. All through the fertile valleys of Luzon they stand singly or in groups, and give a character to the landscape which would otherwise be lacking. Only the largest and
* Worcester, p. 446, mentions Conifers at sea level in Sibuyan Island, province of Romblon.
t Called in Spanish the oropndola (.Broderipus achrorchus).t Called in Spanish the oropA(c)ndola (.Broderipus achrorchus).