from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. A large, spreading tree of the Euphorbiaceae, found on wooded hills and among sand dunes, with distinctive hand-shaped leaves, whose pale yellow wood resembles balsa.
- n. Its egg-shaped, velvety fruit, having a thin layer of edible flesh surrounding a highly nutritious nut.
Sorry, no etymologies found.
Kung San of the Kalahari Desert is the mongongo fruit, which has a fleshy exterior and an edible kernel.
The mongongo nut (Ricinodendron rauteanenii) from the Kalahari and the ye-eb (Codeauxin edulis) from Somalia are staples of local diet in very arid regions and the practicality of these species being planted as desert orchards in their countries of origin and elsewhere is being investigated.
Why should we take up farming when there are so many mongongo nuts in the world?
Some cultural details we have heard before from Richard Lee or Irven DeVore [*] — the elaborate gift-exchanges, the bounteous mongongo nut, the meat-sharing, the canny skills (the ability to recognize an individual's tracks, for example), the storied botanical and animal lore.
Kung bushman was asked in the 1960s why his people hadn’t taken up agriculture, he replied: “Why should we plant when there are so many mongongo nuts in the world?”
Perhaps the famed statement by an African Dobe Bushman says it all: "Why should we plant when there are so many mongongo nuts in the world?" (