The best part about nature is that every little thing can be utilized in an efficient and conservative manner. Same goes with, yes, leaves! Leaves already do a pious act of providing for the plant and producing oxygen for the creatures on the earth to breathe but they can be utilized in umpteen other ways to help the mankind prosper. Read on to know more.
Perhaps the most widely known leaf for its use and the most underrated one too. Banana leaves are used to serve food in different parts of India and add a traditional touch and feel to it. A lesser known fact is it can be used for packaging foods too. Foods that don’t spoil easily can be packed in banana leaves and consumed later in the day.
- To try this, take a banana leaf and hold the leaf over a flame at a safe distance for half a minute until it heats up and turns color into a noticeably darker shade.
- Flip the leaf and repeat.
- Now place the food you want inside the leaf with a safe amount of distance kept from all sides of the leaf so that it doesn’t spill out and fold the leaf inwards into a rectangular shape, leaving no gap for the food to move around.
- Secure the leaf in the same fashion in a thin paper. Enjoy your meal in an eco-friendly lunchbox.
Used in the same way as banana leaf but going the distance and being widely known for being much more durable and sustaining for holding fluids and lump sum amount of food, areca leaves are a notch higher on the list compared to banana leaves. Leaf Basket products that provide these traits are made similarly but from areca leaves that undergo special treatment thus provide higher durability while not compromising on the looks.
Making its way into the creative part of the world with its eco-friendly tag and a wide variety of colors is Eco-dyeing. Eco-dyeing consists of leaves like eucalyptus that give off colors that can be used in both dyeings and as paints for the environment-friendly and artistic human you are. Next time you place the canvas in position, look for eco-friendly paints or maybe just hit the nearest art exhibition and find a fellow artist who loves nature just as much as you.
Visiting rural areas might give you an idea of how leaves are substituted for roofs for houses. Nypa leaves which are in the same category as palm trees are mainly used, but look quite different. Nypa leaves are long and thin and these are stacked together after tied up and placed on top of houses as roofs. Nypa leaves don’t dry out easily and leave generally, keep out the heat, thus resulting in an eco-friendly and beautiful looking house. They usually are replaced once in 6-12 months depending on the nature of the leaves. Now being used in fancy outhouses and treehouses, they were the only kind of roofing for the not-so-rich families back in the days.