Other members of this plant Family include the Avocado and the Bay Leaf Tree. Cinnamon is made from grinding up dried bark strips taken from mature, green stems that are cut from the tree. One can also buy “stick cinnamon” in a box; you can see how these “sticks” are just dried bark rolls removed from the stems. Cinnamon oil is distilled from bark stripped from 2 -3 year-old stems.
Cinnamon was part of the valuable spice trade that ran from east Africa into Europe in biblical times.
The tree produces distinctive, shiny, 6-inch long, medium-green leaves that appear to droop downwards. The new shoot growth appears wilted as the leaves enlarge and usually has a reddish tint that fades as it matures. The leaves each contain three prominent veins (nerves) running from the leaf base to its tip. Trees require protection from windy conditions, as the leaves will become dry and die at their tips and margins if planted in exposed sites. The tree can attain a trunk diameter in excess of 6 feet and a height in excess of 50 feet.
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