The coconut pearl.
When we buy coconuts (Cocos nucifera), we usually lift it to our ears and give it a shake to check that it contains some tasty coconut water (this is different to coconut milk, which is a derivative of copra, produced in such a way as to make it drinkable).
Each coconut has three so-called eyes, which are slightly softer areas of the shell, through which the germinating coconut sends out its first leaves and roots. A surprise awaits us about one time in a million -, as this is how rare we find a coconut without these three eyes. It is then worthwhile to take interest in the fruit, as it may contain a botanical jewel - a coconut pearl. A coconut pearl is a spherical, resembling a real pearl with an amazing shine. Sometimes it is slightly
colored, for example with a green tinge - and such a pearl can be purchased by anyone for about $300 (as is shown in the attached illustration). In the treasures of an Indian Maharaja, there is a certain number of
magnificent coconut pearls, which are considered jewels of the highest class, and are often set in gold and silver.
Opinions about the origin of, and the chemical composition of coconut pearls are divided. Some even say, that all of the known occurrences of coconut pearls are fakes. Goerg Eberhard Rumphius, known as Plinius of India, who was the first to write about the coconut pearl in the XVII century, conducted a basic analysis and came to the conclusion that it was a calcium deposit of sorts. Others believe that it is like an opal in nature (a silicon compound), finally the Institute of Gemology in
Basel, Switzerland, stated that all of the coconut pearls that had been given for analysis, had indeed been fakes.
Regardless of whether real coconut pearls do exist or not, they have certain powers as talismans. According to experts in energy flows, the coconut pearl expels negative energy (whatever this means), it brings luck, it increases business dealings and guarantees social success through stimulating personal magnetism of the person who possesses the pearl. According to the Indian Maharaja, coconut pearls are so valuable that they are priceless. One such pearl is on display at the Coral Gables Botanical Gardens, and can be
viewed on the