What is Tagua or vegetal ivory ?
The vegetal ivory is also known as tagua or corozo, is the albumen
of the ivory palm tree(species of the Phytelephas) that grows in the dense shady forests, on hillsides, between 300 and 1 200 meters of altitude.
We find them in the heart of the amazonian forest of Equator, Colombia,
Peru and some other countries in the world where it was implated.
These particular palm trees can go up to 6 meter high; they begin to produce
the fruit after 15 years. It is the albumen that, when hardened, shapes
into the vegetal ivory. The seeds, wrapped into a big grape in a pineapple
shape falls down the palm tree in a natural way.
The seed is then dried, it becomes very tough and it is at that moment
that the seed is worked on. Pollished, colored, drilled, sculpted
or left in her natural state, the tagua allows mutiple use.
From decades it is used by the indians to make buttons and also cutting ustensils.
It gives the jewellers the same characteristics as the animal ivory :
texture, strenght, smooth feeling but respects the nature.
Besides, the latin noun is Phytelephas that signifies vegetal elephant it finds
it’s origin in these characteristics.