The cork tree is typical of the western Mediterranean region. It is known as Quercus suber L., and belongs to a sub-group of European and Asian oak species (Cerris). One of its most distinctive properties is the outer homogeneous layer that grows around its trunk, called cork. The continual phellogen regeneration causes the homogeneity of this layer during its lifespan. Contrary to other species, with limited phellogen production capacity, the cork oak tree keeps regenerating over and over again.
As stated before, the words “waste” and “cork tree” don’t go together. Cork trees might be one of the most versatile trees ever to grace the world.
The acorn, its fruit, serves as food for other animals, to further seed new trees, and to produce culinary oil. Moreover the leaves can be used as natural fertilizers and fodder for the animals.
The tree’s pruning results in vegetal coal and wood, useful for many immediate communities and post-processed products. The cork tree oils also find an interesting application through its chemical properties, such as directly natural beauty products.