On Thu, 29 Apr 1999, Joao Clark Medeiros wrote:

> Now I'm not saying that it isn't possible that some deforestation went on.
> Endier, as I recall, was carved out of the spiderfell. Incidentally, but on a
> different tangent, could endier still cultivate groves of (highly profitable)
> spiderfell wood, or is that wood somehow given its value due to some influence
> from the Spider himself?

Well, as a biologist, my initial response would be to say that it ought to
be an inherent property of the wood itself. However, even if that is true,
there are plenty of reasons why the trees might not grow outside of the
Spiderfell. For one, the forest has a unique climate: usually quite
gloomy, and always covered by at least low-grade clouds and/or fog.
Further, there could be some form of symbiote in the Spiderfell that these
valuable trees need in order to survive. In the real world this would
likely be some form of mycorrhizal fungus, but in the Spiderfell it might
well be some form of microscopic spider that lives in the old heartwood of
the trees and provides some necessary nutrient or vitamin. Heck, perhaps
they spin silken webs in the tree's wood, further strengthening it, and
this is part of the reason that the wood is so valuable.

Mark VanderMeulen