The more extreme climates of arid regions on the margins of the tropics, by the unpredictable succession of droughts and floods, confound the prevision of uninstructed people, and make prudence and industry qualities too uncertain in their results to be worth cultivating.
The inland region, called the sertao, is high, stony, and dry, and frequently devastated by prolonged droughts (seccas).
To the Volga, is less favoured by nature; the winters are longer and more inclement, and droughts are not uncommon.
In consequence of droughts, ravages of locusts and misgovernment by local governors the province has been much impoverished and hundreds of villages are in ruins and deserted.
In the more southern parts of the island it often reaches a height of 90 ft., and specimens exist considerably above that size; but the young shoots are apt to be injured in severe winters, and the tree on light soils is also hurt by long droughts, so that it usually presents a ragged appearance; though, in the distance, the lofty top and horizontal boughs sometimes stand out in most picturesque relief above the rounded summits of the neighbouring trees.
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