Saturday, July 6, 2013

Flushes in the park

Pometia pinnata - Kasai (Malay)

Dillenia suffructicosa - Simpoh air (Malay)
 In a broad sense we need colour in a park to make it a beautiful and memorable place  to visit.  In the evergreen tropical forest environment, flushes are a welcome change providing an autumn-like atmosphere that can actually be seen throughout the year.  I am fortunate to have a good collection of native plant species that produce varying colours of young leaves.  Among the significant ones are the Pawas, Simpoh air, Jering and Balem trees.  To make the flushes appear many times, I have introduced many other tree species like the Ceylon Ironwood , Eugenia oleina and  Kasai . 
Messua ferrea - Ceylon Ironwood
 The Ceylon Ironwood tree produces young leaves in pink flushes and they hang limply in tassels until they become harder and leathery.
a jungle plant species, native to the park..

Eugenia oleina - Syn: Syzygium campanulatum
The Eugenia oleina trees was the first batch of trees I introduced here as roadside trees along the park roads.  They have small narrow pointed leaves and produce young leaves in appealing pink colours. The oleina trees when in flower attract hordes of butterfly species, birds and bees.  At fruiting stage the fruits are savoured by the Philippine glossy starling birds and bulbuls .
Eugenia oleina

 The Pawas tree is native to the park.  To the best of my knowledge I noticed that after a season of arrival at the park, the Philippine Glossy starling birds would leave behind seeds of the Pawas in their droppings from which later sprang hundreds of seedlings of the Pawas tree in the forest undergrowth.  The young leaves of the Pawas can be eaten raw as salad or 'ulam' in Malay.
Pawas , belong to the Lauraceae or Laurel family.

Pithecolobium lobatum - Jering (Malay)

 The 'Jering' tree produces fruits that can be eaten in many ways, as salads or desserts.  Its young leaves are a maroon in colour and very attractive to see at a distance.

I guess I will try in future to add more tree species that have colourful flushes to make the park full of colours at any time of the year because some flushes envelope whole trees or canopies and appear very regularly throughout the year.

Pithecolobium lobatum - Jering (Malay)

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