Thursday, June 2, 2016

A natural herbal sweetener called "Lemba'

Juicy white pulp of the ripe fruit  with black seeds.  The fruits are in a bunch.

"Lemba" at left of pix
 After having cleared the top-hill, mid-hill and valley footpath of dead leaves yesterday, I took some time today checking out some of the plants at the Botanic Island One.  One herbal plant caught my attention.  It was the 'Lemba" or Curculigo latifolia.  Apparently they have grown well after I have transplanted some of them about a year ago at the location just nearby  the 'Belian " log.  I have previously planted it for posterity and as a landscape plant.  Its luxurious growth have encouraged me to plant more of them at the Botanic Islands here.  The ripe fruit of this herbal plant has juicy white pulp that is sweet.  It is a well-known trick among the peoples of Sarawak that before eating sour things eating these fruits will turn sour taste sweet.  For some eating the fruits before drinking plain water will make the water tastes like sugar water.  It has tiny bright yellow six-petaled flowers.
Note the 'Belian" log at the middle of the picture( Mid-hill footpath) and the "Lemba" growing on the slope in groups just slightly above it .  This is the micro-climate most suitable for its growth i.e. sheltered light and in cool forest setting.
Location : Botanic Island One

Fruit bunch opened showing the elongated oval fruits. Fruits and seeds are edible and can be taken fresh.

Yellow flower of the 'Lemba' and fruit bunches

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