Want to learn more about the plants in Malay? We can’t blame you! Plants are indisputably one of the most fundamental aspects of our existence on Earth. They supply us with the oxygen we breathe and provide us with food, shelter, and medicine. In Malaysia, plants are an integral part of the country’s culture and heritage, shaping the lives and traditions of its people for centuries. Let’s get to know more about this topic in today’s post!
Malaysia boasts a stunning array of plant life, making it one of the most biodiverse regions on the planet, with over 15,000 species of flora recorded. This incredible diversity is due to the tropical climate that allows for the growth of an extensive range of plants, including some of the tastiest vegetables and fruits found in the ancient rainforests of the peninsular. So plants can be a great option if you’re looking for a topic to converse with the locals! Let’s go over all that and more in the sections below!
Common Plants In Malaysia
One of the most famous plants in Malaysia is the Bunga Raya, or the hibiscus flower. It is the national flower of Malaysia and is well-known for its vibrant colors, all-year-round flowers, trumpet-shaped petals, and large size. The Bunga Raya plant is commonly found in gardens and parks throughout the country and is often used in traditional Malay medicine to treat ailments such as fever, high blood pressure, and coughs. It also makes a tasty tea.
Another common plant in Malaysia is the coconut tree. The coconut is an essential part of Malay cuisine and is used in many dishes, including curries, desserts, and drinks. Coconut trees and palms are also highly valued for their timber, used in construction, furniture making, and other traditional arts and crafts.
The durian fruit is another well-known plant in Malaysia and is planted across southeast Asia. The durian is a spiky, football-sized fruit with a pungent odor that many people find overpowering. In fact, the smell can be so overpowering that durian is often banned in places like public transport. Despite its strong, stinky smell, durian is highly valued for its sweet, custard-like flesh and is often used in traditional Malay desserts and snacks.
If it’s medicinal plants you are after, Malaysia has it covered, many of which have been used for centuries by indigenous groups such as the Orang Asli, the oldest tribe in Peninsular Malaysia, to treat various illnesses and ailments. One such plant is the Tongkat Ali, or Eurycoma longifolia, which is commonly used as a natural testosterone booster and is believed to have aphrodisiac properties. Another popular medicinal plant is the Kacip Fatimah, or Labisia pumila, which is used to treat menstrual cramps and help recovery following childbirth.
Stinking Corpse Lily
The rainforests of peninsular Malaysia are also home to a diverse range of plant species, many of which are unique to the region. One such plant is the Rafflesia, world-famous for its large, reddish-brown flowers that can grow up to one meter in diameter. The Rafflesia, or “Stinking Corpse Lily,” is also known as the world’s largest flower and is a rare sight, as it only blooms for a few days each year. As the name suggests, this fantastic flower doesn’t smell very nice to our noses but is nectar to flies and insects. If you want to see one, try a hiking trip on the slopes of the Sarawak and Sabah mountains.
The pitcher plant, Nepenthes, is another fascinating plant in Malaysia. The pitcher plant is carnivorous and is capable of trapping and digesting small insects and animals. This otherworldly-looking plant has a strange tubular structure in which it traps and digests its prey. Found in the rainforests of Borneo, it is an integral part of the ecosystem, helping to control insect populations.
The Role Of Plants In The Malay Economy
In addition to their cultural and medicinal importance, plants in Malaysia also play an essential role in the country’s economy. Malaysia is one of the world’s largest palm oil producers derived from the oil palm tree. Palm oil is used in various products, including food, cosmetics, and biofuels.
Rubber is another vital crop planted in Malaysia, with the country being one of the world’s largest producers of natural rubber. The rubber tree is native to South America but was introduced to Malaysia in the early 20th century and has since become a major source of income for the country.
In recent years, there has been growing concern over the destruction of Malaysia’s rainforests to make way for palm oil and rubber plantations. The loss of these forests threatens the survival of unique plant species and hurts the region, environment, and local communities.
Efforts are being made to address these issues, with some companies committing to using only sustainable palm oil and rubber already planted in the region. Conservation programs also aim to protect the rainforest and promote sustainable land use practices to ensure the native flora is around for the next generation.
Useful Plant-Related Vocab
Now we have looked at some of the most popular plants in Malaysia, let’s practice some plant-related words in Malay and English.
Learn Malay With Ling App
Learning languages like Malay is made easy with the Ling app. n fact, the Ling app has you covered for over 60 languages and is packed with fun ways to learn, such as games and quizzes, as well as hundreds of fascinating blogs like the one you have just finished. Download Ling and learn more Malay today at Google Play and App Store.