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Saturday, March 1, 2008

The Rain Trees of Taiping

The numerous rain trees (samanea saman) found all over parts of Taiping town are apparently not native to the country and orginates from South America.

I have known them since childhood and had always thought they were native with so many that has been around much longer than me.

It is easily recoqnized by its characteristic umbrella-shaped canopy providing excellent shades from the burning mid-day tropical sun, making it a popular tree to be planted along roads and parks.

Why are they called Rain Tree?

According to a report on Species Profiles for Pacific Island Agroforestry specifically on Rain Tree by Staples & Elevitch.

It has been attributed to:

• The leaflets are light-sensitive and close together on cloudy days (as well as from dusk to dawn), allowing rain to fall through the canopy to the ground below.

• The grass is often much greener under a rain tree than the surrounding grass.

• A steady drizzle of honeydew is often created by sap-sucking insects.

• Nectaries on the leaf petioles excrete sugary juice that sometimes falls from the tree like rain.

• During heavy flowering, stamens can drop from the canopy like rain.


R.Kumaran said...

Dear Tung, I love the beautiful Taiping. Is there any micro light flying in taiping using the old runway?

Tung Kin Foong said...

Hello Kumaran,
Yes, Taiping is indeed beautiful, all one need to do is open our eyes and take a moment to observe rather than just see. About the micro light, I no longer see that activity in the old runway.
You sound like you are from Taiping or was once from here.
P.S. Your email address doesn't seem to work. It has bounced back a mail I send to you.