Sunday, April 20, 2008

Ali 's walking stick

At a coastal hill forest in Peninsula Malaysia, we walked into an area populated by many Tongkat Alis of varying ages. Eurycome longifolia or Tongkat Ali as it is known locally - is a miracle plant in this part of the world. It has been used traditionally as a tonic, a malaria drug and most famously an aphrodisiac from Indonesia, Malaysia all the way to Vietnam, where it was called “Cay Ba Binh”, the tree that cure a hundred disease. So you can imagine our surprise seeing so much of them outside a protected park.

Standing proud and errect, this old specimen promises to ease the anxieties of many Asian men....if only its more accessible !

As the local pointed out to me, even Tongkat Ali's fresh leaves stay turgid and uncreased after you tried to fold it.

Despite its thin trunk, this small tree has a very deep tap root from which all the miraculous chemicals concentrate. I once tried to pull a small plant less than 2 metres tall and a girth of 6-8 cm thereabout and it would not move at all. My guide said if I could pull it out with bare hands, I would be the "He-Man" in his village !


Marie said...

Great post :)

Hermes said...

Sounds wonderful. When I looked it up on the web (your post is already googled by the way) it came up with the sort of adverts I get as spam and make me feel inadequate!

Trudi said...

Thank you for your messages. I do like your posts. Very interesting and unusal. Critters and plants which are not on show every day. Is this your job or interest and hobby or both? Well anyway it's great.
The Echidnas move in and out. I am not sure how long they stay in one place. Iguess they are always looking for food.
Those colourful Epiphillums flower here by day.

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