Apr 12, 2008

Low-hanging flowers of Chek Jawa

Today, heading back after the TeamSeagrass monitoring, we saw lots of mangrove and coastal flowers hanging really low! This is a rare opportunity to get good photos of them. Usually, these flowers are high up and hard to shoot. Also, it was early in the morning, so the flowers were reasonably fresh!

Our mangrove trees have quite amazing flowers if you take a closer look at them.

Bruguiera cylindrica has tiny white flowers with tassels on the tips of their petals!The much larger Bruguiera gymnorrhiza has bright red plasticy bracts, with brown petals that have tassels on their tips too!A familiar mangrove tree with stilt roots, Rhizophora apiculata has large stumpy looking flowers that are attached firmly to the stem. The petals are odd-looking.On the shores, were these pretty asymmetrical flowers of Scaveola taccada. A big bumble bee was visiting these flowers.On a low hanging branch of the Sea almond (Terminalia catappa) were pretty little star-shaped flowers. And bunch of ants, not sure what the ants were huddled around.
Chek Jawa has among the last of our natural coastal forests. Today, some of the plants there obligingly had low hanging flowers.

Among the more famous trees there is the Seashore nutmeg (Knema globularia) with a bright red fruit that is eaten by hornbills. The flowers are small and brownish.Another special plant is the Pong-pong tree (Cerbera odollam). The Pong-pong trees commonly seen on our roadsides are from Malaysia. Our native Pong-pong trees have flowers with a pink centre and are now only found in natural coastal forests such as Chek Jawa. And here are a few other plants flowering in Chek Jawa's coastal forest who's names I don't know.

One with elegant tube shaped flowers.
Another with tiny flowers in a bunch.Another with tiny white brush-like flowers.And one with delicate white flowers in large bunches.On the way back to House No. 1, the paths were strewn with the fallen flowers of the Durian tree!Durian trees have flowers pollinated by bats. These nectar-feeding bats rely on the more regularly flowering mangrove trees for a steady supply of food. Thus the durians we love to eat, depend on flourishing mangroves and happy bats!

1 comment:

Ain said...

Thanks for the info..