Yearly Archives: 2009

Bunga Kertas – Bougainvillea glabra

I’ve had these 3 pots of bougainvillea for the past 6 years. When we moved to this new house, I thought of leaving them, but SIL advised me to pruned all the sharp thorny stems and transported them together with other plants.

So after a few months of adapting to new surrounding and location, they are finally blooming with great flowers.

Info taken from

“Bougainvillea was named after the world traveler, Louis de Bougainville, who discovered it in Brazil in 1790 and brought it to Europe where it became both widespread and popular.

It is the bracts that make the plant so eye-catching. The actual flowers are located in the center, and are usually creamy yellow.”


General aspect and origins – Bougainvillea glabra is also known as bougainvillea or paper flower. This vine is native to Brazil. Its woody stems can reach up to 15 to 30 ft (5 to 10 m) long, if not pruned back. Bougainvillea flowering is very showy, and can be of various colors, depending on the different cultivars.

Leaves – Bougainvillea glabra has an evergreen foliage, which can be semi-decidious in colder places. Leaves can be of different shapes, depending on the different varieties, and can be up to 4 in (10 cm) long.

Flowers – Flowers are insignificant, tubular and white-cream. They are surrounded by colorful bracts, which can be orange, pink, purple, red, yellow, white depending on the varieties.

I never know that the actual flower are actually the tiny tubular white inside the colorful bracts. The colorful papery bracts are the reason why people name it as paper flower. This Bougainvillea glabra also known as lesser bougainvillea, is the most common species used for bonsai. (I’ve been meaning to try my hand with bonsai, but Hubby is against the idea..huhu!)

I love this one with its striking contrasting green and white variegated foliage. As of the time I’m updating this entry, it is flowering but I am too occupied to snap some new pictures.

My next mission is to find a pot of Bougainvillea with rich bright red bracts. Will update more if I could find one in the nursery nearby..heh!

Asplenium australasicum – Bird’s Nest Fern

It took me some times to identify the name of this plant. I only know it as Bird’s Nest Fern. But when I did some research, there are actually many species. I hope I get it correctly after reading the description on the page of Australian Native Plants Society (Australia) – ANPSA – Asplenium australasicum.

At first I thought it is Asplenium nidus or Asplenium phyllitidis after reading the page of Tropical Fern and Exotic Plants Society on Bird’s Nest Fern.

It is said in most website that this Asplenium australasicum may be confused with Asplenium nidus. Taken from wikipedia,

“Apparently, most plants sold in America as A. nidus are actually Asplenium australasicum. A. australasicum has longer sori, and the midrib has a different shape.”

Quoting from page,

“A. australasicum is nearly always epiphytic, growing on the limbs and trunk of trees but it will occasionally be found on rocks or even in the ground when a mature plant has fallen. There is a variety that has lobed fronds and is known as A. australasicum ‘ Multilobum’.

As epiphytes, all of these bird’s-nest ferns should be potted in a very coarse mix with great drainage. They should be under-potted to prevent accumulation of too much moisture although double-potting with the outer pot filled with gravel or the like may be necessary to provide a heavy enough base to support the large fronds. They should be lightly fed at frequent intervals during the growing season.”

Oh, Malays call this plant pokok langsuyar which somehow gives a spooky and horror connotation to the ghost of lady with long hair..huhu! One thing I noticed since I grow this plant, it could not stand direct heat and drying sun as the leaves will get tattered, turn brown and withered very fast.

I am yet to try spore propagation. Will share later if and when my Bird’s Nest Fern has spore to propagate..heh!

Floria Putrajaya 2009

I went to Putrajaya every time they have Floria or flora fest. Last year it was held in Johor Bahru, the year before it was grand with the parade and all. I think this year the lack of budget make it a less grand affair. Floria Putrajaya 2009 will be held from 1st August till 9 August at the Waterfront, Presint 2.

Nevertheless these are among the pictures I managed to take in such a hot weather..huhu! I assume that the tall flower arch symbolised keris..haha!

See those 2 budding DSLR photographers. You could find many more pro photog wannabe in the flower tent..heh! I have to be happy with my point and shoot camera, thus the quality of my floral pictures.

Among my favorite, the purple tapir and her offspring. I really want to see how do they do it, I mean the work of art that these floral contractors do, do they use wet floral foams to keep the flowers fresh all throughout these 8 days?

Check out closely the body of this rhino. It was built using kuaci and all sort of seeds and herbs. Creative, huh?

The seed rhino is accompanied by a few peacocks. I think the theme is Taman Syurgawi – the garden of Eden.

This reminds me of the folklore of sang kancil and buaya. But then here is a tiger embellished with flowers..haha!

I leave you readers with this bed of roses. Oh, they have many more colorful bed of roses in the exhibition tent. Go see the real flowers for yourselves!

Anthurium Acropolis – Flamingo flower, Tail flower

Anthurium, from anthos, meaning flower, and oura, meaning tail, refers to the many tiny true flowers that form in the yellow tail-like spadix. (Taken from

For many years I grew a pot of anthurium in my garden, but lately the one and only pot of anthurium seems to be dying. So since I went to IKEA a few weeks ago, I decided to buy another pot. As per above picture, it states that the botanical name is Anthurium Acropolis. However once home, I googled and found out that the cultivar acropolis usually has flower in white. The one bought in IKEA is red (??)

Nevertheless I hope this anthurium will last long. I found Anthurium Plant Care Instructions online and I hope I would be able to follow the guide.

Note to myself, don’t overwater the plant! hehe..

Make Your Own Water Fountain

SIL bought this ready-to-assemble water fountain a few months back during her shopping spree at Nilai 3. It took her a few days to chase after the gardening shop to send the items to her house, and once assembled this is how it looks.

Anyway the only thing that she got after paying RM1k++ is the fountain. All the plants she bought separately at the nearby nursery. She even bought some goldfish to put inside the small water container (and she has to clean the water every week ever since..sigh!).

Now that I have moved to my own house, I feel like making my own simple water fountain. From what I read in the gardening magazines and on the Internet, the basic tools needed for any kind of water fountain would be pots, stones, tubing and a pump.

Of course if I want something like what SIL bought, I have to buy a separate unit of resin containers. From what I read, it says that resin is a highly durable material and easier to work with than stone, concrete or other traditional fountain materials.

I will do more local research to find which shop sells such items with good bargain, and hopefully next time, I will be able to do extensive entry on how to DIY my garden water fountain soon..heh!

Cabbage Rose – Rosa centifolia

I think what I have in my garden is Centifolia rose, also known as roses with a hundred petals or cabbage rose. Well, at least until I get myself confused with Bourbon rose..huhu! So if there is any rose expert out there, please clarify my confusion.

Taken from the website : Heirloom Roses:

Centifolias are a complex breed of roses that have a sub class called the “Moss Roses”. All are hardy and exude a strong perfume. Bushes range form small to very large depending on the variety. They can be prone to blackspot in areas that have rainy summers. Most are once blooming with a few varieties that are remondant – (meaning they will flower more than once a season).

What I am sure of is that the rose I have belongs to the group of Old Garden Roses. The American Rose Society grouped all the rose types created prior to 1867 in the Old Garden Roses category.

I am not sure what variety or cultivar, my “ros kampung” belongs to. I have tried reading through most of the varieties descriptions but couldn’t find the exact match. However for those looking for fragrant blooms, this is definitely the winner.

I bought this in a home nursery during my balik kampung trip many months ago. I finally managed to get myself a pot of ros kampung..if you remember my previous entry on roses – Rose, Roses Are Red.

Hopefully this one will last long. I have pruned the plant after the first season of blooming is over and now I am waiting for the next bloom.

Jarum Tujuh – Pereskia sacharosa/saecnarosa

When I was given this plant (or rather the cutting of it) by MIL, she told me that it is called Jarum Tujuh and has the medicinal benefit to cure cancer. Since I collected herbal plants, I decided to try and plant it.

It does has sharp thorns along its thin stems, thus the name of Jarum Tujuh. It is said that there are 7 thorns or spines along one stem (which I can’t vouch for since I never check and count it..heh). Some people eat the crunchy leaves or make tea out of it to cure colon, nose and other type of cancer. It is also known as Bintang Tujuh, Cancer Plant and Chat Sim Chan.

Further reading, I found out that Pereskia is a genus of about 25 tropical species and varieties of cacti that do not look much like other types of cacti. Pereskia is the only cactus genus that has persistent non-succulent leaves. It is believed that this is the origin of other cacti.

It propagates through cuttings and seeds. Since the leaves are non-succulent, they drop easily if they don’t get enough water or if it is too hot or dry but can grow back quickly once they get sufficient watering.

UPDATED 25th June 2010: The correct name for this plant is Pereskia bleo.

Taken from a Pharmacognosy journal online:

Pereskia bleo and Pereskia grandifolia, commonly known as ‘Jarum Tujuh Bilah’ in Malaysia belong to the botanical family Cactaceae. Pereskia bleo can be easily confused with Pereskia grandifolia because they are vegetatively similar. However, they can be easily distinguished by the leaves, flowers, and spines. Pereskia bleo has thinner, corrugated leaves, and orangish-red flowers, with shorter spines compared to Pereskia grandifolia. In contrast, Pereskia grandifolia has thicker, uncorrugated leaves, and pink to purplish-pink flowers, with longer and lesser spines.

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