Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Green Thumb Workshop @ Alokarama (25-26 Apr 2009)

The herbs garden at Alokarama.

I am back from the Green Thumb Workshop in Alokarama retreat centre in Asahan, Melaka.

Unfortunately, the soil specialist who were supposed to speak on soil improvement didn't make it to the workshop. However, we still had a good time working in the herbs garden (as seen in the above photo) ~ weeding, pruning and harvesting.

We also learnt the various benefits of the variety of herbs planted there. There are so many herbs and it would take me a very long time to learn them. We also used the harvested herb i.e. misai kucing, lemon grass and pandan leaves to boil tea with them. In preparation of our meals, we also used various herbs to prepare our meals, e.g. sawtooth coriander for nasi ulam, cili padi and limes as condiment and lemon grass for assam pedas. It was so fun to cook while in Alokarama as those herbs are easily available as they are also planted just outside the kitchen area.

There are so many fruit trees (durian, papaya, jackfruit, duku langsat, mulberry), flowers (birds of paradise, ylang ylang, kerak nasi, jasmine & etc), herbs, leafy & aquatic plants (lotus & waterlily) in the Alokarama's orchard. I will try to share them here with all of you in the next few days.

Durian fruits on tree.

I don't know what's the name of this herb. We pruned this plant. I like the beautiful flowers.

Added on 30 Apr 2009. Found on Malaysian Herbs website that this plant is called Ekor Kuching. USAGE : The root of this herb is considered useful for healing bone fractures and for the treatment of urinary diseases, tumors, oedema, burning sensation and difficult breathing. The leaves are considered antiseptic and are used to treat gonorrhoea. The root is credited with aphrodisiac properties; its paste, mixed with water, is used as an antidote for snakebite. Its decoction is prescribed for cough, chiles and fevers. The roots and pods are used in the treatment of anal prolapse in infants, and pods are used to treat sore throat in childrenParts Used: Roots, leaves and pods.

Misai Kucing


Silhoutte of a durian tree

The beautiful view of Gunung Ledang from the stupa site

Banana fruit


All of us planted a plant together with Rev. Mahinda & Sis. Sumangala. The sapling of this fragrant flowering plant was brought back by Rev. Mahinda from Sarnath, India (which was the deer park where the Buddha preached his first sermon).

A video of us planting a plant at Alokarama during the recent Green Thumb Workshop.


Stephanie said...

Hi JC, welcome back. Looks like you have had a great time at the workshop. The mulberry tree look so good with all its berries riping. Are they edible? This garden has so much to offer. The durian tree must have attracted a lot of foreigners :-)... a good way to introduce Malaysia. Take time to enjoy your new found tea concoction. I probably like it with lemon grass :-) Have a great evening!

J.C. said...

Hi Stephanie,

The mulberry trees in Alokarama have many fruits!! It's so tempting to pluck them but they are not fully ripe yet. The ripe mulberries would be purplish red in colour. Compared to the tree that I have at home, mine seems very miserable. I only have one tiny fruit each time. That would take me ages to harvest enough fruit to make mulberry jam. :o(

Ayie said...

the banana fruits and heart blossoms can be cooked in many ways! nice pics!

Manjari said...

Wow, your pictures are so beautiful! I just ran across this from a Google search and I love your pictures. :)

J.C. said...

Thanks Ayie & Manjari for liking the pictures. Do pop by often for a visit!


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