... once upon a time ... a long long time ago ...

Small satchets of happenings from pockets of my life, as lapses of memories rewind to the particular place, moment and time ... realities of life
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Friday, April 24, 2009

Pokok Ketapang and Senduduk

Atok Usop has this liking to plant "Pokok Ketapang" (Indian Almond Leaves) in the house compound (laman rumah). It provides a lot of shades from the sun. There were always a few Ketapang Tree in the house. However, the leaves do drop and shred more often than others; and as such it leaves more leave rubbish on the ground - and it has to be cleared / cleaned up every time. We have to sweep the grounds where the Ketapang Tree lives; usually more often than not. The broom wear faster than it should as it it used more often to clear the 'ketapang' leaves.

Atok Usop provides us with the solution. Off we went to the bushes near the road sides or near padi fields to look for "Pokok Senduduk" (Melastoma malabathricum. Common name : Straits Rhododendron). We will look for a few shrubs of this almost up to 2 metres, cut it off at the roots base and shred all the leaves. Tie a few of the 'senduduk plant' together -v and hey presto it is now a large broom. Since the branches and twigs are tough, it makes good sweeping of the grass less compound, especially the 'ketapang' leaves!

The 'senduduk' have always been used for medicinal purposes : For piles : Use roots of the shrub; cut the roots into small pieces; boil the cut roots with a pot of water until 1/3 of a pot; drink the concoction; take about 3 times a week; should see some result and continue until cure. For high blood pressure and diabetes : Eat the young shoot as 'ulam'; For other uses : Lady's white discharge; herbal bath and diarrhea. Its distinguish features : Attractive purple flowers and dark purplish edible fruit.

We have always used the 'senduduk' plants to replace expensive brooms - to sweep our house compound. However, if you eat the 'senduduk' fruits, you will have purple tongue and lips for the whole day!

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