All posts by Mei Mei Chow

Heath soil is far from basic

Interviewed: Giacomo Sellan, plant scientist (giacomo.sellan@ecofog.gf)

(Photo: Heath forest in Kabili-Sepilok Forest Reserve, Sabah | Pic by Giacomo Sellan)

The Ibans call heath forests “Kerangas”, which means “lands that will not grow rice”. And it is not just rice that could not make it there. 

As one treks from the lush lowland forests into heath forests, the trees change. Tall, thick trees give way to stunted ones with gnarled branches and “gracious” leaves, looking similar to bonsai trees, says plant scientist Giacomo Sellan.

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What It Takes to Manage Landslides

Floods might hog the current natural disaster news in Malaysia, but landslides are occurring too. Does Malaysia have what it takes to handle landslides?

CARRYING her one-month-old baby, Pricila Gracelyn rushed out from her hillside house in Penampang, Sabah in terror and pain as a big falling tree and cascading mud almost split her home into two.

“I was just about to lay my baby down on the bed when I suddenly heard a loud sound coming from above us. I thought it was thunder,” remembers Gracelyn.

“Maybe it’s my instincts, I carried my baby and escaped from the room, and in a blink [of an eye], our house was destroyed by the landslide.”

(Composite photo: Soil and trees destroyed Gracelyn’s house in Penampang, Sabah in September | Pics by Pricila Gracelyn)

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