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Discarded Durian Seeds A Money Spinner For Sabah Businessman

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KOTA BELUD (Bernama) – The idiom ‘One man’s trash is another man’s treasure’ holds true for Donny Ien who runs a lucrative enterprise propagating high-value durian species using the discarded seeds of the king of fruits.

During the fruit season between July and December when durians are plentiful, he buys the seeds at about RM3 to RM4 a kilogramme from durian stallholders who collect the seeds after their customers have relished the flesh of the thorny delight.

He then sows the seeds in his nursery to produce rootstock, after which selected premium durian species such as musang king, tembaga and D24 are bud-grafted onto them.

Donny, 39, who has been operating his nursery called Don’s Nursery at his village in Kampung Rangalau, here, since 2017, said the idea of starting his own durian nursery came about some eight years ago when he was working in Penang.

“I saw a lot of potential in durian cultivation because in Penang then, each musang king fruit was priced at up to RM100 a kilogramme,” he told Bernama, adding that he and his wife later returned to Sabah to learn how to propagate durian.

“We had to learn from scratch… I also learned from a friend of mine who has experience producing bud-grafted durian.”

BUD-GRAFTING PROCESS

Explaining the bud-grafting process at his nursery, located on a three-quarter acre plot of leased land overlooking the majestic Mount Kinabalu, Donny said the durian seeds are soaked in water overnight before they are sown in plastic polybags filled with a mixture of yellow and black soil.

Once the rootstock (which refers to the original plant onto which another variety is grafted) grows to a height of half a metre in a month’s time, it is ready for bud-grafting.

To produce a bud-grafted musang king durian tree, a bud from an original musang king tree will be grafted onto the rootstock using a special tape.

Donny, who gets his stock of musang king buds from his aunt’s orchard nearby, said the bud-grafting process, which takes about 21 days to complete, has to be done carefully to ensure its success.

“During the process, the bud itself should not be covered but the area where the grafting is done has to be covered properly to prevent water from seeping in when watering the plant,” said the father of two.

After the 21-day period, the tape has to be removed to enable the bud to grow until it becomes a full-blown tree in four or five years.

Besides bud-grafting, Donny also uses the wedge grafting technique which, he said, enables the grafted plant to grow faster. He is able to graft between 200 and 300 plants a day with the help of his three workers.

IMPORT FROM PASIR MAS

In the early days of experimenting with bud-grafting, Donny met with failure but he did not allow that to dampen his spirits. He kept going until he succeeded and today, he is earning up to RM20,000 a month from his nursery business.

The durian saplings are ready for sale when they are three to four months old with the musang king species, for instance, fetching prices of between RM38 and RM150 each depending on the size.

Donny’s customers are mainly from Kota Belud and Tawau. He also has customers in other districts but due to the current ban on inter-district travel in Sabah, he sends the saplings to them via postal service.

To meet the demand for durian saplings, he also procures small-sized durian plants from Pasir Mas in Kelantan at RM10 each.

At his nursery, Donny also cultivates the dalit durian, which has orange-coloured pulp, and durian bunga merah species which is popular in Sabah, as well as fruits such as pulasan and mangosteen and even avocado and pandan coconut.

Keeping pests such as grasshoppers and snails, and diseases like leaf blight at bay are among the challenges he has to contend with. He has no choice but to use the appropriate pesticides to get rid of the pests because the nursery is his main source of revenue.

Donny, who also conducts courses in Kota Belud and Ranau on durian propagation, also has long-term plans to become a wholesaler for musang king saplings.

He is also currently the editor of a monthly online magazine called “Penjana Hijau” which carries articles on agricultural activities pursued by local youths in Sabah. The magazine, introduced four months ago, is available at https://penjanahijau.com at a subscription fee of RM3 a month or RM36 a year.

Sources: BERNAMA

Lifestyle

There Are Actually Many Bridges Made In Malaysia And These 5 Are Some of Them

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In Malaysia, there are actually so many bridges that have been made in many places. Each of the bridges made has its own uniqueness and also specialties because they have their own uses towards the communities. From the earliest arch and beam bridges to the newest suspension and truss bridges, these are some examples of bridges in Malaysia.

We build bridges to span obstacles, be it a valley, waterway, or another road. A bridge’s function designates its design. A bridge can be temporary, or it can last for millennia. Many Roman bridges are still standing today. No surprise then that bridges often become iconic landmarks for their region.

These are 5 examples of bridges in Malaysia:

1) ASEAN Bridge

Picture: Ranker

The Batang Baram Bridge or ASEAN Bridge is the longest bridge in Miri Division, Sarawak, Malaysia. The bridge is located along Miri-Baram Highway. The ASEAN Bridge is located approximately 2 km upstream of the New Miri Port Complex. The bridge and access road directly link Sarawak with Brunei across the Batang Baram via the existing Immigration Checkpoint at Sungai Tujuh. Construction of the ASEAN Bridge and access road commenced on 17 January 2001 and was completed in August 2003. The bridge is designed in accordance with the latest British Standard BS 5400. The bridge has 19 spans with a total of 1040 meters.

2) Iskandariah Bridge

Picture: Ranker

Iskandariah Bridge or Sultan Iskandar Bridge is one of four major bridges in Kuala Kangsar, Perak, Malaysia with the other one being the Sultan Abdul Jalil Shah Bridge. The 308-meter bridge crosses the Perak River near the town and is made out of steel. The bridge remains the longest steel arch bridge in Malaysia. Traffic on the bridge, however, was greatly reduced when the Sultan Abdul Jalil Shah Bridge a little further downstream was opened to traffic in 2003 in conjunction with the completion of the North-South Expressway.

3) Seri Bakti Bridge

Picture: Ranker

The Seri Bakti Bridge is one of the main bridges in Putrajaya, Malaysia. The bridge links the secondary road to Seri Satria, the Deputy Prime Minister’s Residence, connecting the Government Precinct in the north to Precinct 16 in the south. The concept design was developed from several shorter spans, with a precast pretension “Super-T” beam slab deck with spans up to 35 m (115 ft). The total structure length is 270 m (890 ft). There are dual two-lane carriageways, 2 m (6.6 ft) median, walkway, and cycle track.

4) Putra Bridge

Picture: Ranker

Putra Bridge is the main bridge in Putrajaya, Malaysia. It is analogous to Khaju Bridge in Esfahan, Iran. With a span of 435 meters, this bridge connects the Government Precinct to the Mixed Development Precinct and links Putra Square with the Boulevard. It was constructed in 1997. The upper level of the bridge forms part of the Boulevard. This huge three-deck bridge provides vehicle, monorail, and pedestrian access. Besides providing the link between Precinct 1 and Precinct 2 on the Core Island, it has been designed to be a special feature of Putrajaya. The piers also accommodate fine dining restaurants within its main pillar supports.

5) Sultan Ahmad Shah II Bridge

Picture: Ranker

Sultan Ahmad Shah II Bridge or Semantan Bridge is the longest highway bridge in the East Coast Expressway network. It bridges the Pahang River in Pahang, Malaysia. This 700-meter bridge was opened when the East Coast Expressway was built. It crosses the Pahang River, the longest river in west Malaysia. At the entrance of the bridge, there are 2 elephant trunks that symbolize Pahang. There also many colorful lights around this bridge. This bridge was opened by Sultan of Pahang, Sultan Ahmad Shah on 22 April 2004. Near the bridge is the Temerloh Rest and Service Area.

Sources: Ranker

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This Filipino Man Has The Largest Collection of Fast Food Toys In The World

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We all have memories of going to fast-food restaurants like McDonald’s and KFC and get free toys buying their meals. A man from the Philippines has the largest collection of fast food toys in the world.

Percival Lugue, has been collecting toys from fast-food chains since he was five. Now, at 50, he holds the Guinness Record for the most fast food toys in the world with over 20,000 of them.

Although most of the 20,000 toys in Percival’s collection come from personal purchases, he admits that he did have some help from friends and family. Sometimes he would “guide” them toward helping him, by inviting them to have lunch at a fast-food restaurant, and would manage to complete a whole set of toys in one sitting.

Ever since he got his first toy, he always took care of them. “The toy is like a storyteller in itself. It gives me a glimpse of that particular period when I got it, the story of what’s going on, what are the incidents that are attached in the acquisition.”

Working as a graphic artist, he has a three-story house in Apalit, Pampanga Province to store his collection. He dreams of putting the toys on display and gives people a chance to ‘revisit their own childhood memories’.

Source: SCMP, Oddity Central

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Lifestyle

Truly Unexpected! Cats Used To Deliver Mail In A City In Belgium

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Before email and modern transportations, carrier pigeons are used to deliver mail as well as horses, camels, dogs, and even reindeer in Alaska. However, did you know in Belgium, cats were used to deliver the news?

In 1876, members of the Belgian Society for the Elevation of the Domestic Cat trained 37 domestic cats to deliver mail in the Liège. Waterproof bags with letters tied around the cats’ necks and they were driven out of the countryside. Once within five hours to destination, they make their way and found their way back in 24 hours.

This scheme however never got its full potential as it lacks inefficiency.

In 2007, Gretchen Lamont wrote The Mail-Carrier Cats of Liège a book about the whole affair. Because quite a few details about the origin are missing. Although, some say it is slightly fictional.

It is quite possible that the Belgian Society for the Elevation of the Domestic Cat got its inspiration for the mail cats scheme from a practice called cat racing, which was supposedly popular in northern Europe around the 1860s.

In a book by Harrison Weir called Our Cats and All About Them,  the first cat to make its way home won a prize hamper of ham, sausages, cigars, and other goodies.

It is still practiced until recently at the annual Curruñao festival in San Luis. However,  in 2013 the festival was suspended for animal cruelty. Peruvian magistrate Maria Luyo was quoted as saying the event “caused grave social damage and damaged public health” in her ruling – good news for animal-lovers everywhere.

Source: The Culture Trip

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