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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

Health

Food Review: COVID-19 Variant Getting Stronger, Try These 5 Foods To Boost Immune System

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COVID-19 cases continue to rise, taking daily precautions such as washing your hands, social distancing, exercising, and getting enough sleep is key to lowering the risk of infection. COVID-19 was declared a global pandemic by the World Health Organization. Maintaining a healthy diet to help boost your immune system may also give you an edge.

Individuals with certain pre-existing illnesses like diabetes, hypertension, cardiovascular disease, and respiratory issues are at a higher risk of having COVID-19 complications, it also aggravates with age as the general immunity reduces as you get older. It is important for your immune system to stay in tip-top shape. Try these 5 foods.

1) Yogurt

Picture: Medical News Today

Yogurt is a great source of probiotics, which are good bacteria that can help promote a healthy gut and immune system. Recent studies have also found probiotics to be effective for fighting the common cold and influenza-like respiratory infections. Sarin recommends choosing plain yogurt rather than anything too flavored or sweetened and topping it with fruit and honey.  Those on a dairy-free diet can still benefit from almond milk and coconut milk yogurt options.

2) Broccoli

Picture: BBC Good Food

Broccoli is also rich in vitamin C. Just half a cup contains 43% of your daily value of vitamin C. Broccoli is packed with phytochemicals and antioxidants that support our immune system. It also contains vitamin E, an antioxidant that can help fight off bacteria and viruses. To get the most out of this powerhouse vegetable, eat it raw or just slightly cooked.

3) Garlic

Picture: NDTV Food

Not only is garlic full of flavor, but it’s packed with health benefits such as lowering blood pressure and reducing the risk of heart disease. Garlic’s immunity-boosting abilities come from its heavy concentration of sulfur-containing compounds, which can help fight off some infections. Garlic has been shown in the past to help ward off the common cold. It is an easy vegetable to work into your diet. You can add to it anything from pasta sauce and salad dressings to soups and stir-fry dishes.

4) Red Bell Peppers

Picture: Food Sources Information

Red bell peppers reign supreme when it comes to fruits and vegetables high in vitamin C. One cup of chopped red bell peppers contains about 211% of your daily value of vitamin C. That is about twice more than an orange has. Vitamin C contributes to immune defense by supporting a variety of cell functions and can lower the risk of respiratory infections. It can also help the growth and repair of tissues in your body. Daily intake of vitamin C is essential for good health because our bodies do not produce it naturally.

5) Mushrooms

Picture: USDA

While sun exposure is the best source of vitamin D, it can also be provided by some foods, including mushrooms. Mushrooms as a vitamin D source found that the ‘sunshine vitamin’ can help enhance the absorption of calcium, which is good for bone health and may also protect against some cancers and respiratory diseases. Mushrooms are great as a side dish or appetizer.

Sources: healthline.

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Lifestyle

Celebrating Merdeka From Home? You Can Do It In 5 Great Ways!

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Only a few days till our Independence Day! Imagine those colorful parades, flags everywhere, Merdeka songs, fireworks, and lots more. Our country’s independence day falls on 31st August every year. This year will be our 64th year of independence.

Despite our country going through the National Recovery Plan, there are still many ways we can show our love towards the country from our home. Here’s some way you can try:

1. Watch Merdeka-theme movies

Picture: Lehigh Center

Don’t let the pandemic slow you down. Huddle up and binge-watch Merdeka-theme or any Malaysian movies that will definitely bring your patriotism spirit alive. Here’s a suggestion, Mukhsin, admire the elitism of the Malaysia Special Force Naval unit in Paskal or watch the wacky romantic comedy All Because of You to appreciate Desaru’s beauty.

2. Virtual karaoke

It is super easy to host meetings through Zoom, Google Meet, Whatsapp calls or Microsoft Teams. To make your karaoke session smooth, download Watch2Gether- a free social video website that enables you to sync videos and content with your party.

The app enables everyone in your karaoke group to watch the same YouTube videos at the same time. Then, create a room, search for the karaoke version of the song, and queue it using the sign +. What’s more, party your way!

3. Play traditional games

Picture: Three Trees Workshop

In Malaysia, we have various traditional games from different cultures. Some of it are batu seremban,kelereng and congkak. The kelereng is a Malay traditional game of marbles requires the players to flick their opponent’s marble out of the battleground, or into a hole that’s dug into the ground.

Next we have the Batu Seremban. Compete with each other by tossing tiny bean bags and advancing to the next level. The one who tosses and catches fast is declared the winner. Test your maths skill with the congkak game. Anticipate your opponent’s strategy and beat them by clearing those marbles from your side of the board.

Have your very own competition at the convenience of your home with your family and friends.

4.Display flags

Picture: Kerk Chee Yee

One of the easiest ways to show your patriotism is by hanging the Jalur Gemilang flags around. During this time, we can see many housing areas hanging flags on poles, balcony, and even their cars. Some citizens prints their own Merdeka t-shirt or put it on the outside that resembles the colors of the Jalur Gemilang flag.

5.Make your own Merdeka pizza

Picture: Pelbagai Masakan Harian

Here’s a recipe by Chef Zam, a home-based chef that replicates the national flag on pizza!

You’ll need:

  • 1 big red onion (minced)
  • 3 – 4 pips of garlic (minced)
  • 300 gm. chicken fillet or breast (seasoned with salt, pepper, corn flour, and oyster sauce)

For the topping and sauce:

  • Olive oil
  • 1 big red onion (sliced)
  • 1 red capsicum (diced)
  • 1 yellow capsicum (shaped it into a crescent moon and star)
  • Shredded Mozzarella cheese
  • 1 pre-made pizza base. Alternatively, you can use ready-made roti paratha (or frozen flatbread).
  • Prego or Kimball carbonara pasta sauce 
  • Oregano, pepper. and salt to taste
  • Sliced sausages or chicken salami (to form the “blue” area of the flag)

Method: 

  1. Start by frying the pizza toppings. Sauté red onions and garlic with olive oil until fragrant.
  2. Next, add in your chicken slice. Once tender, add in your pasta sauce and cook for 3 minutes till it thickens
  3. Spread the pasta sauce onto your pizza base.
  4. To create the ‘blue area’, add the sliced sausages or chicken salami. Then place the carved-out capsicum star and moon.
  5. For the red and white stripes, arrange the diced capsicum in a row, followed by the grated mozzarella horizontally to create the white stripes. Repeat this until the pizza base is covered.
  6. Bake it for about 5 minutes at 170℃ and you’re done!

There’s nothing compared to the actual way we have always celebrated our independence day. However, with the pandemic still going on, it is best that we stay safe at our various home. That doesn’t mean we have no love towards our country it is because we can still show our patriotism from wherever we are

Wishing all of you Happy 64th Independence Day in advance!

Sources: Celcom

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Health

(Video) So Many Benefits! 4 Ways That We Can Use Olive Oil!

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Olive oil is a liquid fat obtained from olives. The word Olive got mentioned in Quran in different verses. In addition, Prophet Muhammad SAW said “Eat olive oil and massage it over your bodies since it is a holy (Mubarak) tree”. He also stated that olive oil is beneficial to cure 70 diseases. That is why olive oil would bring so many benefits to people.

Olives are the gift from heaven to mankind. Apart from the Date fruit, olives are actually also considered of utmost importance in Islam. For Muslims, the inclusion of the olive and olive oil in religious observance invokes the words of Allah, Muhammad, and even heavenly paradise. These are 4 ways Prophet Muhammad SAW uses olive oil.

@lookmanakimCara Rasulullah ﷺ menggunakan minyak zaitun ##foryoupage ##viral ##islam ##tiktokfoodie ##xyzbca ##fypsounds ##fypviral ##muslim ##muslimah ##Allah ##foodie♬ الصوت الأصلي – maherzainfanforever

The 4 ways are:

1) Prophet Muhammad SAW will dip bread into olive oil.

2) Prophet Muhammad SAW will eat olive and it can also be used as spreading with so many foods. It is recommended to eat 2 spoonfuls of olive oil per day.

3) Prophet Muhammad SAW will massage the olive oil onto the skin for hydration.

4) Prophet Muhammad SAW will use it on the hair to make the hair always healthy.

Sources: TikTok Lookman Akim.

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