Meranti Kepong Hantu / Meranti Pasir
Scientific name: Shorea macrantha
Family name: Dipterocarpaceae
Meranti Kepong Hantu trees in Taman Tugu
The Meranti Kepong Hantu tree is an indigenous rainforest tree that are amongst the 4,100 trees added to the Taman Tugu site, selected in collaboration with Forest Research Institute of Malaysia (“FRIM”) and Malaysian Nature Society (“MNS”).
It is a latex-containing, small to medium sized tree, which can grow up to 40m tall.
When young, it’s bark is studded with large diffuse lenticels and become irregularly fissured when matured. It produces colourless sticky resin shortly after cutting.
Its leaves are opposite, stalked, oval to elliptic is shape, 6.5-15.5cm long and 3.5-7.6cm wide. The flowers have sepals that are pink or rose-red on the exterior and cream-yellow in the interior, and cream petals. Its round fruits are bright rose-red when ripe, up to 5cm wide and smell of apples. The nut is about 5cm long and calyx lobes are about 2cm high.
The tree is commonly used in some spiritual ceremonies. The seeds contain edible nut oil that is eaten in western Sarawak as Engkabang bungkus. The oil can also be used in making soap, candles, polishes and cosmetics.
It is also suitable for planting along streetscapes, parks, gardens, and coastal areas/parks for its dense leafy crown.
The Meranti Kepong Hantu trees are tropical trees and grow in primary rainforest, peat swamps, and near rivers. These trees are native to Malaysia and Indonesia.