Malabar Tamarind (Garcinia gummi-gutta)

All my life, I’ve seen a number of unusual flowers and fruit, but growing up in Singapore, you kind of get used to the general type of strange the island nurtures. This time though, the bright orange, pumpkin-like fruits peppering this tree’s branches intrigued me. Obviously I wasn’t tall enough to get close (not that…

Oaks (Quercus sp.)

The continuum of time numbs our senses, one season flowing into the next. It would happen on occasion that I’d suddenly look down one day to find the first buds bursting forth from bare branches, just freshly thawed after the season’s snows, or glanced up to find that the trees were looking a lot more…

Mimosa pudica

We loved finding this plant by the roadside when we were kids, because despite it being called ‘touch-me-not’, I assure you we did precisely the opposite. Of course we all know that flowers bloom and fruits grow and such, but to see a plant actually close its leaves in front of your eyes in a…

European Holly (Ilex aquifolium)

It’s funny how holly has become a universal symbol of winter and Christmas across much of the world- even in Singapore, where we don’t even have holly, or a winter for that matter. We’re all familiar with the typical getup: glossy dark green leaves, framing a cluster of perfectly round, bright red berries (well, technically,…