Whoa! Finally got that tingling feel of what it's like to be dwarfed by one of the hugely2 massive indigenous palms - known locally as the 'enau'. It's petrifying - quite like coming face to face with the abominable snowman or a yeti. The fronds of the palm are so long and large that they almost resemble the gigantic hairy arms ready to enfold someone. So, scary was an understatement when standing beside (beneath?) this humongous plant.
Also known as the Gomuti Palm, it is widely found in India, Indonesia, South-east Asia and Malaysia.
A look at the trunk is even more scary. Loads of black, rough fibres enclosing the trunk coupled with long spindly black needles around them. As this palm is found wild in the lowland forests, the trunk was unkempt and looked quite a tangled eerie mess.
robust fibre covers
The infloresence bears a bunch of small yellowish flowers and the round/oval fruits when mature turns purple.
Passed by several palms of the same species that were in fruit, however, as was travelling by coach, unable to request a photo stop.
A sweet sap can be tapped from the inflorescence stalk to make a rough palm sugar or be fermented into a crude alcohol drink. In addition, its young cabbage is edible too while the pith also yields a form of sago starch.
Overall, it does appear to be a strong, attractive palm and thrives in the tropics. Unfortunately, not the sort for a home garden or landscaping feature.
That's the 3rd specimen of palms gathered from around the sleepy Kuala Selangor/Sekinchan districts. I have had a field day as you all can see. Great fun indeed!