Scientists have recently discovered that palm trees may have once grown all over Antarctica!
Did you know that the African Raffia Palm gets the spotlight for having the longest leaf, measuring 25.11m – that’s the length of 7 mini coopers!
Last Saturday we launched our very latest Guidebook on the Native Palms of Singapore and our all new iSpied iPhone App! The event unfolded into three parts: two talks were given on the guidebook and the app, which were followed by a walk-around the mini-exhibition, and which was ended with a stroll among the palm trees populating our ecogarden.
The authors of the guidebook, Adrian and Wee Foong, started first by giving a talk on why they decided to write a book about palms – i.e. to promote awareness about some of the alarming situations occuring in the world. Many well-known palms are dying out or are close to extinction because of the demand for more palm plantations, which destroys existing forests, and their flora and fauna, in order to be planted. Urbanization is another important player – it can be seen quite distinctly, here, in Singapore. The authors peppered their talks with jokes and funny palm images, and they even brought in some products of palms, that were passed around in the audience, to look, hold, sniff and even eat!
Then, our recurrent writer for our Stir-Fried Science blog, and the person who mothered iSpied into existence, Kiat Teng, presented the iPhone app! She told us about some of its great features, which can be used to snap up any funky looking plants, trees, insects or animals you see! You can then, either identify it, or request for its identification. In this way, you’re able to grow your knowledge about the creeping crawling world as well grow the knowledge of others in a few quick and simple steps!
After Q&A session ended, the audience was invited to wander around the palm mini-exhibition set up for those who were a bit more curious and wanted to learn a little more about these useful and intriguing trees. One of the exhibits was a very tall, very live palm called the Lipstick Palm, and another showcased the huge club-like fruit of the Nipah Palm its entirety, along with other colourful little products of palms and plenty of fun facts on palms!
The event was a hit! People were buzzing around after the talk, asking questions, sharing stories, having a few laughs, and even requesting the authors to autograph their new Guidebook copies! The morning was wrapped up with a very interactive stroll in the SCS’s ecogarden by our palm experts. They stopped at most of the palms to provide the audience with some descriptive information the audience could relate to, as well as some fun facts about them.
If you were not able to attend the launch on Saturday, don’t worry! Our mini-exhibition on Palms will still be around for another few weeks, so feel free to drop by the Science Centre Singapore to discover more!
To view more images of our event, please click here.