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  • News & article

    Worthy of a name

    B Magazine, Normita Thongtham, Published on 04/12/2016

    » Piya Chalermglin, PhD, intrepid plant explorer and extraordinary researcher at the Thailand Institute of Scientific and Technological Research, recently retired. He spent 20 years of his career surveying the country's plant genetic resources, particularly Magnoliales, which includes the custard apple family Annonaceae and the magnolia family Magnoliaceae. In the process, he earned the distinction of having discovered 17 species new to science, joining the likes of famous botanist Carl Linnaeus and other plant explorers who immortalised their names by inspiring the names of some plants.

  • News & article

    Oasis in the concrete jungle

    B Magazine, Normita Thongtham, Published on 30/10/2016

    » It rained hard in the wee hours of the morning that day I went to King Chulalongkorn Memorial Hospital two weeks ago. As I walked past the Department of Laboratory Medicine building, a sudden burst of sound filled the air. I stopped to look and listen, and was mesmerised by what I saw.

  • News & article

    On the hunt for the plant thieves

    B Magazine, Normita Thongtham, Published on 07/12/2014

    » Why would someone steal the world's rarest water lily? That was the question asked by Sam Knight in an article published in the British newspaper The Guardian recently. He wrote the lengthy article after the smallest water lily in the world, the Nymphaea thermarum, whose white flowers measure less than 1cm across, was stolen from — of all places — the Princess of Wales Conservatory in the Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew in London.

  • News & article

    The strength of the land

    B Magazine, Normita Thongtham, Published on 23/10/2016

    » I once wrote an article about His Majesty the King's Royal Project for an information and policy studies institute in London, which commissioned me to write about development issues in this part of the world.

  • News & article

    The plants are bugged

    B Magazine, Normita Thongtham, Published on 03/04/2016

    » There’s a sad footnote to the story about Petchsuporn Rapley’s date palms in Doi Saket, Chiang Mai (Green Fingers, March 6). For those who did not read the article, Ms Petchsuporn planted some 100 date palms as an experiment a little over three years ago. A year later two trees started to flower, followed by a few more last year. Braving sharp-as-nails giant thorns, she and her workers cross-pollinated the trees manually and these successfully bore fruit for the first time last year.

  • News & article

    A date with destiny

    B Magazine, Normita Thongtham, Published on 06/03/2016

    » If I remember it right, Thais started to plant Phoenix dactylifera, or date palm, in the 1980s. I have never heard of the trees successfully bearing fruit, so I put it down to the climate.

  • News & article

    The mother of all blooms

    B Magazine, Normita Thongtham, Published on 09/08/2015

    » I used to give my mum a white rose on Mother’s Day, which is celebrated on the second Sunday of May in the Philippines, where I grew up. Now that I am a mother and grandmother, I get jasmine instead.

  • News & article

    La vie en rose

    B Magazine, Normita Thongtham, Published on 07/06/2015

    » ‘A thing of beauty is a joy for ever: Its loveliness increases; it will never pass into nothingness…” English poet John Keats was not thinking about roses in particular when he wrote that poem in 1818; he only mentioned “musk-rose blooms” in passing. Yet, there is probably no other flower which has given so much joy since ancient times than the rose.

  • News & article

    Try hedging your bets

    B Magazine, Normita Thongtham, Published on 05/04/2015

    » Reader Poonsri Pupipat wrote to say that she lives in a very busy lane used as a shortcut by all types of vehicles from early morning to late at night. She planted rows of Polyathia longifolia var pandurata trees, known in Thai as asoke India, along both sides of her fence to alleviate noise and air pollution, but two died recently.

  • News & article

    Fruit in a barren land

    B Magazine, Normita Thongtham, Published on 25/01/2015

    » When life gives you lemons, make lemonade. Citrus fruit aside, that was exactly what happened when His Majesty the King was given a piece of land in Thung Sai Yai, in the village of Khao Tao in Hua Hin, Prachuap Khiri Khan province, in the late 1960s.

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