One of the oldest trees in Miri left standing proudly is the panaga tree at the Hawaii Beach. It must be at least 50 years old according to one of the residents there.
Panaga trees grow fairly tall after 10 - 15 years and are very sturdy as this one is.
Nowadays it is widely cultivated in all tropical regions of the world, including several Pacific Islands. It is no doubt a beautiful ornamental plant.
I like it because it has fragrant flowers.
The Council of Miri had planted lots of them along the road in Luak Bay and I wonder if they will all grow to their fullest size of 20 metres in the future!!
Do you know that in Sanskrit this tree is known as punnaga.
In English this tree is also called Ballnut and also Alexandrian Laurel.
If you walk along the concrete paths in Luak Bay you might see lots of fruit skins left behind by bats which love the fruit. Little green fruits can be seen this time of the year. Not too long ago the trees were flowering.
If you ever go to Hawaii Beach in Miri go in the evening when the sun is just about to set at six and you will enjoy the golden hour. This Panaga Tree will beckon to you. Leaving the beach after an enjoyable walk you kind of feel a little sad because you have to bid farewell to the lonely tree.
But it will be alright won't it? No one will cut it down for firewood I hope.