Sunday, May 15, 2022

Mengkuang leaves

Pokok mengkuang (screwpine) atau botanically name Pandanus artocarpus is a large shrub pandan-like plant that grows along the back mangroves and also found in the local jungles. It grows abundantly in the coastal regions of Southeast Asia and the Pacific Islands.

Mengkuang weaving has started long before the history of Modern Malaysia till today. Mengkuang weaving usually practiced by womenfolk in the rural kampung areas.
The leaves after having stripped of its thorns, are first are split into long strands, soaked and dried in the sun. Once dried, it is boiled and dyed with vegetable colors.

As a popular craft material, screw-pine leaves are proven to be good material with decent strength and flexibility. The end products range from baskets, food covers, mats to some souvenir items such as coin porch, hand-holding fan, slipper etc.

Mats made of mengkuang leaves can provide a comfortable sense of use both as a sitting mat and sleeping with the weather of the dry season. Most of these weavers are women, who make these products to provide supplemental income to their local communities.
Mengkuang leaves

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