Saturday, December 24, 2011


Dear Readers,

I changed the title of the blog from Taman Herba Vokasma to Li Na Herbs.  Why?  This is because my school will be transformed to a college in 2012.  Hence, Taman Herba Vokasma will no longer be in use.  The new name of the college is Kolej Vokasional Seri Manjung or KVSM for short.  Actually, this blog was initially known as Taman Herba STESMA when my school was a technical school but then it was changed to a vocational school in 2009.  Two years later, it is undergoing another change.
Hmm ... I get dizzy with all the name changes and so decided that the best thing is the just call the blog Li Na Herbs as the URL for the blog is already
Please keep supporting my blog and I promise to work harder to bring information about more herbs to you.

Sincerely yours,
Li Na a.ka. The Herb Fairy


I am pictured with the Dragon's Tail Creeper Epipremnum pinnatum that I planted in the school Herb Garden in 2009. It has taken a while but the plant is now growing healthily. The Chinese use this herb for a number of medicinal purposes. It is said to be anti-inflammatory, febrifuge, cooling, swell reducing and for detoxification.
So how to go about preparing the leaves to be used as medication? Fear not I have the prescription. If you are brave enough, do give it a try.

2 leaves of the dragon tail leaf
10 grammes of black beans
5 red dates
5 glasses of water

Wash the dragon tail leaves and cook it in a pot of water. If you want it to be thicker than reduce the amount of water.
Bring the water to a boil and then lower the heat and then slowly heat the water until the leaves are disintegrated. This is when the concoction is ready. The end product is a green in colour and tastes a bit like Wheat Grass. You can add rock sugar or brown sugar for tasted.


The fruit above does not look pretty. In fact it looks ugly and that is why it is so named.

Ugli is a citrus hybrid between grapefruit and tangerine that grows in Jamaica. Its weird name may be spelled wrong but it really comes from “ugly” in reference to its unappealing, wrinkled skin. But the looks of the Ugli have nothing to do with the taste, it is incredibly delicious and juicy, it takes more from the sweet tangerine and less from the sour grapefruit.
As a curiosity, you should know Ugli is the only fruit in the world that starts with the letter U.



During the holidays, I would brush up on my cooking skills by making some dishes for my friends. A few days ago, I prepared Wanton Mee and a couple of days ago, it was Laksa Singapore. However, I must say that my speciality is preparing fruit dessert. The dish above is the Sang Kor Tong Sui (translated to mean Fruit. As I am a Cantonese, I learnt to make Tong Sui from young. For your information, Tong sui, also known as tim tong, is a collective term for any sweet, warm soup or custard served as a dessert at the end of a meal in Cantonese cuisine. Tong sui is a Cantonese specialty and is rarely found in other regional cuisines of China.

It is actually very easy to prepare. Just boil a pot of water, then add in diced Ya Pears, dried longan, wolfberries, red dates and attap chee (Nypa fruticans). After boiling for about half and hour, add brown sugar. Then it is ready to be served.


I was told by the trader at the market that the spike like flowers are from an ornamental Jambu plant. He said that this species does not bear fruits only flowers. It is quite expensive. The ones in the polybags shown in the pictures were priced at RM35. I was told by the trader that the bigger plants sell for more than RM100 as they are prized for their beautiful flowers which looks like a burst of sunshine.
The actual name for this flowering plant is Golden Penda. In close-up, the long protruding stamens of the Golden Penda ( Xanthosemon chrysanthus) resembles fireworks in the night sky. The Golden Penda belongs to the genus Eugenia and they have the characteristic powder puff-like flowers. The "Jambu" ( Eugenia jambos) and Eugenia oleina flowers also have similar masses of flowers. 

Here is how a full grown Penda Tree looks like. It has masses of flowers. Beautiful, isn't it? LINK