Ripening durians at Green Acres.
Balik Pulau is where nutmegs and cloves were once cultivated. Now it’s home to fruit orchards – most famously, durians. Some orchards arrange durian feasts, while others have homestays for those wishing to immerse themselves in protracted heady enjoyment of the king of fruits. Penang Monthly looks at three of them.
It was 2009 when Eric Chong and his wife Kim Wong purchased their orchard after stumbling upon it during a hike. Covering 16 acres, Green Acres is home to over 30 variants of durian, six types of rambutan and five types of langsat.
“We cultivated durian trees to offset the cost of maintaining such a large tract of land,” says Chong. “Over time, they began to produce more than what we could consume, leading us to sell the durians – which eventually became a business.”
The couple have been lucky – they had crucial help and expertise in tending to the orchard. “The son of the former caretaker still works here and constantly guides us,” says Chong.
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