The pinang tree has been a part of Penang for countless generations.
With its many uses from trade to health to culture, the tree is a potent, unifying symbol for the island's rich history and its diverse people. There are far fewer trees today than 500 years ago, but they still remain inseparable from Penang’s identity.
The pinang fruit is known as the betel rut. It is really an areca nut,traditionally wrapped with a betel leaf, or sirih, then chewed. Mineral lime is often added to extract the most out of the areca.
The nut contains tannin, galic acid, lignin, alkaloids, fixed oil gums, terpineol and saline substances. The pinang tree can usually be grown in a tropical climate, is sensitive to cold temperatures and needs regular watering.
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