Thursday, April 28, 2011

The Fate of One Thousand Young Trees

Wake up, Starwood! Your "babies" are now struggling to survive in this terrible hot weather and possibly in the suicidal mode.

The Mother Earth may be grateful in your quests to make the planet a greener place for the homosapiens to live in. However, She may not be pleased too. 


Bukit Hantu, Langkawi. Earth day on 22nd April 2011. 1000 saplings were planted on the dry open land by staffs the Starwood hotels and resorts. Wonderful efforts to recognise Earth Day!

But, what's next?

A recent check in Bukit Hantu revealed that the saplings planted were withering and the soil condition was hard dry. 
 Very dry soil
Leaves drying out. Can you see those tiny white spots next to the lake? Those are the flags

Another eye sore was those white flags with the drawings tied to tens of poles and tags standing among the saplings. It is cool to be flamboyant once in a while, however, who will clear all these white flags when they became rubbish later?

Bendera berkibar-kibar... a sign of 1Malaysia Boleh...

With the current dry spell, these young saplings are in desperate need of TLC (Tender Loving Care). When young trees are kept in polybags, there are usually well watered and fertilised in control environment ie. away from the direct sun exposure. During that period, these saplings became so comfortable that they developed root balls. When these saplings got to be planted on different grounds, they lacked the full capability of absorbing water from its surrounding soil. 

From a botanist's or a horticulturist's point of view, when saplings are in full sun, strict watering plan must be followed and not just leaving them to Mother Nature to do the rest. SOS needed for these young trees!

Four hundred young trees were planted on the same site almost two years ago for the World Environment Day. And yet, what happened to those young trees? Haven't we learned from the past?

Like most "greening" programs, it is sad to see so much funds wasted. 



  1. Very true indeed...

    Like all typical 'greening/protecting the Earth' projects, this one suffered the same after effects of neglect and 'couldn't care less' attitude.

    One way to tackle this is to appoint somebody to take care of it, but I suspect not many are willing to take that job!

  2. Hi JK,
    This is the usual case of a corporate marketing gimmick and their CSR with the media highlights, blah...blah...

    I think there are contractors who are willing to do the job of maintaining the saplings provided those corporates are willing to spend that amount of $$$.

  3. I checked the place out... so much for "Making A Difference"!

    All the PR and big hullabaloo to project an eco and environmentally responsible image by planting trees but Starwood Hotels & Resorts forgot the one other thing that does matter: To clean up after the act.

    There are now more rubbish there than before... all those flags (not counting flagpoles and sticks), the red-white marker tapes, the laminated papers with numbers, a banner, a few styrofoam packs, bits and pieces left to scar the earth.

    It's now after the fact: Headlines are already in the news, the reporters and camera crew are gone now.

    A campaign to adopt a tree and money collected.
    A thousand saplings were then planted.
    A step in the right direction for all to see.
    A step backward for Mother Earth to plea.
    A hundred pieces of rubbish left by the lake.
    A positive image for Starwood in the wake?
    A big difference it did make!

  4. Hi Mandy,
    Thank you for your wonderful poetic constructive criticism for them!

    Also, thanks for checking that area too. We are once again the "Roving Trainers" isn't it?

    I am so tempted to write about this in our local news. Hmm...

  5. Yup, always a-roving... haha
    Glad you like my little write-up.
    You're most welcome.

  6. Hi wchinner,
    I tried to make a post but it didn't work. Hope it works this time.
    Could you please tell me, whether all the planted trees were lost, or how many in your oppinion did survive to this day?
    Thanks for your answer,
    Mark at


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