Monday, August 10, 2009

2 Lovely covers from Malaysia!

On 23 July 2009, Malaysia Post issued a lovely set of postage stamps entitled "Tuber Plants", and this can be seen on the 2 FDCs sent by Khor Kok Keong. Thanks very much bro!

So what exactly is a Tuber?
Technically speaking, a tuber isn't really a vegetable at all. Interestingly, the word tuber comes from the verb in Latin meaning to swell, tumere. Basically, the tuber is the part of the plant found under the ground that is engorged or swollen and is used by the plant to store food and nutrients. There are even two different kinds of tuber; the stem tuber and the root tuber.

Tuber Plants are the second most important source of carbohydrates in the world’s food, the most important being cereals. However, in the tropical world, root crops are proportionally much more important. In fact, in many tropical countries where rice is not grown, they are the staple diet. In general the protein content is low, but some, like potato and yam provide significant amounts of certain vitamins.

The four beautiful stamps in this series depict Sweet Potato (Ipomoea batatas), Cassava or commonly called Tapioca (Manihot esculenta), Sengkuang or yam bean (Pachyrrhizus erosus) and Yam (Dioscorea alata L.). While the miniature sheet features Taro or Cocoyam (Colocasia esculenta).

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