Cambodia has millions of sugar palms dotting the countryside and the multi-purpose tree is a national icon. Another lesser-known type of palm tree – the talipot palm – is not as common in Cambodia and has had less obvious uses traditionally for agriculture or industry.
Now, a community enterprise has started selling long-lasting household products made from its wood.
With a majestic inflorescence that has the largest flowering in the world, the talipot palm – known as the traing in Khmer – can be seen growing abundantly in Chhaeb district of Preah Vihear province in northern Cambodia.
The community – located in the nature reserve area of Chhaeb district – has learned about the benefits of these trees and have found creative uses for them by making them into kitchen or dining utensils and home decor products.