Thursday, April 14, 2011

FRIM in Snippets (And some words.)

My Mom organised a trip to FRIM's (Forest reserve institution Malaysia. Yes! I finally remembered it by heart.) tissue culture lab (Because my 7 yr old brother was interested but was most of the time not very interested in it, oh well.) with a home school group and as usual.. I was not all that excited to go (And it collided with my beauty sleep since we had to leave at.. err.. 8-ish or so. I AM NOT A MORNING PERSON. i am a evening person. smiley face*)  but that all changed once I found out that...
I GOT TO WEAR A LAB COAT (And some horrible looking sterilized pasar malam slippers! But the lab coat part got me VERY excited! I think I should get one and wear it when I am caking, lab coats make me happy..) in the tissue culture lab!

And that tissue culture was pretty interesting too.
I suppose.

These are some tongkat ali roots in a test tube? test jar? well you get the picture, we saw in the lab. 
They are kept in some water? (Drat I forgot to ask what special liquid it was!), on a shaky surface and covered with a black plastic bag.
A few dozen glass test tube jar thingies are kept on a earth quake like surface to increase the amount of oxygen in (The plant and roots are BLEACHED before they are put into the test tube thingies to make sure that there are no fungi and disease, it is amazing how they do not die.) the "test tube" (The "test tubes" are sealed with aluminium foil and some cling wrap so that the "things" in it are clean and sterilized).
A plant's natural instinct to light is to grow leaves so it has to be kept in the dark if you just want the "root" to grow.

Loved seeing "test tubes" and "test tubes" of leaf-less roots!
It was interesting finding all this out, which I had to ask because the rest of the participants and explainer didn't ask at all and didn't explain the whole picture.  

This is what they use instead of soil to grow the "plantlings".

A "plantling", guess what species/plant this is!
It was miniaturized (For some reason they just are because they are growing on agar and not soil but if you "release" them back they would go back to normal.) and I found that VERY cute.. and interesting of course!  

Another interesting thing I found in the lab was the desk they worked on which had an "air-conditioner" above it with a very tiny? powerful? filter which blows out only sterilized air and that's the ONLY place where you can actually open (With sterilized gloves of course. Sterilized, sterilized.. That's the only word you hear in there!) the miniature tissue culture plants.
And before they start work in the morning the UV ray all the desks for 15 minutes to kill all the bacteria.
I might die of cleanliness in there.   

A tree with huge, thin, wide roots, the guide said you could use it to build a rest place or... A toilet! 

We went jungle tracking after that and there was a swarm of mozzies after me! AHHHHHGGH!*
And after our trip to Mulu in March I had ENOUGH of jungles for a while, so it was pretty disappointing that I had to go in one today!
The two jungle-y photos are the only 2 things I found interesting and different from the other jungles.

Just mind blowing isn't it?
I have never seen such pretty trees in my ENTIRE life!

We went to cool down by the stream after the jungle tracking.
Here are some random snippets.


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