PASIR PUTEH: Hidden in the village of Kampung Kelubi here is a house almost entirely covered in foliage, which a couple and their four children have been calling home for the past 20 years.
Amizar Adnan, 48, and her husband Wan Mamat Wan Junoh, 52, have raised their children in the house that netizens are now dubbing the “Hobbit House” for its likeness to the homes depicted in the J.R.R. Tolkien novel, The Hobbit.
The house gained attention after a picture of it was posted on Facebook and went viral, garnering over 58,000 likes.
Comments ranged from amused to scathing, with some accusing the owners of being lazy for letting creepers and climbers overrun their house, in Kelantan.
However, the couple have a very good reason for letting their home go green.
Amizar said her husband had the idea of planting creepers to increase the 70-year-old wooden house’s structural integrity after its walls started rotting and coming apart.
“My husband has repaired our home many times but the repairs never lasted long. Then, he came up with the idea of preventing the walls from falling apart by using plants to hold the wood together,” she said when met at her home.
Although it was an unusual idea, Amizar said she decided to go along with it because their house was in danger of becoming more run down by the day.
Wan Mamat’s idea was successful and it came with an added bonus – the plants have made their home cooler.
The creepers, said Amizar, did not only provide structural integrity but also kept their house as cool as if it were air-conditioned.
Amizar, who runs her own business, said her family kept their home and surroundings clean and tidy.
“Before I go to work, I would spend an hour or more cleaning. We have yet to find any dangerous insects or snakes inside,” she said.
Wan Mamat, who is also self-employed, said he had no plans to upgrade the house.
“Maybe I will continue working on strengthening its structure but I would keep its original design. We are comfortable here,” he said.
Besides attracting quite a number of tourists, it is a favourite location for wedding photo shoots.
His son, Wan Mohd Hasanudin Wan Mamat, said friends visiting for the first time often found it hard to believe he lived there.
“It is only upon entering that they see that inside, my house looks just like theirs,” said the 25-year-old. — Bernama