Traffic-stopping flowers


People stopping over at the roadside along Jalan Pintas Penampang to take pictures of the flowering trees resembling cherry blossom or sakura trees in Japan.

PENAMPANG: The flowering tecoma trees along a road here are fast becoming a selfie and photography spot.

Over the past few days, people have been uploading pictures of the pink trumpet blooms along Jalan Pintas Penampang on their Facebook pages, with some even claiming to have seen pre-wedding photo shoots.

While the most popular spot is along the Penampang bypass, these flowering trees can be found along other stretches in Penampang and the neighbouring districts of Kota Kinabalu and Putatan.

Tecoma trees are native to South America and their scientific names depend on the colour of the blooms, with the pink Tabebuia rosea being the most common.

“It’s like we are in Japan. They really look like sakura (cherry blossoms), ” said a woman, who was among those who stopped to admire the beautiful flowers, which colour ranges from creamy white to bright pink.

The 62-year-old, who only wished to be known as Julia, said she went to the spot after her daughter took pictures of the location and told her about it.

Kenny Khong, 36, was also seen taking pictures of his seven-year-old son Eugene posing near the trees.

“My son was most excited when we saw the trees as we passed by in our car.

“He wanted to go over to the trees so I made a U-turn. He likes to take pictures and the flowers are so beautiful, ” said Khong, who is originally from Kudat and was here attending to work errands.

While it is not known exactly how long these trees have been around for, the blooms only last about one to two weeks.

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