Meet the vibrant evergreen Mentepongan tree on Belitung Island, known for its rich nectar. These trees, reaching heights of up to 26 meters, thrive in diverse environments. Local wild honey farmers in Petikan Village collect abundant honey during the flowering season, thanks to these nectar-packed trees. Our reserve values them for supporting various bee species, making them essential for our honey farm.

Vernonia arborea, an evergreen shrub or tree within the Asteraceae family, attains heights of 15 to 26 meters. Locally sourced from the wild, it serves as both a medicinal resource and a timber supply. Thriving as a sub-canopy tree, it is commonly found in forest gaps, secondary growth areas, disturbed sites, and along roads, adapting to diverse environments such as swamps, riversides, hillsides, and dry ridges, reaching elevations up to 1,600 meters. On Belitung Island, these trees, known as “”Mentepongan,”” meaning rich in nectar, attract bees, butterflies, and flies. During their flowering season, wild honey farmers in Petikan Village collect substantial amounts of wild honey, particularly from the Apis dorsata species. In our reserve, the Mentepongan tree plays a crucial role by providing nectar for various bee species, notably supporting Trigona species in our honey farm and Apis cerana species for wild honey production.