Thursday, November 27, 2008

Of Pins and Bowling Balls

This blog is not about the game/sport of bowling. It is more about what goes into a game for you to enjoy it. Probably besides the lane and the player, the more important components of the game are the 10 pins and the ball. You would probably think that pinoy trees would not figure into the equation but it does, in a small - little and traditional way. It goes like this...

When I was researching about mangkono or Xanthostemon verdugonianus (yes a native plant) i encountered the fact that the hardwood of this Philippine species was used in making the hard bowling balls. Mangkono is an endemic plant found in Surigao in Mindanao and some other Visayan Islands. The lumber is the famed Philippine ironwood - dubbed as the hardest in the Philippine forest. A single grown tree could not be cut in a couple of days by lumberjacks. The pictures of mangkono are from Ime Sarmiento of Hortica Filipina.

Traditional bowling pins were also made from another Philippine native, supa or Sindora supa. The supa is a good lumber tree from the forests of Luzon and Mindoro. The Bureau of Plant Industries states that oil could be extracted from supa, which could be used as oil for lamps and as paint or varnish material.

So throw in the lane, which is probably made of narra, molave, yakal or any other hard wood then you could have a very Filipino bowling game. Probably why we produce a lot of bowling champions... nah. Hehehe.

ADDENDUM: A friend of mine, Ronald Achacoso, read this blog. He said that he heard from a native material specialist that old bowling lanes were also made from Sindora supa wood. The grain of supa, he said, is lovely, which is why some people still hunt down old abandoned bowling lanes in provinces just to salvage the wood for furniture making and architectural finishes.


mom said...

azymothGood morning po. Maaari po bang hingin ang inyong permiso na magamit angkopya ng picture ng mangkono na naka-post sa inyong blog? Kaso po hindi po nakabukas ang pictures sa post ninyo kaya di rin po makita. Pwede po bang makopya po ang larawang ng isang puno ng mangkono? salamat

Jovelle Concerman said...

Hi Good day Ma'am/Sir, I would like to ask where i could find or avail a Mangkono seedling? I'm on a training, one of our assignment is to bring a seedling of tree assigned to our group for planting and environmental restoration.. I've read that Mangkono tree is a rare tree and endemic in our country.. i'm residing in Metro Manila, could you suggest where i could find a seedling of its kind? Thank you and hoping for your soonest reply.. Godbless