NewsFirst-ever 100-meter tropical tree discovered – the world’s tallest known flowering plant- has been located, climbed & measured in Sabah, Malaysia.

April 4, 2019
A climber on their way up to measure the tallest tree ever found in the tropics!
Photo by Unding Jami

A team led by the Universities of Nottingham and Oxford, working with the South East Asia Rainforest Research Partnership (SEARRP), announced the discovery of a 330.7-foot (100.8-meter) giant yellow meranti tree (Shorea faguetiana) growing in the Danum Valley Conservation Area. This is the first 100-meter tropical tree recorded anywhere in the world. The scientific study is being published in bioRxiv this week, and is currently in review in a scientific journal.

The tree was originally detected in 2018 by laser scanning the forest from an airplane. These scans were then translated into three dimensional images of the forest canopy, where the giant trees began to emerge. Based on the data provided from the laser, it was estimated that the tree was between 325 feet (99 meters) and 377 feet (115 meters), but in order to verify the exact height it was necessary to climb the tree and measure it by hand with a tape measure.  The SEARRP tree climbing expedition was led by Field Manager Jamiluddin Jami (Unding) and his team of five tree climbing experts.  Prof. Mary Gagen sat down with Unding to hear about the experience of climbing this giant beauty, and this riveting interview has been published in The National Geographic. At SEARRP we are thrilled to have been involved with this exciting collaboration and extend a huge congratulations and thank you to Unding and the team for their hard work!

The planning process for climbing the tree was rigorous & required a high level of skill to ensure a safe and successful expedition.
Photo by Unding Jami
The SEARRP tree climbing team
Photo by Unding Jami