The gentle white flowers of vanilla appear on many posters, as it is one of the most well-known and favourite spices of the world. But not so many know how hard it is to really cultivate beans from the vanilla plant.
There are several farms in the Sabah region of Borneo that have vanilla plantations, and the best time to visit them is in April or May when vanilla flowers are blooming.
At this time the vines receive gentle pale white strokes and the aroma becomes irresistible. But what is even more interesting is to watch the manual pollination of flowers. There are no insects in Sabah that can help with this intensive process, so only humans can help the transformation process. Moreover, flowers bloom one by one and only in the early morning from 4 am to 9 am, so they should be checked daily.