The world's largest flower, the Rafflesia , grows in the forests

Home to the oldest rainforests on the planet, some 130 million years of age, Malaysia is a genetic treasure trove of over 14,500 species of flowering plants and trees. About 75 per cent of the land is covered by natural vegetation which changes with elevation both in species and height, with the tallest trees towering 45 metres above the forest canopy.

Its tropical rainforests exhibit species richness not only at the community level but also at the family and genus levels. In Peninsular Malaysia, the flowering plant flora exceeds 8,500 species, while in Sabah and Sarawak there are more than 12,000 species. One of the most celebrated is the Rafflesia, the world’s largest flower measuring up to one metre across.