The three-day 3rd National Kesor Kol Forum in Phnom Penh wrapped up on April 9, having showcased a selection of wild Kesor Kol (a type of orchid), books, vegetables of Cambodia, an art performance, fashion shows and daily concerts at an exhibition.

The thousands of civil servants, students, conservationists, photographers, artists and curious members of the public who attended the forum reported having gained a clearer understanding of the Kingdom’s precious biodiversity.

Chan Somaly, undersecretary of state of the Ministry of Environment, said the event was held to promote public participation and understanding of the importance and value of Kesor Kol and encourage people to play a part in protecting and conserving these unique natural resources.

She added that the ministry held the accompanying exhibition in collaboration with development partners and the private sector.

The first two editions of the forum were held in 2020 and 2022, drawing in large crowds.

“The Cambodian exhibition showcased several types of plants, including wild and domestically bred Kesor Kol, decorative plants, garden plants, agricultural produce and forestry products, along with photos and drawings relating to nature, biodiversity and these beautiful flowers,” said the ministry.

Since 2020, the environment ministry has sent 50 specimens of different varieties of Kesor Kol to Paris’ National Museum of Natural History for international identification and registration, according to an expert from the ministry’s Department of Biodiversity.

Chanthy Someta, director of the department’s Biosafety Office, told The Post on April 10 that the department had not yet received the results if the museum’s assessments.

“All of the samples will be identified by experts and registered internally,” he said.

He added that since 2019, the ministry’s Kesor Kol Sok An Phnom Kulen Research and Conservation Centre has identified 210 distinct varieties of Kesor Kol, from 5,000 specimens.