Is urban farming sustainable in Bangkok?

An apartment building with a small flower and ...
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I’ve been growing my vegetable garden for six-months now and I’ve got Asian greens and cucumbers to show for it. Now that it’s the rainy season, the plants are really taking off. But, having seen urban farming being practiced in the US, I really am wondering if the urban farming movement can take root in Bangkok?

Traditionally, Thais have been a culture which maintained kitchen gardens and often raised small animals like ducks and chickens. However, things have changed as large numbers of Thais now live in Bangkok and its suburbs. With more people living in crowded dwellings like condos and apartments without any land for gardening, many of the traditional ways have been forgotten. I’m sure the retired grandmothers and grandfathers who live in the city have the knowledge and time to grow a vegetable garden, but what about the younger generation? Moreover, the rapid lifestyle of the average worker means that few have time to spend gardening, even if they have the time to do so. Many young Bangkokians spend their days pushing computer keyboards and nights working late before heading grabbing a bit to eat at the nearest food court or street vendor. They rarely have time for a home cooked meal, let alone grow their own vegetables.

While I am keen on urban farming in general and think that now is the time for people everywhere to embrace the concept. I truly wonder if the average Bangkokian teenager, twenty- or thirty-something would want to be part of the urban farming movement. Most Bangkokians are a bit on the lazy side, try to keep out of the sun and are not looking to get their hands dirty. Bangkokians are notorious for rushing to the malls and movie theaters on weekends to enjoy the shopping and air conditioning. Doesn’t exactly sound like the types who would have fun pulling weeds and turning compost.

So, again I ponder the question : Is urban farming sustainable in Bangkok?

Baan Hom Thian @ Suan Pheng

Ratchaburi is a province that provides a nice easy weekend drive from Bangkok. A major attraction in the area is Baan Home Thian (the ‘House of Scented Candles’) which is located near the kilometer 33 marker on highway No. 3087.

Baan Home Thian is a quaint photographic destination. The decorations are very retro with old items, toys, furniture and vehicles on display among the shops and gardens. The main merchandise for sale here is a large range of colorful scented candles, available in various designs and sizes. The owner makes this uniquely designed candle for local and international markets. The prices range from small (25 baht), medium (50 baht), large (120 baht) and X-large (160 baht). Don’t miss the opportunity to make your own candles at the candle making workshop.

Photobucket baan hom thian 2

Directions:  You can drive only 2 hours by using Highway 4 (Phetkasem Road), which will take you through Nakhon Pathom province on to Ratchaburi province. When you reach Ratchaburi’s Muang district, you’ll see a sign directing you to turn right for the local road (No 3087).