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Gardening in Bangkok

The default seems to be to grow plants in pots, and then line them up in front of your house. (Where I am, "houses" are row houses, as in Montreal or Philly.) Here is a tree in a pot:

As you can see, the house's entryway would give directly on the street; there's no sidewalk, and certainly no earthen margin for planting. So pots are very sensible. (The street is actually a side street, called a soi; Bangkok is organized into sois, which when not specialized commercial districts are rather like Philly neighborhoods, except the public space is built like Beijing's hutongs. (Readers will doubtless correct me on this.)

However, gardens in Bangkok do exist. Walking up Sukhumit soi 38 I turned a corner and encountered this in what seems like a vacant lot (and I can't imagine why some gentrifying real estate developer hasn't seized it):

These gardeners also grow plants in pots:

And tires (just like in Maine):

But they are also using raised beds:

And this looks so much like clover I wonder if they, too, are fixing nitrogen in their soil:

They are also organizing pretty beds with rocks that come to hand, as I would:

And here is a whole bed of flowers:

Very exciting! (There is also a hydroponics business on the same soi, which says something but I am not sure what.)

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Submitted by hipparchia on

the pink flowers, first photo after the fold, look kind of like vincas [useful for fighting cancer among other things], though the leaves don't look quite the same.

your barbed wire photos look like they need rotating.

i love container gardens. when i lived at the beach, growing conditions were even more sub-optimal than where i live now, but i had flowerpots everywhere, overflowing with mostly herbs and flowers, but some baby lettuces too. not much luck even then with vegetables though.

i also love tree swings.

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Submitted by insanelysane on

Pots or raised beds that use "organic" potting soil is essentially soil less as soil is actually crushed rock. Anyone who ever tried to grow a plant in a pot filled with dirt from the ground soon learns that it can not work.

Real "dirt" is so heavy when wet it crushes all the air from the soil structure. The dirt shrinks when dry and forms an adobe like block defying all attempts to change it back to "dirt", hence, large amounts of bulky lightweight material (sawdust, lava rock, rice hulls etc) is added to the "dirt" to allow aeration and lightness, but this robs the "dirt" of many nutrients as the other materials rot.
If you try sandy soils in a pot, same thing happens and there is even less fertility.

So all container gardening is hydroponic.
Regularly adding all the nutrients in a kind of soup of minerals to plants in pots and raised beds and collecting the run off to use again tomorrow..
This allows you to grow plants in something as inert as marbles or gravel.
For a natural hydroponic system, throw an aquarium with edible fish into the process and you have Aquaculture. Run the nutrient filled fish water through a gravel bed planted with chard, mesclum, spinach, spring onions and radishes. Collect the water from the gravel after watering the plants and send it back through the aquarium.
The cycle of life right in your backyard.
Harvest a couple fish and pick a salad for dinner.

Sorry, long winded.

Submitted by lambert on

It's near the garden above, but behind a gate in a private house. They look like they're growing greens.

I'll try to take a look in a pot and feel the soil. Tropical gardening isn't like here. It seems that composting is a lot harder because the leaves and even the flowers tend to be leathery.