In the past, the concept of Sufficiency Economy seemed to be an abstract principle as it was not very clear how much could be called sufficient. After, His Majesty King Bhumibol initiated the New Theory of Agriculture, the philosophy of Sufficiency Economy has been clearer in our mind as new generations are able to embrace and adopt the philosophy in our daily life to have enough to support ourselves. Embracing the philosophy, “Wanaphan Garden” emerges as a farm which adopts the New Theory of Agriculture. Managed by Mr. Preecha Ngokseema (Kake), a former offie worker living in a city who decided to give up his job and come back to his home to follow the the philosophy of Sufficiency Economy, this 14 rai of farmland is located in Nong Ruea Sub-district, Khon Kaen Province. His farm has been transformed into a green community and a model tourist destination. We are going to have a look at the this farm and at how the New Theory of Agriculture works.
After entering the gate, we can feel perfection. We are in the shade of trees having cool air. The view of paddy fields is very easy on the eye, the air is so fresh that we can inhale deeply. After enjoying the atmosphere, we are meeting with Mr.Kake, who is the owner, welcoming us. Taking to him, we learn that he once worked as a trainer in The Chaipattana Foundation initiated by HM King Bhumibol. He later gave up his job and came back to his hometown and stated the farm following the New Theory of Agriculture. The first thing he did was separating his 14 rai of farmland into 4 sections. The first section was for a pond. The next two sections were for paddy fields and for the purpose of integrated farming. The last section was for animal farming and for living. The place we are going to stay overnight is in the last section. While taking to Mr.Kake, we walk through the farm and have him as our guide. He points at several trees and share us bits of information. He begins with…..
A tree bank, a source of income for retirement
Many rows of huge trees can been seen clearly from a distance. Mr.Kake tells us that these trees are not only providing shade, but also give him extra money. Planting and watering these trees are like creating a fixed deposits account for retirement. This is because the trees can absorb the amount of carbon dioxide, and he is able to obtain carbon credit in exchange for extra money from Kasetsart University. These trees also teach him about mutual relationship ecosystem as branches of the trees that fall can be used as firewood. Flowers of the trees can also be used as fertilisers. Wild mushrooms that grow under the huge trees can be sold or be an ingredient for food.
How to cultivate soil to grow vegetables
Those who think that growing vegetables is difficult for them are invited to the farm. By using his soil formula, Mr.Kake is going to show you that it is not difficult at all. The formula involves the process of making soil fertile. The ingredients used include loam, well-rotted manure, food waste, coffee grounds, egg shells, sugar, bioextracts (known as EM). These are mixed together and water is added for a little bit. The mixture is then used with soil to make it fertile. The fertile soil yields good returns. The vegetables are sold or can be consumed, which can save money.
An easy but effective way to keep chickens
Instead of throwing rotten vegetables, you can use them to make bioextracts and feed farm animals such as fish and chickerns. Mr.Kake tells us that the vegetables are better than granule food, especially kale, shiitake, and ivy gourd, all of which contain a high amount of calcium. The result is that chickens will lay a large size of eggs, from which you can earn more without spending money on supplementary food. Mr.Kake also tells us a tip, saying that chickens are like humans in that they like clean space and good atmosphere. This is the reason why he creates an airy chicken farm which sunlight can flood into. The sunlight can kill fungi on chickens’ wings. The food should also be mixed with bioextracts because chicken manure can dry easily and doesn’t give out smell. Doing this can prevent chickens from contracting diseases, and the eggs obtained are fresh and disease free.
Experiencing the simplicities of life in a farm and enjoying your stay in homestay
After learning about organic agriculture, we are going to actually do something, and there are many activities for us to do from dawn to dusk, all of which are worth doing.
Wake up in the morning and visit the garden and the chicken coop
We begin the first activity in early morning, going to the garden to obtain some organic vegetables for cooking and selling in Khon Kaen Green Market. If there is a customer ordering vegetables, we also need to send the vegetables to them. After that, we go to the chicken coop to obtain eggs and feed the chickens. Then, we water scorpion grasses and cosmos. They are not only beautiful but also attract insects and prevent them from harming other crops. By doing this, we reduce the use of insecticides.
Having 3 meals with fresh organic vegetables
There are fresh and clean vegetables and herbs ready for you every meal. You can be certain that they are clean and organic because we have already had a first hand experience in the farm and ever watered them ourselves. The healthy dishes we recommend are rolled salad and papaya salad.
Fun workshops which can turn into your profession
Mr.Kake focuses on using things efficiently. Things that are left can use sold or processed. For example, the herbs obtained can be used to make shampoos and soaps, which are the main source of income for the garden. By looking at the sales of the products sold by Mr.Kake and his wife, Oil, in many fairs, their quality can be assured. Those staying in the homestay can learn how to make them. Mr.Kake is planning to share his knowledge on how to dye fabrics and clothes in order to create a profession for those who come and learn how to do this.
By reading this information, if you find it interesting to experience the simplicities of the local way of life once in a lifetime or want new ideas for your job, this place is ideal for you. If you are those who are not certain about how to live a good quality life, you are invited to visit Mr.Kake, who is able to give advice. You trip to Wanaphan Garden can surely be worthwhile.
Location: 96 Moo7, Ban Kong Sub-district,
Nong Ruea District, Khon Kaen Province, 40240
26 kilometers from Khon Kaen city centre in the direction of Chum Phae Sub-dictrict
Facebook: Wanaphan – The farm with the New Theory of Agriculture
Line id: wanaphan 8