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A garden tour in spite of curfew

May 23, 2010

Yesterday we had a customer! In spite of our 98% decline in tourists due to the riots in Bangkok, a lady from Florida took our garden tour. In fact, the garden tour was paid by her Australian friend, who paid the double price, as we need two people minimum to be able to run the tour. Apparently he liked the tour when he took it in October.

Anyhow, the tour began at the Hang Dong market, which was unusually rich in uncommon species (see picture below). We went to Dokmai Garden where we among other things admired the Uvarias in blossom. I can not understand why they are not more commonly cultivated – they are gorgeous! After lunch we went to Mae Khanin Tai in the Opkhan National Park, where the huge black ebony by the temple is in blossom. It is a male Diospyros malabarica, which has a nice fragrance in the evening. The village head said it is older than his father, and he is 74. I believe it is much older. We also saw the peculiar Radermachera ignea in blossom in the jungle. Even the old Mesua ferrea by the temple was still producing flowers. The village head remarked it has been exceptionally dry. At Dokmai Garden we have had less than 25 mm rain since mid October. Peace and water, that is what Chiang Mai needs!

Ketsanee Seehamongkol

Karen from Florida poses at a table with edible but bitter Dolichandrone serrulata flowers (Bignoniaceae).

Hang Dong market, Chiang Mai, Thailand.

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