nature, thailand

Gardens of Ranong: A Photographic Exploration

A green-fingered friend asked me last week whether people in Ranong have gardens. With eight months of rain a year, Ranong has fortuitous growing conditions, but many people don’t have a typical garden like I grew up with in New Zealand. There we had grass, trees, shrubs and vegetables, all with room to run around. Here, most people live in blocks of flats which face directly onto the street side, with little potential garden space. Houses are surrounded by concrete, tarmac or muddy roads.

However, people have still managed to create an array of ‘gardens’, effectively exploiting their minimal space to add greenery and colour to the streets. I decided to try and photograph some of these ‘gardens’ to demonstrate the ways people actively try to incorporate nature into urban living.

20180922_1146348357085406509162850.jpg
Aerial view from my apartment looking down to my downstairs neighbours balcony garden featuring chillies, tomatoes and various herbs
20180922_113258746026324980423464.jpg
Green against blue. Potted plants line the block of flats across the road
20180922_1133405248048907779611460.jpg
The blue block of flats across the road has greenery bounded by drying fish and clothes
20180922_1747196133906006799305995.jpg
Adjacent to piles of rubbish, this shop has created a welcoming leafy entrance
20180922_1705398550663748308699662.jpg
A comfortable coffee corner surrounded by a wall of hanging greens and reds, fronted by a diversity of tropical plants at the nearby Iconic Hotel
20180922_2139508824803088740514284.jpg
Shrines such as this are commonplace in front of homes in this predominately Buddhist country. I cycle past this one every day en route to school and always admire how beautifully presented the shrine and garden are.

20180922_1704119130173081821940699.jpg

20180922_1704341152103320554418070.jpg
At the end of our quiet street is this marvelous assortment of flowers, herbs, cacti and others. It is lovingly attended to daily by the woman who lives in the house opposite.
20180922_1704587158810440166350130.jpg
Garden beds are not a hugely common scene in Ranong, but this one has been freshly planted.
20180922_1722073809160627891302721.jpg
This riverside shack features a glorious garden complete with hanging plants with pots fashioned from plastic bottles.
20180922_2104583234909305976012497.jpg
Not strictly a garden, these huge pots have been placed on the riverside. These pink flowers are delightful, but haven’t been able to ascertain their name.
20180921_155647764638823108029487.jpg
Green against green. Down the road from school, small concrete spaces have been utilised well for small collections of plants
20180922_1724171649388773367760308.jpg

The grey dimming sky created a moody atmosphere when photographing this house. Black moldy concrete clad buildings are typical in Ranong, but the trees and shrubs bounding this one compliment this house’s blackened skin.
20180922_1733392224448963963801407.jpg
Even properties with a bit more space prefer potted plants
20180923_0809024248773333199031145.jpg

Finally, my ‘garden’ – making use of a pair of moldy gumboots, I’ve started my own porch garden. It’s great having some greenery around!

 

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s