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Undone in Udon - A journey into the unknown, by the unknowing...

 
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What is the function of the banana pit please?
 
pollinator
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I forgot to give my best impressions and appreciations following your posts.

Your photos give me the drive to stay the last days here on the project in Taiwan after full 20 month of nonstop work
As soon I leave the quarantine 13.11. in Pattaya, nothing can stop me and I will visit some land offers in Isaan (mainly around Udon and Mahrsarakham)

Watching your farm and all the plants growing is really awakening a strong drive in me to lay down the contract next year and leave the rat race behind me.

I can see myself clearly in the morning with a coffee in my hand, making a plan for the day and shedding a tear of delightedness telling myself never to go offshore again, never leaving my wife again, taking her hand and walk over the land, our land.

Offshore jobs pay well but do they really?
Selling one pig, one egg and one fruit grown on my home not to a much better price?  

Don't worry my pension is more than safe and I do not want to post emotional garbage but completed a task like erecting a million dollar wind turbine which I handover to the customer or growing successfully one single tree, the latter seems to me way more fulfilling.

Your posts and pictures are just that what I want to see and leaving no question behind...

Cheers and keep them coming
 
pollinator
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Location: Udon Thani, Thailand
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See Hes wrote:Pity, you know how much people would pay 20 baht to get on your land and search for lucky lottery numbers on the plants...



Those are the wife's numbers!! She has machetes and medieval gardening implements, so no one would dare try to steal them!!
 
Jason Manning
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John C Daley wrote:What is the function of the banana pit please?



They're used to stop water running straight off our land into our neighbours'. the red stuff we have here is a sandstone clay, that doesn't absorb water very well. Underneath that clay is some very nice soil (previously the topsoil before we buried it when I raised the land), so by guiding the run off into these pits, it hopefully soaks into the good layer roughly a meter below the surface. My gutters will eventually drain into them too (once I've put them up).

I use mine more like water storage tanks, but this chap explains the 'correct' way to do it.

 
Jason Manning
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See Hes wrote:I forgot to give my best impressions and appreciations following your posts.

Your photos give me the drive to stay the last days here on the project in Taiwan after full 20 month of nonstop work
As soon I leave the quarantine 13.11. in Pattaya, nothing can stop me and I will visit some land offers in Isaan (mainly around Udon and Mahrsarakham)

Watching your farm and all the plants growing is really awakening a strong drive in me to lay down the contract next year and leave the rat race behind me.

I can see myself clearly in the morning with a coffee in my hand, making a plan for the day and shedding a tear of delightedness telling myself never to go offshore again, never leaving my wife again, taking her hand and walk over the land, our land.

Offshore jobs pay well but do they really?
Selling one pig, one egg and one fruit grown on my home not to a much better price?  

Don't worry my pension is more than safe and I do not want to post emotional garbage but completed a task like erecting a million dollar wind turbine which I handover to the customer or growing successfully one single tree, the latter seems to me way more fulfilling.

Your posts and pictures are just that what I want to see and leaving no question behind...

Cheers and keep them coming



Hi Will - thanks for posting.

I know exactly where you're coming from! I have been here 2.5 years now and I wasn't sure what would be happening with work at the time of my first post. I officially finish work on 24th December (Hurrah!!), as my idiot boss went a step too far and I resigned. I'm still worried he's going to screw me over with wages (he's already tried once), but we shall have to wait and see. I have hopefully managed to save enough money to keep me going until my hardwood trees are ready to harvest in 15 to 20 years, at which time (if I'm still here) I'll probably just remove a year's worth at a time.

The offer of a beer is still open when you're in Udon - I'm sure we'll have loads to talk about.

Cheers, Jase
 
See Hes
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Hi Jason,

I have been through your post more than twice and it really dig your progress.

I would like to know some details:

- The little excavator, how much you pay for a day rent?
- Straw bales, how do they perform by now. Suppressing weeds, how much sq.meter can you cover with one and how good do they decompose I mean in special
- You wrote that you pay about 1$ the bale, is it 30 baht or 20 baht.
   Most land we got offered is around Udon, hence if you order straw again we could make a bulk order together if that would benefit the price, a few years ago we paid 20 baht a bale
   using them on Pattaya Bike week as seating in our tent.
Last: You wrote you will never live there, how far away do you live and how do you avoid that your chicks and ducks not end up on another one's BBQ? Including a free Fruit Salad as
         side dish.

I am in Quaratine now the 4th day and hope Isaan is open for travel after I am done here..
 
Jason Manning
pollinator
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See Hes wrote:Hi Jason,

I have been through your post more than twice and it really dig your progress.

I would like to know some details:

- The little excavator, how much you pay for a day rent?
- Straw bales, how do they perform by now. Suppressing weeds, how much sq.meter can you cover with one and how good do they decompose I mean in special
- You wrote that you pay about 1$ the bale, is it 30 baht or 20 baht.
   Most land we got offered is around Udon, hence if you order straw again we could make a bulk order together if that would benefit the price, a few years ago we paid 20 baht a bale
   using them on Pattaya Bike week as seating in our tent.
Last: You wrote you will never live there, how far away do you live and how do you avoid that your chicks and ducks not end up on another one's BBQ? Including a free Fruit Salad as
         side dish.

I am in Quaratine now the 4th day and hope Isaan is open for travel after I am done here..



Hi Will,

I will try to answer below...

- The little excavator, how much you pay for a day rent? I think it was around 3,000/day with operator. It was more of a 'medium' excavator than a little one.
- Straw bales, how do they perform by now. Suppressing weeds, how much sq.meter can you cover with one and how good do they decompose I mean in special The bales have worked out pretty well. I reckon it'll require around 800 bales per rai, and 2 or 3 years of application to start building a thin soil layer than allows for the microbiome to develop. They break down in 6 to 9 months.
- You wrote that you pay about 1$ the bale, is it 30 baht or 20 baht. I think it was 28 baht a bale, delivered. This was from a local farmer. We saw some adverts on Facebook that were a little more expensive, but I think it's best to buy locally.
   Last: You wrote you will never live there, how far away do you live and how do you avoid that your chicks and ducks not end up on another one's BBQ? Including a free Fruit Salad as side dish. I imagine my thread isn't easy to understand as we have 3 plots on the go. I guess I should really split it into 3 threads, but I'm worried I'll incur the wrath of PW.
Plot #1 is the most active plot is the 1 rai that is our back garden. This is where the birds are, the straw laid and the black house is being built.
Plot #2 is near Na Chum Saeng. It is 22 rai and where we have planted the trees. We will be digging out the pond in the New Year when the water levels are at their lowest.
Plot #3 is in Wang Nam Keow, about 100km south of Korat. This is 7 rai and we have already added a pond. I was there over the weekend and it's getting overrun with weeds, which is good in my book. It'll bind the topsoil and aerate the 'subsoil'. We intend to put a little hut on here for when we visit, but it needs to be VERY cheap (like me!).


Isaan is open. We've just come back from Bangkok & Korat with zero issues.

I hope that clears things up!

Jase
 
Jason Manning
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Flicking through this thread, I can see real progress, especially in the small piece of land that is our back garden.

Over at Na Chum Saeng (the large 8 acre piece), we will be starting discussions with the digger guy. He has to go back and pull out all the eucalyptus roots and we need to discuss a price for enlarging the bottom pond and filling in a couple of small ponds that make the driveway very/too narrow. 6 months ago, I would have said 'just do it', but as I am fast approaching 'retirement' I know how much money I have and throwing a lump of it down a big hole in the ground (literally!) is looking very unappealing, especially as I know that the bottom pond is good enough as it is.

At Wang Nam Keaow (the smaller 3.5 acre plot), things have changed a lot in the year that we have been away. The original foreigner to have land there has been actively getting friends of his to also buy land (like us) and the upshot is that much of it has been sold or is just about to be. The guy is German and is a top bloke, and all but one of the new arrivals is also German. I suggested renaming the area 'Poland'... The pond we had dug earlier in the year is full and draining nicely into our neighbour's pond (which then drain into a creek, then a river) and it has also stopped our and his topsoil being washed away - so that's looking good. We made plans to build there, but that has been put on the back boiler for now until money stabilises.

So, back our to our back garden.

Our sister is back from working in Korea, so has a little money to show from the 5 or so years she and her husband have been there. They have bought a truck and a 10 metre wide strip of land that ran adjacent to their land (and a bit of ours). We then paid them the same amount and rejigged things so we got some of the sister's land and some of the new strip, while sis got most of the new strip. We have both ended up with better shaped pieces of land of around 1000sqm. The new bits are lower than ours, but has 'good' (it's not red sandstone clay, but is pretty dead) soil. We will keep the levels as they are and mulch/compost the hell out of it, primarily from clearing all the 'weeds' that are growing on it currently. My wife has already macheteed most of it to death and I built a stile for her to get over the existing fence and down to the land. We will keep this fenced off so the dogs stay off it.
The blue areas on the map show the new pieces. 'New Zone 1' is the chicken & duck shed and 'New Zone 2' is the 'Rough Area' as shown below.

Some Thai scientists are using a local plant in capsule form to treat Covid patients. Apparently, it has been used for ages to treat colds, but now we have the science, it seems it is a very powerful anti-viral. I thought we should have some, but I now now why it's dried and put into capsules - it tastes f**king horrible!

Our bougainvillea is starting to settle. We originally planted it as a middle finger to our sister who my wife had fallen out with, but now they're best buddies and its now in the middle of our recently expanded land, we might need to remove some of it! Families eh?! We have also started planting an ornamental bed at the front of the plot - hopefully they'll live over the cool/dry season and then thrive when the rains come next Easter time.

Other stuff like bananas and papaya are fruiting like mad, but my pineapple is taking an age to get to the stage where either I or some animals/insects can enjoy it. Hopefully it will join our Christmas table along with one of the ducks we put in the freezer last month.

Talking of ducks, after removing 3 or the 4 drakes, things have settled and we have in the region of 20 chicks. One brood (is that the right word?) are in the photo, but there are more hiding under a piece of roofing, which is where the ladies like to lay their eggs.

Hopefully the photos shed more light on top of my waffle.
New-land-area.jpg
New land area
New land area
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Anti-viral plant
Anti-viral plant
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Bougainvillea
Bougainvillea
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Papaya
Papaya
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Tomatoes & Lettuce
Tomatoes & Lettuce
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Quackers
Quackers
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Bananas
Bananas
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Nearly there...
Nearly there...
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Plumeria
Plumeria
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Rough area
Rough area
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1st decorative bed planted
1st decorative bed planted
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Veggie area
Veggie area
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More papaya
More papaya
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The stile I made
The stile I made
P_20211205_091837.jpg
Coconut tree with fruit
Coconut
 
See Hes
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The medical herb you have posted in the picture is called in Thai "Fah Talai Jone" and has the botanical Name: Andrographis paniculate (The King of Bitters)

That stuff really packs a punch when speaking about ayuvedic allrounder Plants.

Health tip of today: If it tastes good, spit it out!
This little plant really doesn't taste good and even cover it with lemon or sugar won't help.

I personally am a little sceptic when my wife tries to feed me stuff I don't know but I believe that this plant has some real properties because every rural Thai knows and uses it.

...and so they gave him, medicinal compound, and now he's emperor of Rome lalala...  
 
Jason Manning
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See Hes wrote:The medical herb you have posted in the picture is called in Thai "Fah Talai Jone" and has the botanical Name: Andrographis paniculate (The King of Bitters)



That's the stuff!
 
Jason Manning
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A few months ago, I posted on what we had done, and were intending to do with our large plot of land.

A local guy with diggers has already cut down most of the eucalyptus plantation and was waiting until the dry season to pull the roots out and also do a little remodeling to make our driveway a little larger.

We had intended to do more by digging out a proper pond at the bottom of the land (far left), but that would cost more money than I am prepared to spend - with only 9 days left of gainful employment, I need to start being more thoughtful about how the money is spent.

The roots are out now. Some locals will take some of them for firewood and we will burn the rest (which I hate to do, but I don't see that I have a choice).

When the rainy season starts we will repopulate this area with hardwood saplings.

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See Hes
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As Eucalyptus is very common to find in tropical plots it would be very interesting how the influence on the growth of other species is after removal and reforestation in the same spots.
Red sandalwood has been tested by my father in law and we couldn't see a difference within the trees put in virgin ground or in a plant hole where an eucalyptus root has been pulled out.

The Logs of Red Sandal wood 15 years later have made a pretty coin and will be also planted on our farm wherever they don't kill other trees (maybe as a surrounding tree line to keep weeds at bay)

I am still waiting on my retirement visa (32 days now) and extend my driver licenses asap. As soon completed we will drive around and visit some plots.
One is 88 rai (Freehold Chanote) for a bargain in Sawang Daen Din, fingers crossed that google earth is showing the truth.

It has partial rice fields which can be converted into a lake as a pond is already there and its almost in the center of the plot sloped north for an overflow canal,
tapioca fields convertible to market garden fields and greenhouses to give the family a task and income.
and a lot of matured Silvopasture with eucalyptus and nicely spread wild grown mixed hardwood in-between which obviously safes me years to come waiting for a canopy layer.

I am getting really excited and hope the best...  
 
Jason Manning
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See Hes wrote:As Eucalyptus is very common to find in tropical plots it would be very interesting how the influence on the growth of other species is after removal and reforestation in the same spots.
Red sandalwood has been tested by my father in law and we couldn't see a difference within the trees put in virgin ground or in a plant hole where an eucalyptus root has been pulled out.

The Logs of Red Sandal wood 15 years later have made a pretty coin and will be also planted on our farm wherever they don't kill other trees (maybe as a surrounding tree line to keep weeds at bay)

I am still waiting on my retirement visa (32 days now) and extend my driver licenses asap. As soon completed we will drive around and visit some plots.
One is 88 rai (Freehold Chanote) for a bargain in Sawang Daen Din, fingers crossed that google earth is showing the truth.

It has partial rice fields which can be converted into a lake as a pond is already there and its almost in the center of the plot sloped north for an overflow canal,
tapioca fields convertible to market garden fields and greenhouses to give the family a task and income.
and a lot of matured Silvopasture with eucalyptus and nicely spread wild grown mixed hardwood in-between which obviously safes me years to come waiting for a canopy layer.

I am getting really excited and hope the best...  



That sounds amazing! I hope it's as good as you hope it is and that you manage to snag it! We're not very far away from there, so look forward to the invites for drinkies!
 
Jason Manning
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As we now have a little more land, we thought we'd get 2 or 3 little black piggies. We have some guys putting up the fence and will make a small concrete platform that will form half of the floor in their sty. The other half of the sty floor will be dirt.

There are bananas, bamboo and limes growing here, and we'll add some papaya before we get the pigs. I think the area is around 30sqM so plenty big enough with lots of shade.

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Jason,
Congratulations on your detailed postings of your journey.  A lot of what you are doing is highly adaptable to other climates and situations.  Have just found your Undone in Udon and am fascinated, if not a bit envious.  A lot of what you are doing are Badge Bits in the SKIP journey .  If you were to submit them, they will be great examples for other SKIPers.  Doing the SKIP is also a great way of keeping track of your journey.
Again, congratulations, I am learning so much from your posts. Your efforts need PIE.
Cheers
 
Jason Manning
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My wife never stops spending my money...

A house which is next to the entrance to our back garden became available yesterday. Despite the best efforts of a neighbouring aunt to prevent the sale going through, we now have another house and have more firmly secured access to our existing plot. The house needs a bit of work doing, but as it all cost only $6,000, I can't complain.
P_20220121_102144.jpg
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Jason Manning
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Paul Fookes wrote:Jason,
Congratulations on your detailed postings of your journey.  A lot of what you are doing is highly adaptable to other climates and situations.  Have just found your Undone in Udon and am fascinated, if not a bit envious.  A lot of what you are doing are Badge Bits in the SKIP journey .  If you were to submit them, they will be great examples for other SKIPers.  Doing the SKIP is also a great way of keeping track of your journey.
Again, congratulations, I am learning so much from your posts. Your efforts need PIE.
Cheers



Hi Paul,

Thanks for taking the time to respond to my thread. I'm still surprised when someone does and the message isn't something along the lines of "What on Earth are you doing, fool!" 😄

I didn't know about SKIP, so thanks for bringing that to my attention. I have downloaded the eBook and will investigate.
I am aware that parts of it are not applicable to me (as in I can't will land that I don't actually own - my wife owns everything!), but it has reignited the thought I once had (before the world shut down) of maybe having like-minded (or better still, knowledgeable) people come here to learn and share with us.

The two main obstacles are visas for Thailand (realistically visitors would be here for 2 or 3 months at a time maximum) and my aversion to most other people, especially overexcitable people (I'm a miserable Limey/Pom after all).

Food for thought - thanks for the heads-up!
 
Paul Fookes
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Jason Manning wrote: Thanks for taking the time to respond to my thread. I'm still surprised when someone does and the message isn't something along the lines of "What on Earth are you doing, fool!" 😄
I didn't know about SKIP, so thanks for bringing that to my attention. I have downloaded the eBook and will investigate.
I am aware that parts of it are not applicable to me (as in I can't will land that I don't actually own - my wife owns everything!), but it has reignited the thought I once had (before the world shut down) of maybe having like-minded (or better still, knowledgeable) people come here to learn and share with us.
The two main obstacles are visas for Thailand (realistically visitors would be here for 2 or 3 months at a time maximum) and my aversion to most other people, especially overexcitable people (I'm a miserable Limey/Pom after all).
Food for thought - thanks for the heads-up!


My father was a Limey so all over it.  Poms are not miserable, it is the weather that is.  You are measured in your considerations and only like people who enable further consideration.  I am creatively lazy so work towards my redundancy on this earth.  Permies enables this to materialise through better practices. Your Banana Circles has me considering a fig circle.  So thanks for that.

To further enable your journey further into Permies, can I suggest that you go into your profile (the circle in the top right and click on view profile.  There are a number of tools there.  One is the scavenger hunt.  As you complete one hunt, another one comes up.  Each is designed to help you to navigate the Permies website.  I have been a member since 2015 and am still learning skills and how to drive my bit of land better.  I have just completed the garden master course and now understand why things work so for me it will be less hit and miss - creative laziness at its optimum.  Happy to keep in touch.  If you need help with the site just send me a purple moosage.  I note that there is an emerging group up your way.  If you get into the Regional forum https://permies.com/c/3 you can set up a Thailand specific Thread.  With Pie, you also have access to more stuff.  Each pie piece expires after a month - just a warning.  https://permies.com/wiki/pie
Cheers
 
See Hes
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Jason Manning wrote:Bee has been busy planting more stuff (Haas avocado, papaya and some other stuff that my sieve head can't remember) and I have put in a bunch of moringa cuttings (along with another twiggy plant) around the edge of New Zone 2 which will hopefully provide shade, bind the soil on the slope and fix a bit of nitrogen.

Some bits are getting overgrown again, so I'll be getting the strimmer out in a day or two.



I quoted this post even it's 2 years already.

My apologies that I couldn't make it 3 weeks ago but as we planned to visit you and your wife another land offer came in and the price was
- well as the Land Deed - Low and useless

...but we visit every offer in hope that there is a plot waiting for us out there.

I rented just a pickup again for a week and our first stop will be Kranuan near Khon Kaen and I keep you posted where our tour brings us this time.

The reason I quoted this specific post was because one of you pics shows a thick ground cover and it looks to me like clover.
Nitrogen fixer, ground cover, animal fodder and most important Bee Forage too.

If this is clover it gives me peace of mind as I was always guessing: Will clover grow in abundance in the heat of the Isaan area?
Your picture gave me the answer and I owe you a Leo as soon I make it to your place ;-)

Cheers

Will
 
Jason Manning
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See Hes wrote:

Jason Manning wrote:Bee has been busy planting more stuff (Haas avocado, papaya and some other stuff that my sieve head can't remember) and I have put in a bunch of moringa cuttings (along with another twiggy plant) around the edge of New Zone 2 which will hopefully provide shade, bind the soil on the slope and fix a bit of nitrogen.

Some bits are getting overgrown again, so I'll be getting the strimmer out in a day or two.



I quoted this post even it's 2 years already.

My apologies that I couldn't make it 3 weeks ago but as we planned to visit you and your wife another land offer came in and the price was
- well as the Land Deed - Low and useless

...but we visit every offer in hope that there is a plot waiting for us out there.

I rented just a pickup again for a week and our first stop will be Kranuan near Khon Kaen and I keep you posted where our tour brings us this time.

The reason I quoted this specific post was because one of you pics shows a thick ground cover and it looks to me like clover.
Nitrogen fixer, ground cover, animal fodder and most important Bee Forage too.

If this is clover it gives me peace of mind as I was always guessing: Will clover grow in abundance in the heat of the Isaan area?
Your picture gave me the answer and I owe you a Leo as soon I make it to your place ;-)

Cheers

Will



Hi Will,

No worries - you need to follow any lead you get.

That clover isn't the same stuff as I remember growing in England, but as long as it does the job and grows quickly, then it should work for you.

I'm off down south for a month touring with a friend, so won't be around for a while. My wife knows of 30 rai of mixed farmland near us for around 150k per rai. If you want some photos, I can get some for you.

Cheers,

Jase
 
Jason Manning
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Feb 2022 Update!

Not a great deal has happened over the last month. I've been on a 3 week motorcycle trip down to the south of Thailand, so the wife has just done a bit here and there. We've continued to put up fences around certain areas (mainly to keep dogs off the crops and a nasty aunt off our land) and do a bit here and there, but the main thing of note is that I have finished the pig sty and I'm very happy with it. We need to finish the fence around the piggy area and let some of the papaya & banana get established, then we can go get some pigs.

The wife has also been laying a brick pathway at the front of our house in an effort to reduce the tick impact. They like to move on-mass from the wet grass during the rainy season to the dry area under the roof overhang. The path is wide enough to make sure there is so grass/dirt area that will stay dry when it rain, so I am hoping this will mean the ticks will go somewhere else. We did think about covering the entire (its a small lawn) lawn with bricks, but this 2m wide strip has taken so long, we're having second thoughts. The Jack Russells are busy 'digging up/preparing for seed' the rest of the lawn, so I think we'll try reseeding it when the rains come in a couple of months.

P_20220224_093410.jpg
Ducks are starting to look yummy!
Ducks are starting to look yummy!
P_20220224_083004.jpg
The Missus hard at work. I tried to help, but...
The Missus hard at work. I tried to help, but...
P_20220226_133631.jpg
Front entrance
Front entrance
P_20220226_133639.jpg
Interior decor
Interior decor
P_20220226_133911.jpg
Rear feature window
Rear feature window
 
See Hes
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Hi Jason,

I remember the phrase I was reading here in this Forum.
"You have no Bug problem, you have a Predator problem."


Tics we had as we were running a place in Pattaya.
Never seen such fast running critters and their amount they come up with.

There are many options from growing many Herbs including Mint, Lavender, Thyme and Pennyroyal.

All of them Plants in our Garden thinned the Tic population visibly.

The only ones that didn't fail were 4 Guinea Fowls.
They made Tics within a month a rare event.

BUT, after the job was done everybody (Including our Neighbors) had enough...

...did you know Guinea Fowl sprinkled with Salt, Pepper and Paprika for 60 min in the oven... (Off topic sorry)  
 
Jason Manning
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Got a better piccy of the Sunday lunches.

received_692268735111702.jpeg
7 months' worth of Sunday lunches
7 months' worth of Sunday lunches
 
Jason Manning
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See Hes wrote:Hi Jason,

I remember the phrase I was reading here in this Forum.
"You have no Bug problem, you have a Predator problem."


Tics we had as we were running a place in Pattaya.
Never seen such fast running critters and their amount they come up with.

There are many options from growing many Herbs including Mint, Lavender, Thyme and Pennyroyal.

All of them Plants in our Garden thinned the Tic population visibly.

The only ones that didn't fail were 4 Guinea Fowls.
They made Tics within a month a rare event.

BUT, after the job was done everybody (Including our Neighbors) had enough...

...did you know Guinea Fowl sprinkled with Salt, Pepper and Paprika for 60 min in the oven... (Off topic sorry)  



Hi Will. Yes, a possible solution, but we may then have a mint-overtaking-the-garden problem...!

Guinea Fowl woudn't last 2 minutes - we have 2 Jack Russels.

We will overcome!
 
Jason Manning
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"Is that chicken for us to play with?"
P_20220330_144345.jpg
Toy chicken
Toy chicken
 
Jason Manning
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If you ever wondered how not to do coppicing, wonder no more!

We have a 400m or so 'hedge' made from eucalyptus running down the access road at our Na Chum Saeng plot. As most people know, euc grows like a rampant weed, so I thought it would make a good coppice hedge type thing. I did an internet search and saw that virtually nobody else thought this was a good idea, so we set off to make horticultural history with a saw, a wicked machete and some baling wire. I remember watching some guys wearing flat caps doing this on the telly about 40 years ago, and it looked simple enough. Just cut the trunks low down and bend them over in one direction, weaving them around other stuff if possible. This generally worked pretty well, but there we a few bald spots, so I had to bend some of them over in the other direction to fill the bald spots. We also tried to add uprights at least every 2m to replace the already rotting cust posts that were put in a couple of years ago.

It looks a bit of a mess now, but we'll give it 6 months (when it'll probably look even more of a mess).
P_20220406_151825.jpg
Coppicing #1
Coppicing #1
P_20220406_151724.jpg
Coppicing #2
Coppicing #2
P_20220406_151634.jpg
Coppicing #3
Coppicing #3
 
Jason Manning
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We're also trying to find someone with a tractor to push the old euc roots into the big ditches. It'll only be a day's work, but the first quote we got was crazy - the guy reckoned it would take 4 days! We're still looking...
P_20220406_151815.jpg
[Thumbnail for P_20220406_151815.jpg]
 
See Hes
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Jason Manning wrote:We're also trying to find someone with a tractor to push the old euc roots into the big ditches. It'll only be a day's work, but the first quote we got was crazy - the guy reckoned it would take 4 days! We're still looking...



ONE day???

One of our British lads here on the construction site tried to make a classic joke with me.
(Yes I am back in Taiwan, the Land deed needs about 3 month so my wife sorts that and I gather another coin for a tractor without kicking into our pension box)

ok back to the joke:

He asked me:
how many Germans you need to change a light bulb?

While passing by I responded:
One, we Germans are efficient and we have no sense of humor.

Guess on who was the laughs that came from all others in the smoko corner?

Hence regarding your task: If I look on the picture I would say with a good Kubota the job should be done in 5 hrs.... (no joke)

I'll be back in October and hope that I can then start to fence the whole land while See (my wife) and Muay (She is living with us since years) planting all our trees.
My motivation to do another season offshore is quite low, and it isn't getting better looking at your posts, but the day rate is too good to leave it.

Keep us updated with your posts, I really enjoy following this thread......

Cheers

Will
 
Jason Manning
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See Hes wrote:

Jason Manning wrote:We're also trying to find someone with a tractor to push the old euc roots into the big ditches. It'll only be a day's work, but the first quote we got was crazy - the guy reckoned it would take 4 days! We're still looking...



ONE day???

One of our British lads here on the construction site tried to make a classic joke with me.
(Yes I am back in Taiwan, the Land deed needs about 3 month so my wife sorts that and I gather another coin for a tractor without kicking into our pension box)

ok back to the joke:

He asked me:
how many Germans you need to change a light bulb?

While passing by I responded:
One, we Germans are efficient and we have no sense of humor.

Guess on who was the laughs that came from all others in the smoko corner?

Hence regarding your task: If I look on the picture I would say with a good Kubota the job should be done in 5 hrs.... (no joke)

I'll be back in October and hope that I can then start to fence the whole land while See (my wife) and Muay (She is living with us since years) planting all our trees.
My motivation to do another season offshore is quite low, and it isn't getting better looking at your posts, but the day rate is too good to leave it.

Keep us updated with your posts, I really enjoy following this thread......

Cheers

Will



Hey Will!

Sorry you're back on the daily grind. I had a similar struggle regarding having a very good income versus being happy. I still have an open offer to basically open a new office doing what I did before, but at this point in time, I'm not missing the corporate world one bit. The missus would still like me to work (even at half of what I was earning before is still a lot), but you've seen my pioneering work in coppicing! Look what I am able to bring to the world once the shackles are off!!!

Hang in there, but don't leave it too long, in case you leave it too late...
 
See Hes
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I wouldn't have returned if the Land deed would have been in my hand,
but the owner of the land is 78 and he had no clue that he not just sell the land when it is still on his wife's name, who passed away last year.

They told us we could start already but I will not do anything before its not ours.

3 month is already fast because the son has a loan on a tractor that the father signed and now the bank is on them.
So all family members who are the beneficial are doing it together.

Hunting Land for 5 month and waiting another 3 just made me just fuzzy and I didn't know how to spend the time.
My wife's trees are sacred and I am not allowed to touch them because she raised all from seeds.
Her babies...  

the difference is sitting three month behind the computer or sitting three month behind the computer and increase the 5 years backup money makes an easy math.

If the deed is in my wife's hand I might just jump on the next plane instead of staying till October...
 
Jason Manning
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Blimey! It's getting a bit warm over here (nearly 40°C). I was out burning a couple of small lime trees that had died (controlled burn in a barrell) and got a nice shot of heatstroke! I'm not going to get much done this year if I can only manage an hour a day doing stuff. And yes, I was wearing a big hat!
 
See Hes
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As I came in 2002 to Thailand there was never in my mind to work physically here at such temperatures.

But different to the common way people getting married Father and Granny demanded that I moved into the house of the old man.
It turned out that I ended up enjoying the Family life and as grafter I did my first steps in Thai style farming.

One day I bought father some trees and planted them in the late morning hrs (With a huge straw hat on)
The afternoon I spent in father's lazy chair suffering same as you a heat stroke and some poisoning from some very small black ants.

After this experience I never played the tough roustabout I used to be in the offshore bizz and did what all others did:

03:00am, getting up (with support of father's rooster), sitting on the porch with a fag and a coffee,
04:00am we are going into the sugar field chopping canes
and at 10:00am finding a comfortable spot under some tree or returning back on the porch in the hammock.  
I will not move an inch beside having a grub until 05:00pm and do some final stuff, having a Leo or two, ending with the darkness when the chicken tell you its sleeping time again.

 
Jason Manning
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See Hes wrote:As I came in 2002 to Thailand there was never in my mind to work physically here at such temperatures.

But different to the common way people getting married Father and Granny demanded that I moved into the house of the old man.
It turned out that I ended up enjoying the Family life and as grafter I did my first steps in Thai style farming.

One day I bought father some trees and planted them in the late morning hrs (With a huge straw hat on)
The afternoon I spent in father's lazy chair suffering same as you a heat stroke and some poisoning from some very small black ants.

After this experience I never played the tough roustabout I used to be in the offshore bizz and did what all others did:

03:00am, getting up (with support of father's rooster), sitting on the porch with a fag and a coffee,
04:00am we are going into the sugar field chopping canes
and at 10:00am finding a comfortable spot under some tree or returning back on the porch in the hammock.  
I will not move an inch beside having a grub until 05:00pm and do some final stuff, having a Leo or two, ending with the darkness when the chicken tell you its sleeping time again.



I keep telling myself that I need to get up early, but I'm either a mad dog or an Englishman...
 
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We have just got back from a week away at our land in Wang Nam Khiao. We had 1,000 hardwood trees delivered by the Post Office (600 teak, 100 mahogany, 100 something else, 100 another one, and 100 of that one). We added rows of teak around the perimeter, planting at 3m spacings on the diagonal and then filled in the centre of the land with the others at roughly 5 or 6m spacing. We managed to fit around 700 trees in - all the teak and a few of the others.

The rest of the trees we brought back to Udon and we will plant them at our Na Chum Saeng plot (is everyone keeping up?).

I have done a rough & ready map for y'all.

Pink = Home (0.8 acres)
Blue = Na Chum Saeng (8.5 acres) - 40 minutes from Home
Green = Wang Nam Khiao (2.75 acres) - 6 hours from Home

We have a small issue at Na Chum Saeng with all the Euc roots that are scattered about. We tried to get someone to push them into a couple of ditches we have, but they were talking the piss with their pricing. So now, the missus wants to leave them where they are. I guess they'll break down eventually... If that is a really stupid thing to do, please let me know in the next day or two before I plant a load of saplings around them - thanks!
Isaan-in-Thailand.jpg
Isaan in Thailand
Isaan in Thailand
Isaan.png
Our plots in Isaan
Our plots in Isaan
P_20220406_151815.jpg
Euc roots everywhere!
Euc roots everywhere!
P_20220420_172659.jpg
Baby teak at WNK
Baby teak at WNK
P_20220420_093346.jpg
Left at WNK
Left at WNK
P_20220420_093343.jpg
Middle at WNK
Middle at WNK
P_20220420_093338.jpg
Right at WNK
Right at WNK
 
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Location: Japan, zone 9a/b, annual rainfall 2550mm, avg temp 1.5-32 C
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See Hes wrote:As I came in 2002 to Thailand there was never in my mind to work physically here at such temperatures.

But different to the common way people getting married Father and Granny demanded that I moved into the house of the old man.
It turned out that I ended up enjoying the Family life and as grafter I did my first steps in Thai style farming.

One day I bought father some trees and planted them in the late morning hrs (With a huge straw hat on)
The afternoon I spent in father's lazy chair suffering same as you a heat stroke and some poisoning from some very small black ants.

After this experience I never played the tough roustabout I used to be in the offshore bizz and did what all others did:

03:00am, getting up (with support of father's rooster), sitting on the porch with a fag and a coffee,
04:00am we are going into the sugar field chopping canes
and at 10:00am finding a comfortable spot under some tree or returning back on the porch in the hammock.  
I will not move an inch beside having a grub until 05:00pm and do some final stuff, having a Leo or two, ending with the darkness when the chicken tell you its sleeping time again.



I think it's amusing you can kind of judge the heat by the time the locals are up and farming... Here it starts from 4 or 5 am in the Summer. I can't imagine living in zone 11 or 12, it took me six years to adjust to zone 9.

I also got attacked by poisonous ants. Had my fingers swell up to the size of bratwursts. Now I follow the locals in gardening apparel too... full sleeves and netted hat. Get too hot, then take a break.
 
Jason Manning
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L. Johnson wrote:

See Hes wrote:As I came in 2002 to Thailand there was never in my mind to work physically here at such temperatures.

But different to the common way people getting married Father and Granny demanded that I moved into the house of the old man.
It turned out that I ended up enjoying the Family life and as grafter I did my first steps in Thai style farming.

One day I bought father some trees and planted them in the late morning hrs (With a huge straw hat on)
The afternoon I spent in father's lazy chair suffering same as you a heat stroke and some poisoning from some very small black ants.

After this experience I never played the tough roustabout I used to be in the offshore bizz and did what all others did:

03:00am, getting up (with support of father's rooster), sitting on the porch with a fag and a coffee,
04:00am we are going into the sugar field chopping canes
and at 10:00am finding a comfortable spot under some tree or returning back on the porch in the hammock.  
I will not move an inch beside having a grub until 05:00pm and do some final stuff, having a Leo or two, ending with the darkness when the chicken tell you its sleeping time again.



I think it's amusing you can kind of judge the heat by the time the locals are up and farming... Here it starts from 4 or 5 am in the Summer. I can't imagine living in zone 11 or 12, it took me six years to adjust to zone 9.

I also got attacked by poisonous ants. Had my fingers swell up to the size of bratwursts. Now I follow the locals in gardening apparel too... full sleeves and netted hat. Get too hot, then take a break.



The thing is, I've been here 20 years now, and while I haven't got used to the heat, I have got used to being hot & sweaty. And like anyone else, when you get into something, you focus on that and forget about everything else, such as your head boiling and not being able to go pee-pee any more. Luckily, my wife (who quite happily works all day) will tell me to take a break fairly often. It's when I'm left on my own, things go to pot.

On a more positive note, we have a couple of porkers moving in with us tomorrow, so there will be lots of swearing and some more photos.
 
Jason Manning
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We have pigs. They're still settling in, so we're leaving them to their own devices until they're comfortable in their new surroundings. We also found someone's mini dinosaur ('gai baan' or scrawny chickens) in our chicken shed, so we clipped a wing and put it in with the piglets. Not sure how long until it manages to escape as I am still trying to work out how it managed to get in our chicken pen.

Anyhoo, here are some bad photos. Enjoy...
P_20220430_162416.jpg
Pigs
Pigs
P_20220430_171807.jpg
Pig
Pig
 
Jason Manning
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The chicken escaped last night - whereabouts unknown!
 
Jason Manning
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The piglets are becoming comfortable around Bee. They still wonder "Who's that big lump?" when I wander about, but so do all the animals, wild or otherwise...
1652096368096.jpg
Piglets
Piglets
1652096361530.jpg
Piglets again
Piglets again
 
Jason Manning
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We (wife was labour, I was supervising) started digging raised beds today to plant a mix of corn, squashes, watermelon, chilli & tomatoes.

There was quite a bit of plastic and composite roof tile in the ground, so that was removed. The plastic sheeting we laid a few months ago had done a good job of knocking back the weeds so we want to get these beds seeded before they get overgrown.
P_20220528_144639.jpg
Diggin'
Diggin'
P_20220528_155918.jpg
Nearly done
Nearly done
P_20220528_151047.jpg
Plastic & 'tile'
Plastic & 'tile'
 
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