Welcome to the Hydroponic Food Forest!
They say (whoever ‘they’ are) bad luck comes in threes.
This year we have had a prolonged monsoon here in southern Thailand where it’s rained heavily most days and nights without much of a break for months.
However last night things got turned up a notch or two…
The ground is so saturated it can’t soak up any more water and the storm that hit us and left our food forest looking more like the Everglades or a Florida swamp.
Even though we built in water capture features and excess runways into the landscape to manage water, so much water dropped from the heavens in such a short space of time, it had nowhere left to go.
In some places the depth of the sitting water exceeds the height of my boots.
My biggest worry now is when more rain comes, as it will, we’re not out of the rainy season yet, the depths will rise. If this happens our papaya and banana trees will be the first to drown, they don’t like standing in water, followed by assorted fruit trees.
Three years of work literately down the drain. We hope for the best but fear the worst. It’s getting hard to stay positive and September will go down as the month that officially sucked!
When we built our house, we did have the for sight to build it on an elevated spot to avoid any flooding. However other people in the area have succumbed to flooding.
The worst place hit was Koh Chang island. We were living there back in 2014 when the heavy rains from the mountains swept bridges, homes and cars out to sea. Last night was a repeat of that disaster.
The same bridges have been damaged, electricity lines are down, landslides are blocking the roads and washing everything out to the beaches.
It doesn’t matter how bad you think you got it, there’s always someone in a worse place. On the positive side, we don’t rely on our produce to provide an income. Many farmers do and it’s hurting their families and communities.
We are not only seeing this happen in Thailand but also the Mid-west of the USA where prolonged and heavy rains have destroyed the wheat and soybean crops, similar things are happening in the UK and China.
Meanwhile in parts of Australia they have had no rain for more than five years and a bale of hay, if you can find one will set you back over $150A. When you take into account a cow eats a bale of hay a day, ranchers are left with few alternative and will cull their herds or they will face starvation.
Global weather patterns seem to be shifting so I take this as the new normal and we will adapt to it as best we can.
One thing is for sure, food prices are set to rise. I’m not talking about inflation due to the trade and currency wars that are raging but the commodity price increases. Simple supply and demand. All the more reason to grow your own food in a garden or aquaponic system!
As I write this I gaze up and look at the horizon from my office window to see the angry black clouds and the sound of distant thunder evaporating.
I long for blue skies and sunshine.
Hydroponic Food Forest