The second farm we visited right after Monkey Organic Farm that day was Buddha Raksa Nature Farm. I’m sure many of you will find the title of the today’s article puzzling as whose love are we talking about? ☺
Buddha-Raksa Nature Farm was bought by the Husband of Mama Chen, when they first visited the farm 10 over years ago, Mama Chen set eyes on this farm. And on immediate action, Papa Chen bought the farm and have been staying there as frequently as possible and together they created a garden of love and freedom which really touch us both.
We first came into contact when we were doing our research and spoke to the daughter (Mae) of the proud owners of Buddha Raksa Nature Farm. If it wouldn’t for you, we would not be able to visit such a beautiful farm 40 mins away from Chiang Mai City!
Upon arrival, we were greeted with turmeric and mandarin tea that is home-made with love by mama Chen and it sure was delicious and without further ado, we went straight to the interview…
Q: How did your farm name come about?
Oh, it is actually from the flower – Buddha Raksa and it grows in our region. The meaning of Buddha-Raksa is related to the religion of Buddhism which means under the protection of Buddha.
Q: How big is your farm?
Approximately 15 Rai here at our farm. ?
Q: Why are you an Organic Farmer?
We decided to be an organic farmer mainly for health reasons and it is also our interest to do farming.
Q: Are you currently selling the crops that you grow on your farm?
Not at the moment, but my daughter has some plans for the farm. In the past, we met with some issues like no water & electricity supply to the farm. It was a big challenge for us, but ever since 1.5 years ago, we managed to get the supply up from the ground and connect the pipes to our farm and we were quite lucky with the water supply because our farm is located in the mountains. In the past, we used to rely on the weather (laugh)
Q: What do you grow on your farm?
We grow a variety of crops but in small quantity. Like bananas, durian, mangoes, rambutan, pomelo etc. We also have an abundance of turmeric in the house which we pound them into powder form and give to some of our friends. We also have some mulberries when they are in season and we make tea out of it.
Q: What are the difficulties you face as an organic farmer?
In the past, it was the water and electricity supply. As for pest that is present on the farm, we use organic pesticides to help prevent the pest from attacking our plants.
Q: Is it difficult for you to obtain an organic certification for your farm?
We just started contacting the certification bodies and there is are strict guidelines to follow, especially so when you need to purchase certain products. So to us, it is important that we follow the regulations to increase our chance of getting certified.
Q: Would you like to have visitors on your farm to participated and help out?
Yes sure, we would like to have them on our farm and they can set up tents and we can provide the breakfast for them as well. We are currently planning something out.
Q: Would you like to be mentored by an experienced organic farmer in the future?
Yes, that would greatly help us in our application for Organic Certificate as well as how we manage our daily lives here at the farm.
When we finished our interview, Papa and Mama Chen gave a mini tour around the farm and shared with us more about their entire experience on this farm. For every farm we visit, there is always a takeaway thought or reflection, and this is our two key learning points from Buddha-Raksa Nature Farm.
#1 If you do not know how to do it, hands-on!
Always experiment, at Buddha Raksa Farm, they grow plenty of fruits in the farm and it made us wonder where did all the knowledge of planting come from? Not everything has to be taught by the book or on the internet. If you have a small plot of land, try growing and experiment new crops all the time. With experience, you can safely say that you are a farmer! (And an experienced one)
When we were there, we felt so much love from the couple and we are quite sure that the plants here do not receive any less. With love, we can pretty much overcome anything even when bad weather comes. ?
And also, catch our snippets of the farm and interview here:
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Thank you once again and signing off,
Iris & Sze Yee