Oops – We got the date wrong. As Sanitsuda points out in a Bangkok Post article today 5th June, the 4th is designated by the UN as World Environment Day. Here in Thailand we also have Thai Environment Day in the official calendar and that is on 4th December followed the next day by Father’s Day which is also the birthday of HM King Bhumipol and it is common to plant trees in his honour. So perhaps it is preferable to take Sanitsuda’s advice and make every day Environment Day.
This year despite the good rains we have met some obstacles to planting for forest regeneration. Most of the more active participants in Gum Hak Doi Suthep are away. Also the situation regarding supply of trees from supply of trees from government nurseries remains under a cloud of corruption. Trees grown at the suggestion of the King and due for planting last rainy season have not been released and thousands suitable for lowland riverine planting remain behind bars of bamboo at the Huai Keow Arboretum tree nursery. Thirdly an unseasonable fire at the end of May on the Army managed land at Huai Teng Tao has swept through a large planting site there.
However on the bright side, the staff of the Consulate General of United States of America have kindly warmed to a suggestion to plant a selection of indigenous trees in the extensive gardens around the premises they rent on the Ping River Esplanade. The plan includes tall growing trees which in time to come should provide shade to folk who come to enjoy the river view.