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Category — Asia

Pearl farming in Hong Kong: enthusiasts restock oyster beds in city waters to revive a 1,000-year-old industry

David Wong (left) and Yan Wa-tat on their oyster raft. Picture: David Wong

Fledgling marine industry seeking to profit from scientific methods and cutting-edge identification technology

By Sarah Lazarus
South China Morning Post
15 Feb 2018

Excerpt:

David Wong Chun-kit carefully pushes his knife into an oyster, between the two sides of its shell. He wiggles the blade back and forth to sever the muscle that holds it closed, and then gently prises the shell open. Inside, nestled within the oyster’s slimy folds, is a pearl – lustrous, perfectly spherical and gleaming creamy white in the morning sun.

Wong estimates the pearl to be 7.5mm in diameter. “It’s commercial grade,” he says. “Good for necklaces, earrings, bracelets and rings.”

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February 22, 2018   Comments Off on Pearl farming in Hong Kong: enthusiasts restock oyster beds in city waters to revive a 1,000-year-old industry

Malaysia: Getting citizens interested in farming

This community activity will increase interest of urban residents to farm through Urban Recreational Farming. This activity helps reduce the daily expenses from the collection of crops and introduces more effective resource management.

Daily Express
Sabah
February 11, 2018

Excerpt:

City Hall is introducing My Farmville to promote urban recreational farming as a community activity.
The project held at Kingfisher is the first attempt by City Hall to involve the community as a whole and is aimed at introducing efficient use of resources through organic compost and to help lessen the cost of living.

State Minister of Community Development and Consumer Affairs Datuk Jainab Ahmad who officiated the project at the City Hall Learning Centre in Kingfisher on Saturday supported the programme as it involved the community.

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February 17, 2018   Comments Off on Malaysia: Getting citizens interested in farming

Singapore: Eight companies clinch 10 plots of land for vegetable farming

A map from the Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority (AVA) shows the first batch of land parcels offered by the AVA through a fixed-price tender method.

“One of the challenges in urban farming has always been land cost, especially in Singapore… It’s very difficult to grow vegetables when land prices are that high,” he said.

Today
Feb 10, 2018

Excerpt:

One of the awardees, Vertivegies, intends to build nine six-storey modular structures, each measuring about 30m by 30m and resembling apartment buildings. Its founder and managing director Veera Sekaran, 55, said that vegetables would be grown on the top five stories, with the lowest storey housing pumps and control systems.

Mr Veera, who also founded an urban and vertical-greenery firm called Greenology, added that the new project would be his first large-scale commercial farming venture. Last year, he farmed vegetables using containers and discovered that each 40-foot container was able to yield about 5,000 heads of lettuce every three to four weeks.

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February 17, 2018   Comments Off on Singapore: Eight companies clinch 10 plots of land for vegetable farming

Resilience with Mixed Agricultural and Urban Land Uses in Tokyo, Japan

In the present case study, UA practices were found to have a profound impact on the self-sufficiency of communities in each grid cell.

By Giles Bruno Sioen, OrcID, Toru Terada, Makiko Sekiyama, and Makoto Yokohari
Sustainability
Vol 10, Issue 2

Abstract:

Urban agriculture can enhance the resilience of neighborhoods by providing fresh food in times of natural disasters; however, there is little empirical evidence to support this. Therefore, this study proposes a methodology to identify patterns of agricultural production in urban areas by quantifying self-sufficiency rates in vegetable weight and key nutrients. A spatial grid cell analysis using a geographic information system (GIS) identifies the current and potential self-sufficiency of each land use pattern in Tokyo.

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February 14, 2018   Comments Off on Resilience with Mixed Agricultural and Urban Land Uses in Tokyo, Japan

Hong Kong: Kitchen gardening know-how in palm of your hand

New mobile phone technologies mean even grow-your-own-food enthusiasts stuck indoors can show off their green-fingered talents

By Peta Tomlinson
South China Morning Post
Feb 5, 2018

Excerpt:

Agriculture is a cultural tradition in Hong Kong, currently enjoying a revival among the many urban farmers who are greening the city’s rooftops to grow their own produce and live more sustainably.

Already on sale, and shipping to Hong Kong, is the Plantui 6 smart garden, a Finnish innovation. Just add water and plant capsules (no soil) and the built-in computer takes care of the rest.

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February 10, 2018   Comments Off on Hong Kong: Kitchen gardening know-how in palm of your hand

Singapore: Tools and tips on growing a garden plot

Passion fruit (above) growing on a handmade trellis and a banana plant in bloom at retiree Emily Fong’s plot in HortPark, which she has been leasing for more than a year. As she visits her plot only once a week, Mrs Fong has invested in a battery-operated irrigation system and set the timer to water her crops for one minute every 12 hours. Photo: Emily Fong

And edible gardens are all the rage: Out of 1,300 community garden groups islandwide last year, 80 per cent grew edibles, said the National Parks Board (NParks).

Raffaella Nathan Charles
Straits Times
Feb 3, 2018

Excerpt:

Mrs Emily Fong, a retiree in her 60s, leases a plot at HortPark.

“The best part isn’t the harvest – it’s meeting new friends and sharing tips with these like-minded folk,” she told The Straits Times.

She grows passion fruit, bananas, watercress, pandan, chilli and an oyster plant. After 11/2 years of owning the plot, Mrs Fong has picked up many tips and tricks.

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February 9, 2018   Comments Off on Singapore: Tools and tips on growing a garden plot

Malaysia: Living In The City, Have You Ever Dreamed Of Growing Your Own Food?

“I highly encourage Malaysians to start jumping on the green bandwagon, talk and meet up with people who have ventured in urban farming and aquaponics,”

Written by Hana Maher
Malaysian Digest
Feb 2, 2018

Excerpt:

Nafisah Ahmad relayed that gardening is more of a way of life rather than a hobby, especially for those who grew up outside the city.

“Urban gardening is not a new trend as those who reside and grew up outside the city have always grown their own vegetables and fruits,” she opined.

“Because I grew up seeing my parents planting their own vegetables and plants, I picked up the habit and followed their footsteps when I moved to Kuala Lumpur in the 1970s.”

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February 9, 2018   Comments Off on Malaysia: Living In The City, Have You Ever Dreamed Of Growing Your Own Food?

New Zealand: Can vegetable gardening help at-risk youth?

Bailey Perryman and Fiona Stewart from urban farm enterprise Cultivate Christchurch. Bailey uses the broad fork to prep for seedlings; Fiona is about to dig out the cow horns used to prepare the biodynamic soil amendment BD500.

Cultivate Christchurch, she explains, provides somewhere young people in need of extra support to be in employment can come and learn about working the land and working with others.

By Mary Lovell-Smith
NZ Gardener
January 30 2018

Excerpt:

It is only Jackson’s third day on the farm and the 23-year-old is bursting with enthusiasm. “It’s amazing, I love it here,” he says. “I’ve worked in cafés and done a carpentry course, but I’ve been out of work for a while due to medical reasons. I was apprehensive before I began, but once I arrived here, I just love the place. You can pick your jobs. You get tired, you have a break.”

He says he has done “a bit of gardening in the past” but doesn’t know a lot about plants. “I want to learn to build planter boxers. On my third day I built a trellis. I want to learn new skills to take on with me.”

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February 3, 2018   Comments Off on New Zealand: Can vegetable gardening help at-risk youth?

Singapore: This traveling farm wants to teach you how to grow your own edible greens

Photo: Urban Farm & Barn/Facebook

The Travelling Farm (TTF) runs gardening workshops and programmes in a specially retrofitted container with the objective of inspiring and promoting interest in gardening to the masses.

By Coconuts Singapore
Jan. 17, 2018

Excerpt:

As urban farming gains traction in cosmopolitan Singapore, people are increasingly interested in growing their own edible gardens. But not all of us are born with a green thumb — and that’s where The Traveling Farm steps in.

A roving initiative by urban farming consultancy Pocket Greens, the pop-up space will rotate between three different locations — Bougainvillea Park (where it sits now), Raffles Place Park, and Dhoby Ghaut Green — for three months each from now till Dec 5, 2020, so you’ve got plenty of time to make your way over.

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January 24, 2018   Comments Off on Singapore: This traveling farm wants to teach you how to grow your own edible greens

Singapore: Registration for communal gardening plots in 5 more parks to open on Feb 10

Existing public gardening plots at HortPark. (Photo: Dawn Ang)

NParks said that to date, 400 plots have been fully subscribed by gardening enthusiasts from November to December 2017 at HortPark, Punggol Park, Clementi Woods Park and Bishan-Ang Mo Kio Park, in addition to the initial 80 pilot plots at HortPark.

Chanel News Asia
Jan 16, 2018

Excerpt:

Those with green fingers will have more opportunities to flex them with communal gardening plots in five more parks – Bedok Town Park, Choa Chu Kang Park, Pasir Ris Park, Sengkang Riverside Park and Yishun Park.

The National Parks Board (NParks) said in a news release on Tuesday (Jan 16) that members of the public will be able to apply from 9am to 3pm on Feb 10 to rent one of 220 gardening plots in these parks.

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January 22, 2018   Comments Off on Singapore: Registration for communal gardening plots in 5 more parks to open on Feb 10

Book: Grow, Cook and Eat – Cultivating Asian Herbs

Rhino Press is proud to announce the publication of Grow, Cook and Eat by award-winning writer and presenter Fay Khoo and culinary consultant/food stylist C.Y. Phang.

Borne by a shared passion to educate readers about the myriad joys and benefits of cultivating edible gardens and cooking with them, the book is a portable but information-packed compendium that instructs even the most novice gardener how to embark on their gardening journey with success. Recognising that many urbanites are time and attention-poor, the authors have structured the book into small digestible snippets of information that are easy to read and understand, and which will help readers not just to establish their herb gardens, but also use the produce they have grown with flair.

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January 18, 2018   Comments Off on Book: Grow, Cook and Eat – Cultivating Asian Herbs

Malaysia: Price Of Vegetables on the Rise, More Urban Farming Taking Place

Councillor Awang Ibrahim said that with a little funding, some 80 residents were encouraged to turn an abandoned plot of land into an edible garden.

By Brian Martin
The Star
Jan 12

Excerpt:

StarMetro recently featured an article on the Community Garden in Section 24 Setia, Shah Alam.

The garden has become the passion of a group of retirees who started it two years ago with help from the Shah Alam City Council. Today, the urban farm in the heart of Selangor’s capital is a lush, self-sustaining project, thanks to the hard work and love they have put in.

In Johor Baru, residents of the Jasa flats are starting to harvest the vegetables they planted less than a year ago. The urban agriculture programme was an idea mooted by Johor Mentri Besar Datuk Mohamed Khaled Nordin. Residents were provided seed money by the state government to start off their urban farms, and all they needed to do was to put in the extra hours to till the soil.

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January 18, 2018   Comments Off on Malaysia: Price Of Vegetables on the Rise, More Urban Farming Taking Place

Manila, Philippines: Editor’s rooftop garden produces beautiful veggies

From 15 potted eggplants, he can harvest 1.5 kilos of fruit in one week, enough for his family’s favorite eggplant omelette.

Edgar Godin, editor of Bisaya Magazine published by the Manila Buletin, is a rooftop gardener. From just a 16-square meter rooftop atop their sari-sari store in Bulacan, he can produce more vegetables than what his family can consume.

By Zac B. Sarian
Manila Bulletin
Jan 10, 2018

Excerpt:

Edgar planted 15 eggplant seedlings and 20 okra. These were more than what he usually planted previously of these two veggies. They were in addition to the camote, kangkong, pechay and two varieties of pepper that were already growing. His intention was to have extra harvest that he could sell in their sari-sari store.

He related that by the last week of September, he started harvesting from the eggplant and okra. Because the rooftop garden was very visible to passers by, many of them inquired if fruits were already available. Edgar estimates that he was able to harvest 1.5 kilos of eggplant and 20 to 30 pieces of okra every week during the whole month of October. And he was able to sell what his family could not consume.

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January 17, 2018   Comments Off on Manila, Philippines: Editor’s rooftop garden produces beautiful veggies

Nepal: Urban rooftop farms as new city culture

According to the data of economic activities at Nepal Rastra bank, cultivable land in Nepal has decreased by 30,334 hectares in the fiscal year 2016/17. Hence, rooftop farming can significantly contribute to decrease the import of agricultural products from other countries.

By Aditya Neupane
My Republica
Jan 3, 2018

Excerpt:

One of the main specialties about rooftop farming is that you can also grow unseasonal vegetables and fruits through the green house effect. Rosy Maharjan, trainer of a project named ‘Phohor Maila Bewasthapan Ko Lagi Pratifal Ma Aadharit’, said, “Small families can easily produce enough vegetables for themselves through rooftop farming if it is done in a scientific way.” The project has been providing training on rooftop farming, waste segregation and composting to the residents of Lalitpur Metropolitan City.

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January 10, 2018   Comments Off on Nepal: Urban rooftop farms as new city culture

Hong Kong: Controversy about community garden proposal and ‘Instagram Pier’

Proposal 1: NGOs/Social enterprises operate both promenade (purple) and community garden (green). Photo: GovHK.

The Protect Kennedy Town group questioned why there has to be a community garden in the first place, and an outsourcing of management.

By Kris Cheng
Hong Kong Freen Press
3 January 2018

Excerpt:

The government has amended plans to close much of “Instagram Pier” in Sai Wan for community garden purposes, reducing the area concerned to under 30 per cent of the pier’s total area. However, local groups have continued to question the need for a community garden.

The location, governed by the Marine Department’s Cargo Handling Section, is popular among residents, pet owners and joggers in the area. It does not currently feature any safety barriers around its perimeter.

The community garden plan was modified after public outrage and protests at the Central and Western District Council last month.

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January 8, 2018   Comments Off on Hong Kong: Controversy about community garden proposal and ‘Instagram Pier’