Nigel Sellman has a large balcony, just over 20 square metres, and would like to make it green. "I would prefer foliage plants, but with some flowering ones mixed in, especially if they attract bees, butterflies or birds," he wrote. "I would like a small tree or large shrub at either end of the balcony, maybe a citrus tree. I'd prefer native species, but I'm not going to be restricted to them.
"I'd also prefer plants that are easier to keep, maybe allowing me to leave them for up to a month, though there is a gardener in the condominium where I live and I could allow him to water them if I'm away. I have no raised ledge for smaller plants. I have heard that most native species, which I'd expect to be easier to keep, need quite deep pots. I don't know if that's true."
With Mr Sellman's letter in mind, I went to the Chatuchak plant market last Wednesday to take a look at the latest plant scene. You may wonder why I always go to Chatuchak when there are many other places where one can buy plants and gardening supplies, such as Thewes market, Talingchan, Klong 15 in Rangsit, the permanent plant market across from Chatuchak on Kamphaengphet Road, and, further afield, the nursery outside Nongnooch Gardens in Pattaya and the countless roadside stalls along Mitraphab Road in Pak Chong and Rangsit-Nakhon Nayok Road in Pathum Thani, to name just a few. Plants in these places, which are open daily, are amazingly cheap and varied, so you can be sure that a visit to any of them will yield interesting results.
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