Bangkok | Turning taxis into botanical gardens for fewer customers

(Bangkok) Vegetable gardens and small ponds welcome frogs: Abandoned taxi roofs and hoods have found new life in Bangkok.

In an outdoor parking lot in the west of the Thai capital, monsoon-watered green shoots emerge from the structure of several rows of pink and orange taxis typical of Bangkok.

Little green and brown frogs rummage in the tropical temperatures inside makeshift pools made of old tires, nestled among about 200 abandoned cars.

Taxis from this “cemetery” have seen their drivers return to their village in recent months, after the almost complete disappearance of customers due to the epidemic and containment of the disease.

Growing vegetables was our “last option,” according to Thapakorn Asauraltikon, one of the heads of the debt-laden taxi company.

We thought we’d grow vegetables and raise frogs on the rooftops of these taxis.

Thailand has imposed strict restrictions to deal with the wave of COVID-19 pollution in recent months, including a nighttime curfew.

Tourists, who are essential to Bangkok’s taxi business, have disappeared due to the strict rules imposed on entering the kingdom.

Eggplant, peppers, cucumbers, zucchini and basil grown on cars – along with frogs – will help feed unemployed drivers and employees.

And if the crops are good, they plan to sell the surplus in local markets.

“Growing vegetables also helps employees to distract themselves from things. We want them to eat something and we also don’t want them to be stressed,” Thapakorn told AFP.

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