His Majesty the King presided over the royal Ploughing Ceremony at Bangkok’s Sanam Luang on Thursday morning, which produced a prediction that there will be enough water for farming while rice, food, and fruits will be abundant this year.
During this annual ceremony to mark the beginning of the rainy season, which is also Thailand’s rice-planting season, the sacred oxen were offered grass, rice grain, corn, green beans, sesame, liquor and water.
The sacred oxen this year drank water and ate grass and rice, indicating that farm produces – rice, food, and fruits – would be abundant and water would be moderately sufficient.
The prediction was also confirmed by the choice of cloth by permanent secretary to the Ministry of Agriculture, Anan Suwannarat, who served as the Ploughing Lord or Phraya Raekna.
Offered three cloths of the same pattern that were folded to hide their length of four, five and six kueb (a Thai traditional unit based on palm span for linear measure), the Ploughing Lord this year chose a five-kueb-long cloth. That length predicts that water levels would be moderately sufficient and rice crops would be bountiful as well as food, and fruits.
After the ceremony ended, crowds scrambled for the seeds that were sown by the Ploughing Lord, as these seeds are believed to bring their beholders prosperity and good luck.
While some people will keep the seeds for good luck, many farmers will mix the seeds with their own seeds to plant to ensure a good crop in the coming year.