Steven Ang’s -Hydroponic Farm

several varieties of lettuce are grown in this greenhouse

Steven Ang’s Vegetable Farm – One of the features of this vegetable farm is the Hydroponics (from the Greek words hydro water and ponos labor) is a method of growing plants using mineral nutrient solutions, without soil. Soil less culture.
Gericke originally defined hydroponics as crop growth in mineral nutrient solutions, with no solid medium for the roots. He objected in print to people who applied the term hydroponics to other types of soil less culture such as sand culture and gravel culture.

The distinction between hydroponics and soil less culture of plants has often been blurred. Soil less culture is a broader term than hydroponics; it only requires that no soils with clay or silt are used. Note that sand is a type of soil yet sand culture is considered a type of soil less culture. Hydroponics is a subset of soil less culture. Many types of soil less culture do not use the mineral nutrient solutions required for hydroponics.

Mr. Steven Ang is an active member of the Philippine Orchid Society , Philippine Horticultural Society , a certified  chef  and  an entrepreneur .

According to Mr. Ang,  he supplies several restaurants and supermarket in Metro Manila and surrounding areas. He had an interesting collections of cactus, hibiscus, roses in his farm.

members and guests bought hydroponic  grown lettuce

The tour group was treated with a free sampling of hydroponic grown lettuce and before leaving the farm , some of the members bought freshly harvested vegetables sold at an ex-farm price.


Victory Garden

Last May 23, 2009 the members of the Philippine Orchid Society went to the province of Cavite for a field trip.

collection of bonsai and ornamental plants

One of the gardens  that was included in the itinerary was Victory Bonsai & Ornamental Garden in Cavite. The place had an impressive collection of cactus and succulents, bonsai, fruits trees,  orchids, ornamental plants and also accepts landscaping jobs  . The family also sells beautiful ceramic and potteries at retail and wholesale price.

specimen sized opuntia cactus in a flat dish

The proprietors of the garden is also an active members of the Cactus and Succulent Society of the Philippines, Philippine Horticultural Society , Philippine Orchid Society .

The garden is also perfect hub  for meetings, weddings and birthday parties. tour  group  was treated with late morning breakfast which consists of instant coffee ,   a pancake meal from a fast food restaurant.

members and guests posed for a group shot

The group happily pose for a group shot and  went into a buying spree .

For inquiries:

Telephone ( 632) 2531286

Fax (632) 255-8626

Mobile (0917)5397841 / (0922)875 7539


Come & Visit!!! Philippines’ biggest and most prestigious international trade show on agribusiness, food and fishery. THEME: ” Sustainable Food Production: Focus on the Filipino Market”

The country’s world-class food products are set to draw international attention at the forthcoming Agrilink, Foodlink and Aqualink 2009, which is slated at the World Trade Center, Roxas Blvd., Pasay City on October 9-11.

  • 16th International Agribusiness Exhibition and Seminars
  • 10th International Food Processing, Packaging and Products Exhibition
  • 5th National Fisheries Exhibition and Seminars


October 8, 3:30-5:30pm (Thursday), Venue: Tent, WTC

  • Snap Hydrophonics
  • Indigenous Plants for Health and Wellness
  • Food Safety Assurance System: Key to Meet Global Demands for Safety & Quality of Exported Food Products
  • Quantum Agriculture

October 9, 10:30am-12:30pm (Friday), Venue: Tent, WTC

  • Snap Hydrophonics
  • Indigenous Plants for Health and Wellness
  • Making Money Out of Guppies & Other Live Bearers
  • Raising Koi & Other Egg Layers for Fun & Profit
  • Going for the Big Time by Raising High Value Ornamentals
  • Niche Market vs. Mass Market in Aquaculture
  • Organic Local Market & Global Trade
  • Organic Poultry & Piggery Presentation


  • HUCC Postharvest Processing Technologies
  • The Road to the Control of Disease Outbreaks in Pigs: No Shortcuts…No Blind Curves..
  • Bamboo for Sustainable Environmental Protection & Economic Development


  • Seminar on Demystifying eLearning
  • Investment Opportunities in Mariculture Parks
  • Culture & Market Potentials of Pangasius
  • Introducing the Humback Grouper
  • Cage Culture of Macrobrachium in Inland Waters
  • The Use of Bamboo & Local Materials for Local Buildings

October 10, 10:30am-12:30pm (Saturday), Venue: Tent, WTC

  • All About Medicinal Herbs


  • Business Opportunities in Mariculture Parks/Zones
  • Climate Adaptation Measures for Fisherfolks: The Region 8 Success Story
  • Farming Potential of Peneaus Vannamei or PacificWhite Shrimp in Freshwater Systems
  • Improvement of Farmed Seaweed Seedstocks Through Tissue Culture
  • Development Plan for the Philippine Ornamental Fish Industry
  • Global Competitiveness of the Philippine Ornamental Fish
  • The Wawa & Yoreka Success Stories
  • Ornamental Fish Health & Quality Control Protocols
  • Export Procedures for Ornamental Fish


  • Development Indexing – Social Return of Investment

Special Events (Venue: Lobby, WTC)

  • 10:30am-12:00nn – Agri-Kapihan Forum: Latest in Organic Farming
  • 3:00pm-5:00pm – Cooking Demonstration: Latest Trends of Meat Processing with the Use of Fiber Technology

Paco Park centuries-old trees

Paco Park is a 4,114.80 square meter recreational garden area and was once Manila   municipal cemetery during the Spanish colonial period. It is located along General Luna St. and at the east end of Padre Faura street in Paco district  of the southern  part of Manila.

The park  was originally planned as a municipal cemetery of the rich and established aristocratic Spanish  families  who resided in the old Manila, or the city within the walls of Intramuros  during the Spanish colonial era.  Most of the wealthy families interred the remains of their loved ones inside the municipal cemetery in what was once the district of Dilao (former name for Paco). The cemetery was built in the late 1700s but was completed several decades later and in 1822.  The inner wall erected according to the plan of Maestro de Obras Nicolas Ruiz was originally constructed exclusively for the Iberian dead . The cemetery was used to inter victims of a cholera epidemic that swept across the city. The cemetery was enlarged in 1859.

The cemetery is circular in shape, with an inner circular fort that was the original cemetery and with the niches that were placed or located within the hollow walls. As the population continued to grow, a second outer wall was built with the thick adobe walls were hollowed as niches and the top of the walls were made into pathways for promenades. A Roman Catholic chapel was built inside the walls of the Paco Park and it was dedicated to Saint Pancratius.

Governor General  Ramon Solano was   interred at the chapel inside the Saint Pancratius .

Century-old acacia trees within Paco Park in Paco , Manila

Acacia ( Samanea saman) trees were planted in the park in the later half of the 19th century imported from South America were added in order to further beautify the park. These trees witness the interment of Dr. Jose Protacio Rizal y Realonda days after his execution at Bagumbayan ( Rizal Park). Relatives of Dr. Jose Rizal  purposely inverted his name to avoid the Spanish officials to detect  his whereabouts . 2 years later , his remains were exhumed and placed in an urn kept in his mother’s home in Calle Magdalena  Binondo.

inverted name of Jose P. Rizal inside the Paco Park

In 1912, burial or interment at the Paco Park ceased. It had been the burial ground for several generations and descendants of those who were buried in the park had the remains of their ancestors transferred. During the  outbreak of the second world war , Japanese forces used Paco Park as a central supply and ammunition depot. The high thick adobe walls around the park was ideal for defensive positions of the Japanese. The Japanese just before the liberation of Manila in 1945 , dug several trenches and pill boxes around and within the Park with three 75 millimeter guns to defend their fortification . The park was converted into a national park in 1965 during the term of President Diosdado Macapagal . Paco Park’s grandeur was slowly restored after the war and since then has remained as a public park and promenade for many teen age sweethearts who could spend quiet moments along the park’s benches and private alcoves.

Dendrobium orchids mounted on a live  tree

Paco Park and its care was placed under the responsibility of the National Park’s Development Committee (NPDC) during the regime of President Ferdinand E. Marcos , through the efforts of former First Lady Imelda R. Marcos, culture  and arts was given emphasis and priority in the country and Paco Park was one of the few venues chosen to host events related to culture. On February 29, 1980 , then Press and Cultural Attache of the Embassy of the Federal Republic of Germany in the Philippines, Dr. Christoph Jessen with then NPDC Vice-Chairperson Mr. Teodoro Valencia started a classical concert within Paco Park as part of the celebrations for the “Philippine-German Month,” and the program became a tradition, a weekly fare held every Friday afternoons and called the, “Paco Park Presents.

native Dischidia ionantha drapped the trunks of this tree

Some of the historical trees were eventually toppled  down by  Bagyong Rosing (Typhoon Angela)in 1995 and Bagyong Milenyo ( Typhoon Xangsane) in 2006.

What remains of the old heritage trees inside the park needed rehabilitation.

Saint Anne Church

Saint Anne Church in Taguig City

This 400 year old church was a survivor of war and calamities but still held its ground and now the center of Catholic Churches in Taguig City, Philippines.  The town celebrates it town fiesta every July  26.

centuries-old acacia tree within the church patio

The old acacia tree ( Samanea saman ) is a mute witness to the revolution of 1896 , the American occupation of the town , the Japanese atrocities during the war and the post war economic boom of the town.

collection of various church artifacts

The church had accumulated collection of priest vestments, books, baptismal record, old photographs, antique santos set in a museum.

Ms. Sandra Aguinaldo -program host ” I-Witness report “

Ms. Sandra AguinaldoI-Witness program host , segment writer and reporter featured this in ” Puno ng Kasaysayan” or ” Historical Trees” episode of the program aired last October 7 , 2008 early Tuesday morning on GMA kapuso channel 7.

In some instances , people within the community believed that there are unseen spirits living within these heritage trees. Cutting or hurting these trees  made some environmental group like tree huggers  a crusade that is worth emulating .

tree huggers with Ms. Sandra Aguinaldo

In a country plagued with selective amnesia especially in history and heritage  , where saving  heritage trees are not a priority of the government .   It is almost up to the communities where these trees lives to nurture and save these trees.

Bagyong Ondoy aftermath, a collector’s tale

Bagyong Ondoy (Typhoon Ketsana international code) is now considered as one of the worst rains and flooding which hit Metro Manila, Central Luzon and Southern Luzon. Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAG-ASA) Quezon city rain gauge measured 410.6 mm ( 16 inches) of rains that fell in the span of 9 hours!  The rainfall is equivalent to more than 1 month of rainfall for the month of September.

The last one recorded was June of 1967 with 341  mm of rainfall in a day. There are several stories of survival and how collectors manage to save one belongings or their collection.

A well-known Filipino director saved his precious Picasso paintings in a posh riverside subdivision while rampaging floodwaters reached the first level of his home. Another Filipino – Chinese collector managed to save his stamp collection by storing them on the 3rd floor of his home near Sienna College that was under several feet of floodwaters. A toy collector from Antipolo managed to salvage his entire toy collections by putting them in the attic several hours before his home was inundated by flood which reached second level of his home. Two stamp and curio dealers in Recto Manila collections were reached by floodwaters.

While several antique dealers from Ermita collection suffered water damage. These are just few of the harrowing tales of collectors saving their precious collections that have been part of their lives. But in this time of epic floods and countless people suffering, saving ones earthly belongings just came second to saving their precious lives.

An orchid and plant collector in Rolling Hills Resort and Orchard in Barangay Ugong, Valenzuela city suffered major damage in his collection.  Several days of rains and floods took a heavy toll in his collection. Several of his orchids were hit by fungus and floodwater dislodged many of his mounted orchids. I told this collector to quickly salvage most of his collections and try to immediately spray fungicide to his precious collections. After all plants needed to be saved.

Philippine stamp issued in 1943 with ” Baha”

1943, December 8. Semi-Postal.  Flood Relief Campaign (Baha).  Overprinted definitive issues.  Watermarked (curved wavy lines), Perf 13 x 13 1/2.  Bureau of Printing, Manila (overprint).  100/sheet, 10 x 10.

Floods and natural catastrophes are recorded in the annals of our nation’s history. A strong typhoon swept in November 1943 in the country.  A set of semi-postal  stamp series  was issued in December 1943 after  a strong typhoon caused massive flooding  in order to raise funds for the victims . Then Japanese sponsored republic with overprinted “ Baha” ( Flood)  was meant to raise additional revenue for the cash strapped government, the flood killed countless number of people and animals.

Issued December 8, 1943 which coincided with the second anniversary of the Great East Asia War (GEAWAR).  The official First Day Cover cachet commemorates this event instead of the flood relief campaign.  Due to strong protests from the public, particularly the stamp collectors, an appropriate FDC cachet was issued on December 22.  This cover is referred to as the Second First Day Cover of this issue.

Back then, people would barely write letters to their love ones since letters were heavily censored and the Japanese routinely opens letters to see any propaganda items being stored in the letters.

informal settlers within Kingspoint subdivision

Floods affected a lot of people especially those who lived near the creeks, rivers and flood plains. Informal settlers in various parts of the Metropolis also suffered a lot of losses.  examples are Bicol, Oro, Dupax, Alipio compound within Kingspoint subdivision in Barangay  Bagbag  , Novaliches in Quezon City . According to some of the old-timers in the place, this was the worst flood in recent memories.

Philippine National Red Cross sponsored relief operation

Residents of the subdivision, NGO groups like Philippine National Red Cross, Sagip Kapamilya, Kapuso, government and barangay had extended help to these informal settlers.

Although majority of these settlers do not pay monthly dues, taxes and sometimes post a security threat in surrounding villages.  Still a lot more of the residents in the informal communities are deeply entrench in the community, some are tricycle drivers, taxi drivers, ambulant vendor, security guards, lavanderas, barangay tanods, household helpers, carpenters among others.

Days after the great deluge, hope spring eternal to these communities which started to rebuilt from pieces of plywood, galvanized roof, with  the spirit of bayanihan still lives on…

Here is a simple checklist on what to with your collections during floods:

1.) Follow all emergency rules, guidelines by the National Disaster Coordinating Council -Philippines or Pambansang Tanggapan para sa Pagtugon ng Sakuna which is under the Philippine National Defense and office of the President.

2.)Try to store your collectibles especially cellulose based materials in cool, dry place as much as possible with even temperature ( air-conditioned room and temperature controlled environments ( with de-humidifier) for professional collections like those in Lopez Museum , Ortigas Gallery which had extensive collections of books, paper based materials, post cards, old photographs, paintings  ) quite expensive to maintain .  For flood prone areas , collectors placed their collections in 2nd floor or 3rd floor of their houses away from flood waters.

3.) Wear protective gear like face mask  and gloves .

4.) Document the extent of the damage -take photographs (old buildings, stamps, documents, paintings etc…) wait for the flood water to recede.

5.) Clean everything with diluted disinfectant  that got wet or had been soaked by flood water.

6.) Allow saturated materials to dry using natural ventilation. Avoid drying them under the hot tropical sun !  especially paintings , stamps and cellulose based materials.

7.) If they are from flood damaged stamps or soaked off SASE stamps from envelopes that were never used, they are still legal, however, it is a real hassle to put  glue these on envelopes whenever you want to send a letter.

8.) Try to use cotton gloves for pre-war stamps . Paper used before the war may be brittle.

9.) Paper that has been in equatorial  regions with heavy  rainy seasons are obvious but just as invidious is the long-term effect of micro-organisms introduced in a variety of ways but especially from personal handling, breathing on them and especially on stamps and banknotes , the effect of licking and  holding . Change of color in stamp is due to temperature , moist and humidity ( tropical stains) cellulose based materials are susceptible to these damage.

10.) Knowledge of inks used before is quite essential .

11.) Never try to attempt or  lift a wet  paper from the water by a corner. Always place the cover on a suitable sized  flat plate of glass before immersion and lift out using the glass. The cover can be dried and pressed between sheets of blotting paper in a ‘press’ including the glass plate. Use gloves at all times !

Jardin De Miramar

Jardin de Miramar is situated on a three-hectare property in San Jose Extension in hilly Antipolo, a quiet, genteel area. Little used now by the family, the property was converted into a garden-like venue for parties, and welcomed its first visitors this Christmas season- There is a special house called Casa Santa Clause which housed the vast collections of the owner Ms. Edna Del Rosario accumulated since the late 1990’s . Their were over 1,500 pieces of Santa collections from different parts of the world.

The family decided to convert the place into a party, event, venue place . The property was divided into different themed areas. The family decided to open the place to the public in 2006 and various movie outfit, television stations, morning shows , magazine , travel channels and BLOG sites had already featured the place.

Jardin de Miramar—as the place is called—hosts parties, receptions and other functions in its lush multi-level gardens landscaped by Tony Leano with stately royal palms and serenity waterfalls. Hammocks strung between tall trees tempt visitors to laze an afternoon away with a good book or a nap, lulled by the soothing sounds of water and the wind rustling through the trees.

Galleon replica

A unique feature is a 30-foot boat, reconstructed from an actual 50-year-old fishing boat used by the owner’s family in their deep sea fishing business- The Angelica was retired and some of its wood was used to build the “Noah’s Ark” in the Galera section of the garden, which also features a lighthouse, totem poles and a marine-themed metal sculpture by Eduardo  Castrillo. Dramatic lighting was done by renowned lighting designer Shoko Matsumoto, who also designed the Santa House.

House of Santa

The rest of the wood from the boat Angelica was used for the trellises, benches and other accents throughout the garden.

Behind the Santa house is an area called Intramuros, a mini version of Manila’s old walled city. Featuring adobe walls with an aged look, it is reminiscent of turn-of-the-century Spanish architecture.

This season—and anytime of the year—visit Santa and all his relatives at this very special venue, and put some ho-ho-ho into your life. Likewise enjoy the rest of the place and you’ll surely have a memorable day of your life!

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