Saturday, September 18, 2021

Ex-drug hub goes green with community veggie plot

Flat Colombia in Taman Keramat, just a few minutes' drive from the iconic Kuala Lumpur Twin Towers, has a dark past. It was once a hub of illicit drug activities but today, its thriving community garden is the pride of residents. The 'rehabilitation' was thanks to help from a commercial bank which allowed for the use of a plot of land.

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A field near Flat Colombia is used for the community garden which produces vegetables for residents’ daily consumption.

Pak Raja, the caretaker of the urban community garden at Flat Colombia, inspects a labu sayong, a type of pumpkin.

Flat residents can help themselves to whatever vegetables they get from the community garden.

Produce from the garden is also distributed to residents, an example of self-sustainability in an era of economic specialisation.

Pak Raja is well known in Flat Colombia, having been entrusted with the task of maintaining the urban community garden which has proven beneficial to residents there.

At the nearby Gombak River stands the ‘tree of hope’, where residents hang notes sharing their hopes and dreams for the community.

Residents fish at the Gombak River, a key waterway connecting Kuala Lumpur with neighbouring cities.

Thanks to the residents’ self-sustainability efforts, Flat Colombia produces its own composite fertiliser using fermentation from a mix of vegetables, fruits, shrimp paste (belacan), palm sugar (gula melaka) and milk, among others.

Resident Norrizan Mahasan pours fertilised earth over some newly planted pumpkin seeds.

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