WAT PHO HOM (วัดโพธิ์หอม)
Wat Pho Hom or the Monastery of the Fragrant Bodhi Tree is an active monastery located north of Ayutthaya in the Pho Sam Ton
fields of Pho Sam Ton sub-district of Bang Pahan in Ayutthaya Province.

The still active monastery is located between
Wat Muang and Wat Kamphaeng on the west bank of Khlong Ban Muang,  a stretch of
the old
Lopburi River.

Wat Pho Hom was established around 1819 AD on the premises of a former temple of the Ayutthayan era. The monastery received
its boundary stones three years later in 1822 AD.

The temple was named after a old large Bodhi tree in its location. When the tree started to bud it shed a fragrant smell, hence the name
of the monastery. [1]

The Bodhi tree or Ton Pho (Ficus Religiosa) is the sacred fig tree under which the Lord Buddha was sitting when he received his
enlightenment. The tree is found in most of the temple premises, but is not grown in the compound of houses. The Bo tree in the temple
is usually a tall shady tree, around which people sometimes wrap a yellow robe in the same manner as  they dress a Buddha image
with a yellow cloth. Some people place bamboo poles, trimmed and whitewashed, as supports to the holy tree. In the old days cowry
shells used as token money, were inserted inside the bamboo poles. Poor people would bury the bones and ashes of their dear ones
near the root of the Bo tree so that they may be near the holy symbol of the Lord Buddha. [2]

The monastery is situated in Geo Coord: 14° 25' 11.84" N, 100° 32' 44.50" E.


[1] http://www.watkhok.com - retrieved 21 December 2012.
[2] Some Siamese Superstitions about trees and plants - Phya Anuman Rajadhon - JSS Vol 49.1 - 1961 - page 60.
Text & photographs by Tricky Vandenberg - January 2013