His Royal Highness Crown Prince Maha Vajiralongkorn presided over the ceremony, accompanied by Royal Consort HRH Princess Srirasm.
Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra, government officials and a large crowd of onlookers, including many farmers, also attended.
Permanent secretary for agriculture and cooperatives Chawalit Chukhachorn performed as Phraya Raek Na, or Lord of the Ploughing Ceremony. He led two sacred oxen, "Fah" and "Sai", to plough a furrow in the ceremonial ground, located not far from the Grand Palace.
Four women followed behind the oxen carrying gold and silver baskets filled with rice seeds, scattering the grain into the newly ploughed furrow.
Walking alongside the plough were official Brahmans from the Royal Court who chanted and blew conch shells.
The sacred oxen were offered seven bowls containing grass, paddy, maize, sesame seeds, soy beans, water and liquor. The oxen chose to eat maize and grass. The Brahman soothsayers interpreted this to signify a good harvest, abundant food and plentiful water for the year ahead.
The Brahman priests offered the Phraya Raek Na three pieces of folded cloth, each of a different length. The one he selected proved to be four kuebs (about one metre) long.
Based on his selection, water will be plentiful, while crops on higher ground will yield good harvests and those in low-lying areas will be slightly damaged.
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