Farmers in the Mekong Delta are growing more new flower varieties for the Tet (Lunar New Year) festival, which falls on January 25.
|Farmers in Dong Thap Province’s Sa Dec City grow daisies for the busy Tet holiday period. — VNA/VNS Photo Nguyen Van Tri|
In Dong Thap Province’s Sa Dec City, one of the delta’s largest flower growing areas, hundreds of new flower varieties, including various types of new foreign roses and daisies, have been planted for Tet.
Farmer Nguyen Phuoc Loc in Sa Dec’s Tan Khanh Dong Commune is growing dozens of thousands of rose pots with more than 130 varieties, many of which are new.
Nguyen Van Tiep, chairman of Tôi Yêu Màu Tím Clubhouse in Sa Dec, said the clubhouse’s farmers will supply more than 100,000 flower pots, including daisies of new varieties.
Seedlings of most of the new flower varieties are produced by the Dong Thap’s Hi-Tech Agriculture Centre.
Do Van Thuan, head of the Sa Dec Economy Bureau, said that flower farmers in recent years have switched from traditional to advanced farming techniques and are growing more new flower varieties.
Sa Dec farmers are expected to supply 2-3 million of pots of various varieties of flowers for Tet, according to the bureau.
In Ben Tre Province’s Cho Lach District, farmers will provide about 12 million pots of flowers and ornamental plants to the market, according to the district’s Agriculture and Rural Development Bureau.
Cho Lach is famous for its ornamental plants, daisies and ochna, a traditional Tet flower in the southern region.
Ornamental plants for Tet include those grown in the shapes of 12 animals representing the 12-year zodiac cycle in which each year is related to an animal.
Nguyen Van Cong, who grows ornamental plants in the shapes of zodiac animals, said his family normally hires about 20 workers to grow ornamental plants for Tet.
“The coming Tet is the Year of the Rat so we are making more ornamental plants in the shape of the rat,” he said.
He has orders for more than 100 rat-shaped ornamental plants.
The rat-shaped plants are 1.5 metre high and are sold at VND2-5 million (US$86-215) a plant.
In Tra Vinh Province’s Tra Vinh City, two traditional flower villages in Long Duc Commune – Vinh Yen and Vinh Hung – are growing 300,000 pots of flowers for Tet, many of which are new varieties.
Le Van Manh, secretary of the Long Duc Commune's Party Committee, said that farmers in the two villages in recent years had planted more new varieties to improve quality and diversify flower varieties for customers.
Most daisy, rose and other flower varieties planted in the two villages are foreign varieties.
The two villages include more than 120 households that have been growing flowers for more than 60 years.
Flower farmers in the two villages faced unfavourable weather conditions when they began growing Tet flowers this year. Most flowers for Tet bloom after 60-90 days.
Nguyen The Hien, a flower farmer in Vinh Yen Village, said because of the weather, farmers have had to pay more for tending and production costs to ensure flowers can bloom on Tet. The price of flowers is expected to be high on Tet, he said.
In Vinh Long Province, about 20 per cent of 5,000 ochna trees in the Phuoc Dinh ochna village in Long Ho District have bloomed because of irregular rains.
Besides unfavourable weather, the price of input materials for growing flowers has been high this year, which will increase prices by 10 per cent against last year, according to flower farmers in Sa Dec City.
Sa Dec flowers are supplied to HCM City as well as the southern and northern regions.
Sa Dec flower village in Dong Thap and ornamental flower village in Cho Lach District of Ben Tre are bustling not because of flood of visitors but flower growers are busy preparing for the upcoming Lunar New Year, which will begin on January 25.
The atmosphere of a traditional Tet (Lunar New Year) will be nudged closer to both Vietnamese and foreigners at the Tet Festival, which is scheduled to take place in Ho Chi Minh City from January 3-5, 2020.