Flower farmers prepare for Tết
Farmers in the Mekong (Cửu Long) Delta are busy with their flowers and other agricultural products in preparation for the Tết (Lunar New Year) holiday, which falls on February 16.
A flower field in Bến Tre Province. — VNS Photo
Nguyễn Thành Đạo from Long Thới Commune in Bến Tre Province’s Chợ Lách District, one of the province’s flower villages, said "The closer to the Tết holiday, the busier for flower farmers, because households in the village have poured money, time and effort in their flower farming so that their flowers can blossom on time at Tết.
Timely blossoming will made it easy for the flowers to be sold and enjoyed, he explained.
Dr Bùi Thanh Liêm, head of Agriculture and Rural Development office of Chợ Lách Disctrict, said flower farmers in the district will supply to the market about eight million potted flowers this Tết.
Besides traditional flowers and bonsai, farmers will focus on making more bonsai featuring the 12 lunar animal symbols as there is high demand for them, he said.
Planting flowers depend much on the weather, he said, adding that the weather in recent months was relatively good for the development of flowers.
However, the agricultural sector regularly recommends farmers to closely monitor the weather to prevent pests as well as prepare measures to cope with unfavourable weather, he said.
In the main mango cultivation areas in the Cửu Long Delta, including Đồng Tháp Province’s Cao Lãnh City, Tiền Giang Province’s Cái Bè District and Hậu Giang Province’s Châu Thành District, farmers have paid great attention to their mango crops for Tết.
Nguyễn Văn Nam, in Long Trường A Commune of Hậu Giang Province, said this year has an extra lunar month. Therefore, mango trees at some mango gardens have blossomed earlier than planned, and the fruits will be ripe before Tết.
Farmers have strived to find ways to make the mangos ripen right at Tết, but this will push up production cost and affects the trees’ health, he said.
The recent fall in mango prices is another worrying trend for farmers.
La Văn Hùng, head of the Duy Tân Hội Quán Club in Hòa An Commune, Cao Lãnh City, said mango prices were about VNĐ16,000 per kg, a reduction of VNĐ5,000-7,000 per kg compared to the same period last year.
Hopefully, from now until the Lunar New Year, mango prices will move up to favour farmers, he said.
In the “kingdom” of pink tangerines in Lai Vung Dictrict of Đồng Tháp Province, where the fruit is produced in only one crop a year and harvested right at Tết, farmers are busy with their gardens.
But according to Lai Vung Pink Tangerine Co-operative, the fruits at many gardens may ripen before Tết due to this year having an extra lunar month.
In addition, many trees were dead due to the impact of recent diseases on trees, it said.
Agricultural and relevant agencies have supported farmers in controlling the disease as well as applying techniques to enable the fruits to harvest at Tết, the co-operative said./.