DONG THAP (VNS) — It is a bit like selling ice to Eskimos, but that is exactly what flower farmers in the Mekong Delta are managing to do – selling flowers to Da Lat, the country's most important flower-growing place.
|A flower grower in Ben Tre's Cho Lach District hopes to earn at least VND200 million (US$9,500) this season.— VNS Photo Le Hoang Vu
Many floriculturists in Dong Thap and Ben Tre Provinces said they earned much money from selling their flowers to the resort city.
Some kinds of flowers they grow do not grow well in Da Lat, so they have a market there.
Farmers in the renowned Sa Dec flower village in Dong Thap and Cai Mon flower village in Ben Tre said they get higher incomes by growing several Madagascar periwinkle varieties which used to be imported until recently and are popular in Da Lat and elsewhere.
For long, the flower has been grown in Viet Nam, but only in two colours. The imported ones were in many other colours, and after they proved popular, farmers began to grow them in the country.
Nguyen Thi Ha, a farmer in Ben Tre's Cho Lach District who hopes to earn at least VND200 million (US$9,500) this season, said traders from in and around Da Lat buy large quantities of Madagascar periwinkle because people believe the flower brings them luck.
Ha, who has been farming for 15 years in Cai Mon Flower Village, said the flower has become very popular in recent times.
"Last year other farmers and I earned big profits from growing this strain of flower. Several people then began to plant this tree, so the price fell a little bit.
"However, it is the favourite of customers in Da Lat." Every day she sells more than 200 pots of this flower, which takes only two or three months to bloom.
She has 10,000 pots for Tet (the Lunar New Year), and is sure they would sell out quickly.
Besides Madagascar periwinkle, traders from Da Lat also buy flowers that grow in their own place, and she does not know why.
"I am surprised. I ask [them] why they come to the Mekong Delta to buy flowers, and they say they buy here because they want more beautiful flowers and at cheaper prices."
Nguyen Huu Thuong, 70, another flower farmer in Cho Lach District, said he is set to send 500 pots of the flower in a variety of colours to Lam Ha District near Da Lat.
Besides Madagascar Periwinkle, Thuong, who grows more than 180 kinds of flowers and trees on his 5,000sq.m farm, also sells several other kinds of flowers to Da Lat traders.
Ha, Thuong, and other farmers here are now growing flowering plants that will bloom during Tet.
Thuong is optimistic that Madagascar periwinkle price will be at least 30 percent higher than last year, when he sold a pot at VND120,000. — VNS