|Dead pepper plants at a plantation in central Quảng Trị Province. — VNA Photo|Viet Nam News
QUẢNG TRỊ — Pepper plants in the central province of Quảng Trị were destroyed following continuous rain and simultaneous cold spells.
A report by the province’s Department of Cultivation and Plant Protection said that a total area of 300ha of pepper plants had died in the province’s Vĩnh Linh, Gio Linh and Cam Lộ districts.
The area is only increasing despite efforts to save the plants. “Almost 110 of my plants died. The plants withered and died within 10 days and my spraying efforts failed,” said Trương Quang Thắng, a pepper grower in Vĩnh Linh District’s Vĩnh Giang Commune.
Thắng said the withering phenomenon appears during the long rainy days and the cold spells.
Lê Vỹ, the commune’s deputy chairman, said that due to prolonged rain and cold spell, diseases have spread quickly and killed off 50ha plantation in the commune, with some plantations seeing all the plants dead.
Vỹ said the commune has encouraged growers to drain out the water swiftly to save the remaining area of pepper in the province.
Nguyễn Hồng Phương, director of the cultivation department, said local growers had dug holes into the ground, which is an out-of-date cultivating method, to grow pepper plants.
The holes facilitated flooding around the plant roots and the flooding worsened, as the growers did not create small canals between the lines of the plant to reduce inundation, she said.
The department also recommended cutting out the withering branches on each plant before the phenomenon could spread to the entire plant. — VNS