Mekong flower farmers prepare for Tet hinh anh 1Flower field in Ben Tre province. (Photo: VNA)

HCM City (VNA) - Farmers in the Mekong Delta are busy with their flowers and other agricultural products in preparation for Tet (Lunar New Year) holiday, which falls on February 16.

Nguyen Thanh Dao from Long Thoi commune in Ben Tre province’s Cho Lach district, one of the province’s flower villages, said "The closer to Tet 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 Tet.

Timely blossoming will made it easy for the flowers to be sold and enjoyed, he explained.

Dr Bui Thanh Liem, head of the agriculture and rural development office of Cho Lach disctrict, said flower farmers in the district will supply to the market about eight million potted flowers this Tet.

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 Cuu Long Delta, including Dong Thap province’s Cao Lanh city, Tien Giang province’s Cai Be district and Hau Giang province’s Chau Thanh district, farmers have paid great attention to their mango crops for Tet.

Nguyen Van Nam, in Long Truong A commune of Hau 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 Tet.

Farmers have strived to find ways to make the mangos ripen right at Tet, 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 Van Hung, head of the Duy Tan Hoi Quan Club in Hoa An commune, Cao Lanh city, said mango prices were about 16,000 VND per kg, a reduction of 5,000-7,000 VND 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 Dong Thap province, where the fruit is produced in only one crop a year and harvested right at Tet, farmers are busy with their gardens.

But according to Lai Vung Pink Tangerine Cooperative, the fruits at many gardens may ripen before Tet 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 Tet, the cooperative said.-VNA