Update: 15:04 | 21/01/2020
Gardeners in a village on HCM city’s outskirts have been burning the midnight oil to spread golden Tet happiness to celebrant across the country.
Having the trees and plants bloom right at Tet (Lunar New Year festival) time is a skill that has been honed over decades by gardeners across the country.
At the Ba Son orchard, there are nearly 500 yellow mai trees being nurtured.
The Thu Duc Yellow Mai Village in HCM city’s Thu Duc District is home to around 20 orchards covering more than 30 hectares that are reserved for cultivating and tending to the yellow mai trees, whose blossoms are an indispensable part of Tet traditions in southern Vietnam, just as the peach blossoms are in the north.
Peak time of the year for HCM city’s largest yellow mai blossoms village is a week before Tet, the country’s biggest and most important festival.
At the Ba Son orchard, there are nearly 500 yellow mai trees being nurtured. Its owner Nguyen Thanh Nhut, said that weather has been quite favorable this year.
During peak days, orchard workers start their day from 6 a.m. and go on until 9 p.m.
"About two months ago, many regular businesses in Hanoi called me to place orders and a few days before Tet, we started packing and transporting them," he said.
The cross-country transportation of these bonsai trees are done by trucks, and they are returned in the same manner after the festival when the trees are hired, and not sold.
During peak days, orchard workers start their day from 6 a.m. and go on until 9 p.m., tending to the bonsai trees, welcoming customers, and wrapping them for transportation to different areas of the city, the region and other parts of the country.
A pickup transports a yellow mai tree to a private firm in District 3 that has hired it as Tet decoration for VND40 million ($1,730).
Nguyen Van Loc (R), the owner of an orchard on Pham Van Dong Street, introduces a yellow mai bonsai to a customer. "This job is no less difficult than that of farmers and for the whole year we only look forward to the Tet holiday to boost income.
"This year the weather has been quite good, so the care and trade is also more favorable," said Loc, who has more than 20 years of experience in growing yellow mai blossoms.
Yellow mai orchard owners in the village said that the trend to rent large trees is becoming more and more popular, because it is cheaper and hassle-free. Rents range from VND80-100 million.