Last updated: Thursday, January 24, 2019


Sa Pa Boat Orchid: Spring Charm

Posted: Monday, January 23, 2017

When Sa Pa puts on the cloak of beautiful spring, livened up by boisterous New Year market days and vividly coloured by handmade brocades, tourists far and wide flock to this land. They come to Sa Pa to admire the beauty of nature, explore distinctive cultural identities of highlanders, and, for many, to buy boat orchid (cymbidium) to decorate their home during the New Year Festival. In recent years, Sa Pa boat orchid has followed lowland people all over the country from the high mountain. Sa Pa boat orchid has become an interesting choice for well-off people.

Sa Pa boat orchid, especially Mong Tran orchid, is considered a specialty of Sa Pa. Thick petals, charming flower branches and green leaves in sunny springtime are tokens of a new year of happiness and prosperity. As the flower blossoms for many months before it withers, it symbolises abundance and prosperity, the reason businesspeople are attracted to boat orchid. The selling price of Sa Pa boat orchid depends on branches and colours, ranging from several million Vietnamese dong to hundreds of millions of Vietnamese dong a pot. This price can only be afforded by the rich.

Due to the high economic value of Sa Pa boat orchid, many grow it but success does not come to all. Growing Sa Pa boat orchid requires meticulous and tenacious effort. Mr. Le Van Tan, owner of an orchid garden in Ta Phin commune, Sa Pa district, said, after he had spent many years reading books, researching, exchanging with agricultural engineers and learning experience from local farmers, he started to grow Sa Pa boat orchid. After his first unsuccessful attempts, he now can cultivate beautiful boat orchid pots. As boat orchid is very hard to grow, he has to keep a close watch during its growth process. He must ensure growth elements for the plant such as spraying dewy water every day or shielding direct sunlight. As this plant grows in cool climate, when Sa Pa is covered with snow, he carries boat orchid to Vinh Phuc - his hometown - to ensure the growth and flowering during the New Year.

Outstanding in a colourful space of the Northwest, Sa Pa boat orchid enchants viewers with its elegant charm. Lush vitality from the wing star-shaped flowers increases the faith in a good year. This beautiful flower has also become a breadwinner for many local farmers.

Thao Phuong


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