Phu My Hung Flower Festival colors Tet holiday in HCMC

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The Phu My Hung Spring Flower Festival 2011 opened on Wednesday in Ho Chi Minh City's District 7, featuring what organizers say is the widest variety of Vietnamese flowers and ornamental trees to date.

The event, co-organized by Phu My Hung Corporation and the Association of Orchids and Ornamental Trees, includes more than 500 booths, displaying flowers, plants, fruits and other produce for the Tet (Lunar New Year) holiday.

One highlight of the week-long festival is a contest for special Vietnamese flowers and ornamental trees that hundreds of local artisans and farmers will participate in.

Nguyen Thien Tich, vice chairman of the Association of Orchids and Ornamental Trees, said Vietnam has a highly diverse range of plants and flowers about 12,000 different kinds.

During the festival, flower garlands and colored lanterns will be floated on the Ban Nguyet (Crescent) Lake near the Anh Sao (Starlight) Bridge, and a contest held to highlight orchids and adeniums brought in from Thailand.

At Meo (Cat) Square, a market of apricot and peach blossoms, Vietnamese countryside scenes and musical performances every night will keep the festival lively throughout, organizers said.

In 2010, Phu My Hung Spring Flower Festival drew around 500,000 visitors and more are expected this year, organizers said.

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