A workshop organized in Hanoi recently, attended
by officials and experts from many ministries and agencies, to set the standards
to choose Vietnam’s national flower.
Lotus, yellow apricot, peach blossom or….?
In many countries, flowers have become national symbols. If one mentions
“the land of cherry blossom,” “the country of roses,” or “the country of
tulips,” everyone would know immediately that he talks about Japan, Bulgaria or
Some neighboring countries of Vietnam have their national flowers: Laos with
champa flower, Malaysia with rose-mallow, the Philippines with jasmine.
Meanwhile, Cuba chose butterfly jasmine, Canada has a maple leaf, Cambodia
selected rice and Australia is known by the kangaroo.
In 2006, fashion designer Minh Hanh used the lotus as patterns on ao dai for
chiefs of states who attended the APEC Summit in Hanoi. Many people think of the
lotus as the national flower of Vietnam.
Until now agencies have not officially discussed Vietnam’s national flower. This
issue is also very hot on online forums. People suggested many kinds of flowers
like lotus, yellow apricot, peach blossom, bamboo, rice, etc.
Lotus is considered to show many characteristics of the Vietnamese. This flower
appeared early in Vietnamese art and archaeologists have unearthed fossils of
lotuses at the Thang Long royal citadel. However, India already chose the lotus
as its national flower.
The Ministry of Culture, Tourism and Sports set up the Steering Board and
Compilation Committee of Vietnam’s National Flower Scheme in April 2010. The
steering board has four members and the compilation board has 10 members, who
are experts from related agencies.
At a workshop in June, Ministry of Foreign Affairs official emphasized the need
to have national flower to advertise Vietnam to the world.
Vi Kien Thanh, chief of the Art – Photography and Exhibition Department under
the Ministry of Culture, Tourism and Sports, stated that the compilation
committee set standards and suggested some kinds of flowers as national flowers.
According to Thanh, the national flower must be a symbol for cultural diversity
of Vietnamese ethnic groups.
More workshops will be held in Vietnam, Da Nang and HCM City, attracting
experts, researchers and scientists. The selection of national power will be
also opened for the people’s opinions.
The Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism will make the final decision based
on the opinions of experts and the public, and then submit it to the Government
for approval. The Ministry plans to finish this task in 2010.
At present, the lotus is the brightest candidate.