ClockSaturday, 24/06/2023 09:28

The return of the lotus

TTH.VN - The expansion of lotus area also means that the area of polluted water surface is gradually narrowed. The lotus does not only grow at heritage sites but also exists in landscape lakes of temples, pagodas, shrines, showing off its fragrance in the remote countryside...

Spreading the values of Hue lotusHue Lotus Festival 2023 to be held from June 23 to 25White lotus flowers in early summerEnjoying tea in the Royal Palace

 Lotus in Ho Thanh hao (the protective moat surrounding the Citadel)

The old days and dreams

When I was in 6th grade 45 years ago, on our summer vacation, a group of friends in my class asked our parents’ permissions for going to the beach, which is of course, the nearest beach in my hometown: Thuan An.

We only travel to the beach in the morning and went home in the afternoon, and our means of transport at that time were nothing but bicycles. Yet, everyone was excited and restless for a sleep. From a day before, we prepared food and water, then gathered at the house of a friend that was spacious and convenient to sleep over so that we could wake up and ride a bike early in the next morning. The goal was somehow to go to the sea and still have time to watch the sunrise.

After waiting for a long time, the temple bell also rang. We all immediately got up, cleaned up quickly and then took our bikes to depart. Our road to the beach passed through the “Cua Ngan” bridge of the Hue Citadel. Without mentioning, we all suddenly stopped our bikes.

What a carpet of white lotus flowers, filled with fragrant scents and pure air at the foot of the bridge. How could we, the children who have never woken up so early, have the opportunity to see a whole carpet of lotus flowers blooming and emitting incense at the fullest time of lotus life? So, even though nobody called or invited us, we still had to hesitate to stop, take a breath, and admire before regretfully leaving for the sea...

 Lotus at the foot of Hien Nhon gate

Time passed quickly. After many occasions of returning to the Citadel, I found that most of the water surface here, from the Ho Thanh hao, lakes, including the famous Tinh Tam Lake... were empty of lotuses. Instead, they were filled up with water spinach, water hyacinth…

It is easy to understand. The lotus flower is also fickle. Do not rely on the phrase “despite being close to the mud, it does not reek the smell of the mud”. Lotus grows in muddy but it must be clean mud. It cannot grow in polluted mud, or more accurately, it cannot live. Anyone who can afford to invest in cleaning ponds for planting lotus, may suffer a loss. That is also another reason why the citadel is increasingly absent of lotus.

Knowing that, but I am dazed to feel sad and hope that one day, the water spinach and water hyacinth will be removed and replaced by the fragrant lotus flowers. Therefore, the beauty of the Citadel and the Imperial City will also sublimate many times accordingly…

Sustainable “re-appearance”

It seemed just a dream, yet the happy day unexpectedly comes. It has been too difficult that I “forgot” the appearance of lotus, but its beauty and value of the lotus is not easily lost. Then, the water surface areas in the Imperial Citadel, the Imperial mausoleums, ponds and moats in Hue Citadel were in turn renovated and planted with lotus.

Such effort is not as easy as growing vegetables. However, opinions of local citizens and tourists are overwhelmingly supportive. Meanwhile, the re-appearance of lotus in the heritage area seems to give strength to the heritage conservators. Correspondingly, the lotus carpets are gradually spread.

Hue Monuments Conservation Center also conducts research and restores the typical white lotus variety of Hue. This lotus variety has pure white and very fragrant flowers, and delicious seeds. Also starting from a few small “citadel” areas, the white lotus variety has now spread, covered the water surface of Tinh Tam Lake and revived this very famous monument of Hue.

 Tinh Tam lake at present...

The expanded lotus area also means that the polluted water surface area is gradually narrowed. Not only heritage agencies but also people and businesses also participate in planting lotus. The lotus does not only grow at heritage sites but also exists in landscape lakes of temples, pagodas, shrines, showing off its beauty and fragrance in the remote countryside, from midland and mountainous areas to remote inshore and lagoon neighborhoods...

 Pure lotus of Hue

The development of life also “reveals” the value of lotus to its maximum. Flowers for arranging and marinating tea have captivated many people. Then lotus seeds, lotus green embryos, lotus roots, lotus rootlets... are all products. Even lotus leaves also give growers an additional source of income.

A female owner of a pretty famous restaurant on Nhat Le Street just told me that she was planning to develop the product of rice wrapped in lotus leaf. However, she was wondering if her customers would understand and accept a little higher price because the price of lotus leaves must be “counted”.

She revealed that each lotus leaf cost her VND 4,000. Not to mention that lotus ponds in the blooming season can become popular check-in points and help pond owners earn more income from their service fees... It is enough to see that the lotus surely brings much more benefits than water spinaches do. Therefore, I strongly believe that the dream of lotus flower carpets in relics will not only exist but also spread sustainably.

This morning, I wandered around Tinh Tam Lake and gave a view to see thousands of lotuses. From June 23-25, the Hue Lotus Festival 2023 will take place here. People are invited to come to admire the lotus, immerse themselves in Tinh Tam and feel the values of lotus in daily activities as well as spiritual life of the people of Hue…

By Hien An
Be the first to review this post!


Refined lotus seed sweet soup in Hue

Visitors to Hue in the summer season are greeted with the sight of fragrant lotus blossoms adorning Tinh Tam Lake, their white petals fluttering like delicate butterflies in the breeze. The gentle and refreshing fragrance of lotus permeates the surroundings, and a passing encounter with this scene instantly uplifts one's spirits.

Refined lotus seed sweet soup in Hue
The lagoon beckons

Anyone who has ever been attached will tenderly love “the shallow sea” - the largest mangrove area in Southeast Asia. They try to preserve and promote the value of Tam Giang - Cau Hai lagoon... with all their love and enthusiasm. Many other residents are also joining hands to protect their livelihood and that of future descendants.

The lagoon beckons
Opening of the Hue Lotus Festival 2023 – Lotus Beautifies Hue

On the evening of June 23, the Hue Lotus Festival 2023, themed "Lotus Beautifies Hue," was officially opened at Tinh Tam Lake in Hue City. The event is directed by the Provincial People's Committee and organized by the Department of Tourism in collaboration with LAATA Vietnam Limited Liability Company, with the participation of Hue Vietnam Organic Company Limited, Vietjet Aviation Joint Stock Company, and several other businesses from both within and outside the province.

Opening of the Hue Lotus Festival 2023 – Lotus Beautifies Hue
Discover the royal cuisine of Hue from Hue Lotus

After two previous festivals in 2018 (themed "The Legend of a Flower") and 2022 (themed "Lotus - Essence of Heaven and Earth"), the Hue Lotus Festival 2023 with the theme "Lotus Beautifies Hue" will be held at Tinh Tam Lake for three days, from June 23rd to June 25th.

Discover the royal cuisine of Hue from Hue Lotus
Return to top