PURPLES, BLUES AND YELLOW – HANOI’S FLOWERING MONTHS OF NOVEMBER AND DECEMBER
People around the world love flowers. The Vietnamese are no exception and this passion is particularly strong in Hanoi. While the city has four seasons – spring, summer, autumn and winter – uniquely Hanoi ‘celebrates’ 12 flower seasons, each with a significant flower. The lotus is of course the symbolic flower of Vietnam, together with the milk flower, but many other flowers are equally important to Hanoians, especially when it comes to decorating people’s homes.
The 12 months of flowers:
January – peach blossom
February – orchid tree flower (ban)
March – sua flower and bombax flower
April – lily May – phoenix and banaba flowers
June (and summer) – lotus July – sau and sunflowers
August – xoan flower
September/October – milk flower (hoa sua)
October – daisies
November – forget-me-nots and heather (thach thao)
December- mustard flower (cai vang)
Purples and blues are the colors of November. This is season of forget-me-nots and heather. The former, also known as the Myosotis flower, which means mouse’s ear in Greek, is a tiny flowering plant. It symbolizes true, undying love and fidelity, remembrance after death, memories and connections that last through time. Heather (thach thao in Vietnamese) originated in Italy. Traditional purple heather represents admiration, solitude and beauty, while the pink variety symbolizes good luck.
Yellow comes to Hanoi in December with the vibrant yellow mustard flower (cai vang in Vietnamese). It carpets gardens and provides colorful bouquets for brides at this time of year. Fields on the outskirts of Hanoi provide a fabulous display of color to attract locals and visitors alike.