On May 7th, the director Ding Bing taught farmers from Tailai his experience in growing new types of cold-weather Chrysanthemum in the Flowers and Bioengineering Institute, College of Life Sciences. “If this flower can grow in Tailai, the economic benefits will be very impressive,” said Zhang Shuku, Chenghong village Party branch secretary, Tailai county. The flower, which gave Zhang Shuku huge confidence, was a kind of chrysanthemum that can bloom in cold regions. This type of chrysanthemum is a direct result of research at NEFU.
Recently, China has been implementing the “beautiful village” project. Environmental greening and colorization are important indicators of the construction of beautiful villages. Tailai, located in the city of Qiqihar, is a place with alpine and barren land. They can only use flowers like petunias, tagetes erecta, and so on for greening and colorization projects. “The profit is around 1 mao per flower when plant grass flowers, ” said Qian Cheng, the first secretary of Chenghong village.
Tailai is the targeted poor county for NEFU. NEFU has organized expert groups to do research in Tailai for several times, in order to help tackle its real difficulties. In 2016, NEFU and Tailai launched 23 programs in 4 major categories such as training, financing, planning, and industrialization of science and technology, which were suitable for Tailai. Cold region chrysanthemum is one of these programs.
According to Li Yuhua, dean of the College of Life Sciences, the cold region chrysanthemums are able to bloom from early Au gust to November, which can brighten the season when other flowers fall. After 15 years of researching, NEFU currently owns more than 80 new types of chrysanthemums, including yellow, pink, purple, white and 3 other colors. These chrysanthemums not only fill in the blanks of urban flowers types, but also shined brilliantly in China-Russia Expo in mid-Oct, 2015. In 2016, Nangang District Gardening Bureau signed a contract with NEFU to introduce tens of thousands of cold region chrysanthemums, and the number will be doubled in 2017.
Gardening departments across China are asking for cold region chrysanthemums from NEFU since this flower has gone viral. However, because of the limitation of research area at NEFU, the breeding capacity of chrysanthemums is far short of meeting the market demands. Therefore, NEFU has decided to teach farmers from Tailai to plant cold region chrysanthemums. As Li Yuhua says, on one hand, our research achievement can be put into market in this way. On the other hand, this can help Tailai gets out of poverty. It is a win-win project.”
Tailai county has opened up fields to plant cold region chrysanthemums in Hongcheng village and Dong fang hong forest field, where 3,000 cold region chrysanthemums will be planted in 2017. In addition, NEFU has elaborately selected 11 types of chrysanthemums (e.g. Ziyan, Jinqiu, Xiaguang) that can grow in saline and sandy land. These chrysanthemums will be provided to the farmers for free.
In order to make sure cold region chrysanthemums can grow in Tailai, expert Ding Bing thoroughly taught the farmers the method of planting: “Each flower must be planted every 50cm. You need to water the soil before planting each flower, and then cover the root with the soil. Each flower needs to be pinched timely after planting for 10 days. Water the flower as soon as the leaves wither. Fields must be ditched to prevent the heavy rain from flooding the flowers.” Ding Bing also gave answers to the questions pointed by farmers, such as how to repel insects, how to fertilize, and how to prepare furrows, etc. He said: “we will track the entire process of plantation. No matter what challenges you meet, such as spotted leaves or discoloration, you can contact us at any time.” “We are learning how to plant cold region chrysanthemums now. We will come to learn how to breed them in October. Our prosperous days will come when cold region chrysanthemums grow and bloom in Tailai,” said Zhang Shuku with hope and confidence.