BTO- Phuoc The commune is among the largest vinicultural regions in Tuy Phong district. For a long time, many farmer households in Phuoc The and Phu Lac communes have grown vine commercially as a key crop plant. Previously, grapevines flourished on this dry region with abundant in wind and sunshine, helped viniculturists escape from poverty and get well-off. But a few years later, they abandoned it. In the recent years, vineyards have been gradually revived thanks to stable price and advanced cultivation techniques.
According to Mr. Dang Ngoc Long- Chairman of Phuoc The commune People’s Committee, the whole commune has a total area under grapevines of 30 hectares, including 6 hectares of newly-planted vines in 2013. Soil for growing grapevines has been conversed from mound soil, which was previously utilized for rice, vegetable or fruit cultivation without economic efficiency. Local farmers, who are relatively clear-headed, recognize that the market demand for this kind of fruit as a table fruit is increasing rapidly, especially in Lunar New Year. In addition, the grape productivity of grape has improved in comparison with the previous years (15-20 tonnes per hectare) thanks to good caring in accordance with technical process. Presently, some viniculturist in Phuoc The begin harvesting and selling vines to middlemen at the price of 10,000 dong/kg so that the fruit will be transported to Northern provinces.
Experienced viniculturists in Phuoc The shared that Cardinal grape variety (red grape) has been planted widely and become popular here because it has a number of advantages such as: fresh appearance, easy to transport, fast growth, high yield potential and extensive shelf life (6 years). This grape variety has short growing duration so it can be harvested after 4 months of growing and 3 harvests per year can be possible. This means that the investment costs for care and fertilizers are quite high. Vineyards are usually irrigated regularly in dry season, especially, with sandy soil, it is shorter, usually about 5-7 days schedule. When grapevines leaf, flower and bear fruit, irrigation interval must be 3-5 days.
Mr. Phuong Hiep (Group 1- Dai Hoa hamlet), who has cultivated 3 perches of grapevines said that his family has a 10 year-experience of grape growing. According to him, grapevine brings growers higher economic effectiveness than the paddy does. In 2012 only, they earned nearly VND 60 million after conducting all costs. However, grapes are infected by several diseases such as: pest, hoppers, soft scales, red spider mites, aphalara itadori, manica testulalis, scirpophaga incertulas walker, powdery mildew, rust disease (uromyces appendiculatus). For this reason, it’s necessary to take care of grapevine trellises frequently in order to detect diseases, tackle the problems and prevent the spread of diseases. For example, downy mildew disease caused by Plasmopara viticolafungus often attacks strongly in high humidity and windless environment. Initially, it occurs on the surface of the leaf, then spreads out and causes serious damage on the vine’s stems, buds, flowers and fruit clusters. To control the pest, Mr. Hiep uses a number of chemicals such as: copper sulphate, lime (bordeaux mixture), Ridomil MZ 58WP 0.5%, Tilt 250 EC, and Baycor 300 EC to spray carefully and repeatedly when the disease emerges (especially in rainy season lasting from October to December).
The restoration of viniculture has helped diversify crops structure in Tuy Phong. However, local farmers have a great need for more training courses on grape cultivation techniques to improve planting and caring skills, increase productivity and prevent harmful pests so that grape growers can get stable income.
Phuong Lan (Source: Binh Thuan newspaper)