Hanoi farmer creates 'Franken-fruit trees' for Tet

By Ngoc Thanh   January 15, 2017 | 12:37 pm GMT+7

The capital farmer grafted ten different buds onto a single potted root system.

Lunar New Year (also called Tet in Vietnam) is just two weeks away.

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Farmer Le Duc Giap, 63, owns an orchard in Hanoi's Thanh Oai District that contains hundreds of potted trees, 200 of which are grapefruit trees grafted with branches that yield nine different kinds of citrus.

"Grafting 10 kind of fruit onto a single tree requires one to understand them all very well. Each type of fruit has a different window of flowering and fruiting so it requires some calculation," said Giap.

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Giap chose to build his Franken-fruit trees on Dien rootstock because the northern subtropical citrus has such a big trunk and strong root system. Next, he carefully grafted buds from pomelo, orange, lemon, kumquat and mandarin trees. Each Franken-fruit tree ranges from VND1.5 to 10 million ($66.28 to $441.9).

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Giap carefully inspected each Dien tree to ensure its branches could withstand the weight of the new fruit.

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The finished Franken-fruit trees feature five to seven different colored fruit and live for three to four years. With good care, Giap said they could survive for up to 10 years.

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Trees that show both flower and fruit fetch the highest prices.

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Farmer Giap has sold about 60 percent of his Franken-fruit stock.

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As Tet approaches, Giap receives more orders each day.

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Every year, Giap's Franken-fruit trees bring thousands of dollars in profit.

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