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Luoyang kicks off 32nd annual peony festival

2014-04-11 16:32 CNTV Web Editor: Li Yan


Spring has sprung and Luoyang has burst into color. For the thirty-second year, the city in central China's Henan province, is hosting a festival celebrating the peony, China's national flower.

It's happened again, right on schedule. Peonies have burst into bloom all across Luoyang. Millions of tourists, green-thumb gardeners and peony lovers are flocking to the city where the vast blooms of dazzling peony attacks the senses.

Luoyang was the capital of 13 Chinese dynasties. Cultivating and nurturing the peony has been a favorite pastime of locals for more than 1,500 years.

"The city started to grow peonies in the Sui and Tang dynasties, thousands of years ago. This is one of the best places for the flowers to grow, because of the special climate and soil condition," said Ma Xiaojie, peony expert of Luoyang Wangcheng Park.

This year's peony festival opened on Thursday and it will last for a month. Over 1000 species of peonies are on show throughout the city.

The festival also features a photography contests and talent shows.

It's not only the flowers that have earned Luoyang fame… the city has encouraged various crafts and products related to the peony that have helped serve the local economy.

Peony porcelain is one such craft. It perfectly combines peony design with traditional porcelain crafts; two of the most distinctive icons of China.

Each step of the process requires strict standards and creativity. Forming, decorating, glazing and firing ceramic wares with an extreme care.

"It's an extremely delicate job. So far as I know, we are the only company in China that makes peony porcelains. Our sales volume can reach at least 30 thousand yuan every year, which is a great contribution to the local economy. Our next step is to bring this uniquely Chinese crafts to the world," said Jia Xiaoli, vice president of Luoyang Peony Porcelain Co.

With the peony symbolizing riches and honor, it's little wonder the flower has become ubiquitous. It can be found on textiles, silk scarves and in food and tea.

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