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Tuesday, June 18, 2024

Craft village in sedge harvest season

Photo by Hoang Le

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In the heart of Phong Dien District, Thua Thien Hue Province, lies the picturesque village of Pho Trach, where every third lunar month marks the bustling harvest season of cỏ bàng (Lepironia) — a type of sedge. Local villagers engage in the traditional practice of harvesting these lush green sedges, soaking them in water, and drying them under the sun to craft various handmade products.

Located about 50 kilometers north of downtown Hue City, with its roots tracing back to the mid-15th century, Pho Trach sedge mat weaving craft village has been a beacon of artisanal tradition. Since its inception, the residents of Pho Trach have relied on farming and sedge mat weaving as their primary means of subsistence.

The process is labor-intensive and requires meticulous care. Initially, villagers select deepwater paddy fields that remain flooded year-round to cultivate these grass-like plants during the first two months of the year. After more than a year of nurturing, the sedges are ready for harvest, destined to be transformed into mats and other craft products highly sought after by consumers. These products are prized for their durability and eco-friendliness, contributing to the prosperity of the local community.

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