Joining hands to add green to the country
Updated: 6/18/2015 1:06:53 PM GMT + 7
Toroidal green roof is vegetable garden in Farming Kindergarten (Dong Nai) by Vo Trong Nghia architectural Company - Photo credit: OKI HIROYUKI
Toroidal green roof is vegetable garden in Farming Kindergarten (Dong Nai) by Vo Trong Nghia architectural Company - Photo credit: OKI HIROYUKI
While politicians are discussing climate change day and night, each citizen must take specific action to contribute to creating a piece of green for the country, so that the world will have to admire a green Vietnam.

Naysayers may say there is no time to spare for growing trees as people are too busy earning money. But it is not really difficult -- everyone, whether successful businesspeople or those struggling to make ends meet, only needs to show their soul to nature, or give each other pots of trees as gifts.

And is it really impossible for biologists to spare some time to prepare brochures to recommend the public as to what kinds of trees should be planted, and how to take care of them?

A colorful and green country

When I was studying in South Korea, a professor once told the class that green and light is the standard for evaluating a country. I did not understand why these two factors matter until I was about to arrive in Ho Chi Minh City from Incheon airport.

Ho Chi Minh City and Seoul have many things in common, such as the high-rises and streets full of vehicles, if viewed from above. However, the green that can be found between the blocks of concrete and steel is different. Without the rivers and areas that have yet to be urbanized, Ho Chi Minh City might have contained only dark colors, whereas the city of the country of kimchi is full of green from its trees.

And I expect Vietnam to be green and colorful with a peaceful climate in the next 20 years: rows of trees and lawns will be seen along the streets and there will be bright flowers at corners across the city. People will be walking under trees full of fruit, and every family will have clean and fresh fruit at meals. And there will never be any floods, as the city is protected by forests.

Kids will then be educated to treasure each seed of life, to keep the air fresh and clean and to live with nature. Then there will be no fights on the streets over small collisions, as how would people get angry amid a place full of green? Parents will know their children better when they plant a tree together. The youth will live ‘slower’ to savor when the trees change their leaves amid the fall.

Sweet fruit from a generation that grows trees

This is not a romantic dream - we will really achieve what we expect if we know what to do and carry out the plan step by step to realize this bright dream.

I do not opt for the law or any change at a macro level. I choose to start by encouraging people who share the idea that growing trees is useful and they can be benefited by the action they take.

First, these are young mothers and kids who will be born this year. Give these newborns pots of flowers as gifts to celebrate the day they enter the world, or grow a tree for them at the nearest park on their birthday.

On Internet forums, mothers will share experiences in raising their kids and growing trees, and showcase their achievements – photos that show the little angels in their gardens full of trees and flowers.

When the kids begin going to school, teachers should ask them to take care of green seeds as exercises, so that the children know how the trees grow up and what their benefits are. Kids are today the center of families, so such exercises will surely attract help from other members, from parents to grandparents, and even the housemaids.

Instead of raising ‘virtual pets’ in computer games, growing a real tree will be a bridge that connects everyone. And I believe there will be fewer complaints that kids have nothing to entertain themselves besides online games then.

Children who know how to take care of every leaf and bud of a tree will stand away from violence. And this will be the motivation for young mothers to grow trees.

Next, I want to encourage the youth to grow trees. Young people always love beautiful things and deep inside, they tend to turn for nature. Isn’t a wall full of vines or a fence filled with wild flowers more beautiful than a boring block of concrete?

How happy it will be when a man gives his beloved one a tree pot, and it will be more romantic if the two start a relationship by sharing knowledge in taking care of trees.

And you yourself will soon realize that sparing some time to grow a tree will bring freshness to your soul. Besides, young people are members of many unions, societies and campaigns. Whenever one member of these organizations raises the idea of growing trees to beautify their neighborhoods, everyone will certainly take part.

By doing just that, everywhere will be full of trees and flowers, people will fill every space they find with a suitable tree. Humans will see trees as their intimates, or a standard to evaluate one another in terms of soul and lifestyle.

With such a background, this generation will not destroy forests, but protect them instead. They will study factors that affect life, and there will be no violent individuals who are willing to be cruel to their fellows.

In the next 20 years, the tree growers today will prepare policies to develop their country peacefully and sustainably. Isn’t it something the entire humankind is looking forward?

SONG PHUONG, 37, Dong Nai

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