Home   >   CULTURE >   Content

Yunnan rice paddies (4) Menghai: The 'spring city' of fragrant rice

Updated:2018-06-20 10:56:19   yunnangateway.com

Dubbed the “spring city” in south Yunnan’s Xishuangbanna Dai Autonomous Prefecture, Menghai County is an amazing place with a long history of fragrant rice planting. Walking along the streets here, you will find every lane is pervading with the fragrance of rice floating from the kitchens of local residents.

In the county, the Mangen Village is one of the most famous rice-planting bases. In the ancient times, rice produced in village was presented as tribute to the royal family for its high quality. The success of Manggen rice has also broken the outworn view that southern China does not produce any quality rice. 

The rice is sweet, soft, smooth, and glutinous. Locals call it Diantun 502, a type of the noted brand of Menghai fragrant rice. It is said that the Diantun 502 can only grow in three places in Yunnan, and the most favorable location is Mangen Village. 

“There is no pollution at all and our irrigation water is from two reservoirs with potable water,” said Yan Wenlang, a 42-year-old rice planter in Mangen Village, who owns fields of more than 100 mu (about 16.5 acres). 

“After harvesting in August, we raise tilapia in the fields. And by the next April or May, the tilapas will be large enough to eat,” Yan Wenlang told us. It is an entire ecosystem: The rotten rice flowers, bugs, and rice stubbles serve as food for the fish, the excrement of which becomes fertilizer for the soil.  

By Yang Xiujie and Meng Zhigang

Keywords:   Menghai fragrant rice