Revealing all the things you need to know about apricot Flowers

Apricot Flowers is a familiar flower species to the people of Vietnam. It carries both a familiar and simple beauty, as well as an elegant and noble appearance. Learn more about this flower through the information below.

Understanding the Apricot Flower

Names and Distribution

Apricot flowers, golden apricot trees, hoang mai, and huynh mai are all common names for the apricot flower. The English name for this tree is Apricot Flowers, and its scientific name is Ochna integerrima. Apricot flowers belong to the flowering plant species, specifically the Ochna genus and the Ochnaceae family. Apricot flowers are also favored for display during the Lunar New Year, alongside other flowers like cherry blossoms and roses….

Apricot Flowers
Apricot Flowers

Apricot flowers are mainly distributed in the Truong Son range, in the central and southern provinces of Vietnam, including Quang Nam, Da Nang, and Khanh Hoa. They are also found along the Mekong Delta and in some areas of the highlands. Apricot flowers have a more delicate and elegant yellow color compared to chrysanthemums.


The apricot flower originated from a wild tree in China nearly 3000 years ago. Our ancestors discovered it while reclaiming land in the southern region. They found the flowers beautiful and blooming during the Lunar New Year, similar to cherry blossoms, so they brought the trees back for display. Over time, the apricot flower became one of the iconic flowers for the Vietnamese Lunar New Year.

Tree Characteristics


Apricot trees have deep and wide-spreading clustered roots, which can penetrate the ground up to 2 to 3 meters. The roots of apricot flowers can develop from the trunk and seeds of the tree.


The trunk of the apricot tree is woody, large, and gnarled. When planted in pots, the tree’s trunk typically reaches an average height of 1 to 1.5 meters. In natural environments, the trunk of the apricot tree can grow up to 10 to 20 meters tall.

Trunk of Apricot Tree
Trunk of Apricot Tree


Apricot trees have single leaves that grow in an alternating pattern. The leaf blades are oval-shaped, small, and slightly yellowish.


Apricot flowers are hermaphroditic, with delicate petals clustered mainly in the leaf axils. The flower buds are slightly swollen on the upper side, with silk covering on the outside. When blooming, the silk covering bursts open, revealing a small cluster of flowers inside. Typically, apricot flowers wither after 3 days of blooming. Unlike other types of flowers, apricot flowers come in various colors, such as yellow, white, or white mixed with pink. Each color evokes different emotions in people. Apricot flowers have a gentle and refreshing fragrance, not as strong as the scent of milk flowers.

Classification of Apricot Flowers

Currently, there are a total of 24 types of apricot flowers worldwide, with 13 common types in Vietnam.

Five-Petal Yellow Apricot Flowers

This is a type of apricot flower that is widely grown in the southern region of Vietnam. The flower petals are deep yellow, and the pedicels are slightly long. When blooming, the flowers have five small petals, which are relatively sparse compared to other apricot varieties. Five-petal yellow apricot flowers have a natural, gentle, and pleasing fragrance that captivates anyone entering this space.

Five-Petal Yellow Apricot Flowers

Wild Apricot

This type of apricot has a similar appearance to the five-petal apricot, but the color of the petals is lighter and there are more petals. On average, a wild apricot flower has 12 to 18 petals. Wild apricots mainly live in rocky and arid mountainous areas. They primarily obtain water from underground streams. Therefore, they have extremely deep and strong roots.

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Cave Apricot, Sparrow Apricot

Cave apricot and sparrow apricot are apricot varieties that mainly grow in white sand areas or coastal regions. These apricot trees have densely clustered flowers and a round and smooth trunk. In the case of flowers with five petals, they are called sparrow apricots, while those with more petals are called cave apricots. In Vietnam, cave apricots and sparrow apricots are distributed mainly in the Central and Southern regions, with the highest concentration in Quang Binh and Quang Tri.

Cluster Apricot

Cluster apricot is also a type of wild apricot with a thick and wide trunk and dense foliage. It is called cluster apricot because the flowers bloom in large clusters. In the Vietnamese dictionary, “chuy” means cluster or community. The leaves of the cluster apricot are large, glossy green, and sharply toothed.

Grouped Apricot, Tỳ Bà Apricot, Royal Apricot

All three names refer to a type of apricot with a sturdy trunk and many knots on the branches. Grouped apricots are parasitic on large old trees. However, their roots not only penetrate into the host trunk but also go deep into the ground. They obtain nutrients from both the soil and the host tree, making them highly resilient. Grouped apricots grow densely and abundantly on tree branches, creating a charming and impressive beauty.Cluster Apricot Tree

Châu Apricot (Buffalo Apricot)

Châu apricot has the largest leaf size among all apricot varieties in Vietnam. The diameter of its flower petals can reach up to 5cm with proper care. In the northern region, it is called buffalo apricot, while in the southern region, it is called châu apricot.

Aromatic Apricot, Fragrant Apricot

Aromatic apricot and fragrant apricot are common names for a variety of apricot with the most distinct fragrance among all apricot flowers. They also have five petals like yellow apricots, but the fragrance is stronger and more intense. In the northern region, it is called fragrant apricot. In Bến Tre, it is called fragrant apricot. In Huế, because this flower is grown in the imperial city and highly favored by kings, it is called ngự apricot.

Four Seasons Apricot

Four Seasons Apricot is a distinctive apricot variety in the southern region of Vietnam. Unlike other apricot varieties, the flowers wither and only the pistil remains after blooming. Four Seasons Apricot reveals a prominent flower center with three small black seeds. The flower center also consists of five round and equal petals like yellow apricot flowers, making them highly favored. The name Four Seasons Apricot (mai Tứ Quý) originates from its ability to bloom throughout the year. Besides the name Four Seasons Apricot, it is also called Double Blossom Apricot because it blooms twice.

Four Seasons Apricot Flowers

Sharp Apricot

Sharp apricot is a variety of apricot with long and pointed petals. The leaves of the tree are also long and pointed like the flowers. The tree trunk is relatively large and sturdy.

Willow Apricot

Willow apricot is a variety of apricot with leaves and flower petals hanging downward like willow branches. The leaves and petals of this variety are relatively small and narrow. When blooming, there are fewer flowers on the branches, and they appear sparse.

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Vĩnh Hảo Apricot

Vĩnh Hảo apricot is a species of apricot originating from Vĩnh Hảo commune, Tuy Phong district, Bình Thuận province. This variety has large flowers, small leaves, a rigid stem, and a long blooming period.

Cà Ná Apricot

Similar to Vĩnh Hảo apricot, Cà Ná apricot is named after its place of origin, the coastal area of Cà Ná in Ninh Thuận. It has small, weak, and brittle stems. The leaves are oval-shaped with serrated edges. Cà Ná apricot flowers are relatively small and light yellow in color.

Hybrid Apricot

Hybrid apricot is a variety created by crossbreeding different apricot types. Hybrid apricots usually have many eye-catching petals of various colors. They are created by grafting branches of different apricot varieties together. They have a unique and distinct appearance, but they are quite challenging to grow and care for.

Hybrid Apricot Flowers

Uses and Meanings of Apricot Flowers


In Space and Landscaping

Apricot flowers bloom at the end of winter and the beginning of spring, coinciding with the Vietnamese Lunar New Year (Tết Nguyên Đán). Therefore, they bring a sentimental and warm beauty to the spaces they occupy. The gentle fragrance of apricot flowers helps people relieve stress and adds excitement to the start of a new year.

In Medicine

Apricot flowers have a mild bitter taste, slightly sweet, and a warm nature. They have the effect of resolving phlegm, promoting digestion, and dispersing stagnation. Similar to blue peas, apricot flowers are often used to treat conditions such as high fever, cough, sore throat, chest congestion, dizziness, or loss of appetite. Ancient medical texts also mention many special uses of this flower.
According to scientific research, apricot flowers contain compounds such as Cineole, Linalool, Farnesol, Borneol, Benzyl alcohol, Terpineol, Indole, etc. These active ingredients promote the detoxification process of the excretory system, thus protecting the liver and gallbladder. Moreover, these compounds also have inhibitory effects on the formation of certain bacteria that cause intestinal diseases, such as Salmonella, E. coli, or Shigella.

Medical Benefits of Apricot Flowers

Apricot flowers have a slight bitter taste, a hint of sweetness, warm nature, and the ability to resolve phlegm and improve digestion

In Cuisine

Few people know that apricot flowers can be used as an ingredient to create delicious and nutritious dishes. The petals of apricot flowers can be used to make sweet cakes or cooked with goat meat, pork, carp, shiitake mushrooms, etc., to create flavorful dishes that are beneficial for health.


Since ancient times, apricot flowers have been known as precious flowers and are part of the quartet of auspicious flowers: pine, chrysanthemum, bamboo, and apricot. They symbolize wealth, prosperity, and abundance. Especially with their strong vitality, blooming in harsh and cold weather, apricot flowers are also a symbol of determination and resilience. The bright color of apricot petals also energizes people, creating a positive outlook and love for life.

Planting and Caring for Apricot Flowers

Propagation of Apricot Flowers

As mentioned above, apricot trees can be propagated by both cuttings and seeds. Therefore, you can choose one of these methods to propagate apricot flowers. If propagating through cuttings, select old branches that are free from pests and diseases and have good vitality. If propagating through seeds, choose mature and viable seeds. Before planting, soak the seeds in water to stimulate germination, then sow them in moist soil.

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Soil for Planting Apricot Trees

For apricot trees planted in gardens or natural environments, the best soil is light, fertile soil with good nutrients. It is important to avoid acidic or alkaline soil or soil containing chemicals for planting apricot trees. For apricot trees planted in pots, you can use similar soil to garden soil as mentioned above. However, it is recommended to mix 20 to 30% organic fertilizer with the soil to ensure sufficient nutrients for the plant’s development.

Soil for Planting Apricot Trees

Light and Temperature

Apricot trees are relatively easy to grow and care for, so you don’t need to pay too much attention to light and temperature. However, ensure that the trees are exposed to daily sunlight, as apricot trees thrive in bright conditions.

Watering Regime

Apricot trees prefer moist conditions but cannot tolerate waterlogging, so it’s important to moderate the amount of water during each watering session. If planting trees in the garden, choose elevated, well-drained, and ventilated areas. If planting in pots, create small drainage holes at the bottom to prevent waterlogging and plant death.


For apricot trees planted in the garden, a higher intensity and quantity of fertilizers are needed compared to those planted in pots. For garden apricots, choose organic fertilizers that have been decomposed for 5 to 10 days as a basal dressing. Additionally, use chemical fertilizers such as NPK and buffalo manure to promote growth.
For apricot trees planted in pots, a single application of fertilizer at the time of planting is sufficient. When applying fertilizer, create a trench 5 to 10 cm away from the main roots of the pot. Applying fertilizer directly to the roots can cause damage and breakage.

Additional Information

1. Are apricot trees toxic?

According to modern medical research and historical records from traditional medicine practitioners, apricot trees, including their sap, trunk, leaves, and flowers, are completely non-toxic. Therefore, there is no need to worry about any adverse effects when using this plant.

Are Apricot Trees Toxic Apricot trees are completely non-toxic

2. How long do apricot trees live?

Apricot trees are perennial plants that are easy to grow and develop, so they have a relatively long lifespan. In nature, apricot trees have been recorded to live for hundreds of years. Therefore, with proper care, apricot trees can live for a long time, typically ranging from several years to several decades.
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