(Construction) – According to the concept of Vietnamese, the five-fruit tray on Lunar New Year consists of five fruits with five different colors, symbolizing the wishes to have five blessings. The meaning of the five blessings includes: wealth, luxury, long life, health, and peace.
What does the five-fruit tray mean?
According to the traditional custom of the Vietnamese people, on the altar of every family, there is a tray of five fruits to offer to ancestors. Whether rich or poor, sophisticated or simple, almost every family has a five-fruit tray because no one does not wish for a lucky and peaceful year during the Lunar New Year.
Currently, the fruits are quite diverse and people are not too rigid “five fruits” anymore, so they can be increased to nine or ten fruits… But no matter how many fruits are displayed, people still call it the five-fruit tray.
If the family is well-off, the five-fruit tray can include many types of expensive, imported goods, even up to tens of millions of Vietnamese Dong. However, if it is simple, the family can also arrange all 5 kinds of modest fruits. Even with just a few thousands, there are all kinds of needs for a five-fruit tray of equally beautiful colors.
Three-region five-fruit tray
It is called a five-fruit tray, but in the culture in each of the North, Central and South regions, there are different types of fruits and layout. Each fruit has its own meaning, depending on the concept of each region, even each family has different opinions. There is no right or wrong, just a general meaning to convey the wishes of the owner.
However, most regions with their own specific fruits and cultures should choose different fruits to display the five-fruit tray as follows:
Northern Five Fruit Tray
Homeowners born and raised in the North display a tray of five fruits according to the theory of five elements in Eastern culture. Therefore, the five-fruit tray must be mixed in 5 corresponding colors: white, blue, black, red, and yellow.
Characteristics of the five-fruit tray in the North (illustration)
Five-fruit tray in the North with 5 kinds of fruit including: banana, grapefruit, peach… However, today they are not too important, more or less, homeowners today often buy all kinds of fruits according to the meaning and arrange them alternately to be beautiful.
The traditional arrangement of fruit trays of the Northern people always has a bunch of green bananas at the bottom. That bunch of bananas is the support for all other fruits. The slightly curved shape of a bunch of bananas embracing other fruits carries the meaning of care and happy reunion. In addition, a bunch of bananas will include many bananas that also represent fertility, full of descendants. In the middle is a grapefruit, surrounded by other fruits, such as tangerines, persimmons, etc.
Central Five Fruit Tray
The Central region has a harsh climate, it often suffers from storms, floods, droughts, plus the land is barren, so there are few fruit. With constant worries, people in the Central region are therefore not dominated by the form of the five-fruit tray. However, the meaning of the five-fruit tray displayed on Tet holiday of the Central people is also very interested. They also respectfully offered the five-fruit tray to the altar in their ability.
Central Five Fruit Tray
The fruits commonly found in the five-fruit tray in the Central region are: dragon fruit, banana, pineapple, coconut, orange, watermelon… They even have something in their garden that they bring to the five-fruit tray. In some years of severe crop failure, heavy damage due to storms and floods, people in the Central region even cut flowers in their gardens instead of five-fruit trays.
Southern five-fruit tray
Unlike the central region, the five-fruit sprouts in the South are quite abundant, people here often choose five types of fruit including coconut, papaya, and mango to display the five-fruit tray. The five-fruit tray of the Southern people even has a base of pineapples showing stability, wishing that the children and grandchildren will fill the house.
Southern five-fruit tray (illustration photo)
Most families often display a pair of red and green watermelons at the altar, symbolizing the loyalty of the people of the South.
The layout of the five-fruit tray of the Southern people also requires harmony and balance. They usually display large, heavy and green fruits at the bottom, while small, ripe fruits are displayed on top.
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