Wang Xiuhua began planting flowers in Dounan village, Yunnan province, in 1989 after she saw other residents grow plants and sell them. Prior to that, she lived by planting vegetables, which was more labor-demanding and could only produce enough profit to feed her family.
Back then, there was no market and she had to transport the flowers to street vendors by bike. Her husband also sold their flowers in Guangzhou, capital of Guangdong province, to boost his income. Later, other villagers followed their example and gradually formed a "flower street" in Dounan subdistrict of Kunming.
In 1995, to better meet demand of both planters and customers, the local government set up the first flower market, which later evolved into today's Kunming Dounan Flower Market, Asia's largest fresh-cut flower trading market.
Wang's family continued to grow flowers and sell them in the Dounan market. In 2005, 16 years after their start, her family earned enough money to build a six-story house. She gave up planting flowers in 2013 and has been engaged with flower transportation. "Flowers have changed our lives. With the development of the flower business in our subdistrict, as long as we keep diligent, we can make a lot of money," says Wang.