Yuyama district lies along the western bank of the Abe River in Shizuoka City.
There is barely enough land to cultivate under the steep slopes of the surrounding mountains, but it means plenty of good water all day long whatever the weather.
All this water still needs to be funneled into the right patterns between the many plots, regularly maintained and re-inforced with stone and concrete, otherwise the water will turn into a plague in rainy weather carrying off everything on its way to the Abe River.
Once again my good friend Mrs. Natsuko Koyanagi was on hand to help me talk with shy farmers. Whereas an unknown foreign would have some difficulty engaging in a conversation on his own with locals, a local celebrity makes things a lot easier!
Looking forward to the next cucumber crop!
Mr. Toshihiro Mochizuki and his wife, Akiko, are the 4th generation looking after this garden spreading over 200 tsubo (multiply by 2.3 to convert into square metres!).
Red shiso! Love their juices!
Unfortunately, it could be the end of that particular line because their children are not tempted to follow their vocation in spite of their parents’ enthusiasm.
Now, what might be these?
Myoga ginger! No way I could have guessed they were hidden under all these leaves!
It is a pity that these farmers (many in the region are in the same predicament) cannot convince (they even discourage their siblings in many cases) their children to take on farming and agriculture.
The local government have finally understood the situation and are taking measures to attract young people back to farming.
Green asparaguses, but not edible any more!
The Mochizukis were formerly growing rice and green tea only. Now they grow more than 20 varieties of vegetables (10% are ending on their own table) atop of rice. They stopped growing green tea which is strenuous business on slopes that are almost vertical.
Now, what can be this vegetable/tuber? I forgot to ask, silly me! Anyone knows?
Like many farmers, they buy their fertilizers from the local Farmers Association Cooperative and sell most of their produce at the Miwa Agriroad (JA) Market nearby (Abeguchi) that I have already mentioned.
Corn! Love these!
I personally enjoy talking and learning from these people of the land. You never know. What would happen if we suddenly all had to grow our food?
I forgot to ask about these, too! Please help me!LOL
Have you ever heard of Ry Cooder’s Taxes On The Farmer Feeds Us All?
….The farmer is the man who feeds us all…
A case in point!
Mochizukis’ Garden & Farm
Shizuoka City, Aoi Ku, Yuyama, 826
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