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Rice Photo Gallery III  

Kazuko Tomiyama's 'Rice in Japan' Calendar (2004)

Owarabi rice terraces

(Yamanobe Town, Yamagata Prefecture)

Making the slope look steeper that it is, ascending rice stooks let the harvest dry naturally in the sun. At Owarabi, this amazing sight of rice stooks is presented by eleven farm households who uncomplainingly stick to the time-honored ways of producing rice.

Here on the fringe of Yamagata City, at 400 m above sea level, these terraced paddy fields were opened during the Meiji Period. They are listed among the top hundred terraced fields in Japan and are now subsidized by the local government.  

Growing rice in these fields stepped from highland slopes is a challenge. Rather, the area is better known for edible wild plants and buckwheat. Now, through a terrace owner and buckwheat owner system, families in Machida City, Tokyo have also started to support the farmers.

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