January – A Year in Ogose Tear Garden, Japan


Mr. Ogose Haruo, the owner of the tea plantation, told me about the work he does at the Tea garden throughout the year.


Developing Their Natural Life Force.

The work I do in January is mostly maintenance work in the tea fields. During the winter, wild boars make holes in the ground in order to eat worms and insects. Also, farm roads sometimes collapse.

Spiny wild strawberry-type weeds, which do not die even in winter, grow underground stems.

I pull out these weeds by hand, crawling on all fours and looking at the ground carefully.

A hole made by a wild boar in a tea garden
A hole made by a wild boar.

In my many years of making tea, I have noticed that there are some grasses that are better to remove and some that are better not to remove. Certain spiny weeds, if left unchecked, will multiply and grow larger than the tea tree.

Weeds with vines and thorns are also troublesome.

Yams, crowberries, etc. are also carefully removed from the soil during the winter.

Vine grass growing in a tea field
Vine grass growing in a tea field

On the other hand, grasses that do not need to be removed are those that do not grow large and those that grow in the spring. Some grasses naturally shrivel up in the summer, and these grasses make good compost. I do not remove grasses that do not need to be removed, such as short grasses, but remove grasses that are harmful to the growth of tea.

Throughout the year, I make sure that the ground of the field itself is not exposed. If the ground is exposed, rain can cause the soil to flow away from the field. Also, if people or animals step on it, the soil will become hard. Leaving the short grasses unattended will keep the field with soft soil.

When I started growing tea, there was no model in Shumei natural agricultural method, so I had to do everything by hand. The general farming method for tea production requires the use of fertilizer, which was not helpful for my tea production. For more than 20 years, I have been cultivating tea plants with the aim of developing their natural life force.

Let's spread the wonderfulness of tea and make the world a better place😉
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