Abandoned Green Tea Field

Few young Japanese wish to live the life of a tea farmer in the beautiful and remote mountains of central Honshu. As a result, many farms are abandoned and left untended after the aging farmer dies or decides to retire. This tea field was likely abandoned within the last year as the shape of the plants is still distinct yet the rows are clearly overgrown and no tea has been harvested. Within another year the tea plants will likely be completely overgrown and the site barely recognizable as a tea field. I sometimes happen across such fields which have been completely reclaimed by the forest, with the only sign of man’s former presence being the distinct stone walls of the field’s terrace. After I filmed this video I wandered down the road another 100 yards to a dead end where a lovely old farm house was found. The home was modest yet full of charm and life, all of which was the doing of a spry old woman who is the home’s sole occupant. I would not have troubled the woman had she not been outside tending her garden when I passed by. She was very happy and talkative and clearly delighted to have a visitor. Her garden was lovely with a modest vegetable plot and many potted plants and assorted bonsai. Water from a nearby stream trickled through pipes to fill a small carp pond. And a small cemetery plot could be seen above her home which is often a sign that the family has been living in this spot for a very long time. I was a bit uncomfortable as I feared I was intruding so I

15 thoughts on “Abandoned Green Tea Field

  1. Wow that was sad now you brought me down .Yea well most like the modern life of Tokyo I guess the flash to noise the attention .I guess mainly the money also has a big part in it also .

  2. It’s suprising it wasn’t sold off to another family or something, really. Or rather, suprising a few of the younger people haven’t stepped in, or that no company has. Living in the midwest, it’s hard for me to understand a field going untended 😉 ~Kat

  3. Hi Kat, It’s a sad thing that there really is nobody around who is interested in taking over these farms. I see so many empty homes and fields and am struck by the very real absence of young adults or children in these small mountain communities. It just seems that most modern Japanese would prefer to live in the city and are not interested in taking over the family farm. -Kurt

  4. I visted your ebay page, some very good stuff there… however, I can’t seem to find a Japanese GASA, or the straw peasant/monk hats… it would be really cool if you could put some on there, I think myself and others would be most appreciative.
    Thanks, and 5/5 for the green tea vid, I’m drinking some right now!! lol PEACE.

  5. What a pity!. Every body runs towards the big cities looking for a dream and leaving the real life behind them.
    I wouldn’t mind to leave the Canary Islands and go to live in rural Japan an work as a green tea farmer. But I imagine the population hasn’t decline so much yet, as for letting foreigners in.

    A bit sad, but reality some times is sad!.
    good video.

  6. Hi remesjim, If you are interested in what life is like for foreigners living in the Japanese countryside then I would like to recommend a terrific discussion thread called “Countryside Living” which can be found on the GaijinPot website. Simply search for “GaijinPot” on Google and then go to the “forums” tab and look for the “countryside living” thread by KenElwood. Great stuff! -Kurt

  7. If it was the last harvest why wasn’t neighboring neat tea field not cut as well?

    ah huh, I’m a descendant of Dr Sherlock Holmes you see..

  8. Hello fox20012, Thank you for viewing and commenting. This particular area is in the mountains surrounding the Japan Southern Alps which are south of Mt. Fuji. The closest city is Shizuoka which is roughly a 45 minute drive from this valley. -Kurt 🙂

  9. This is so lovely, the nature is absolutely remarkable. I have watched every video of yours now. I suppose you have been to Japan quite a while now.
    I’m actually studying to be a teacher in Japan. In high school now, have read Japanese courses for three years (It’s hard!) and going to continue for 2 more years. Watching these videos really gave me inspiration to continue.

    I mean, I knew it was beautiful but this is amazing. So thanks mate!

  10. Thank you for your kind and encouraging words. I admire your plans to come to Japan and work as a school teacher. I currently work for a Japanese elementary school and this work is the most rewarding I have ever enjoyed. Thanks again and good luck with your plans! -Kurt 🙂

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