Joyo is a beautiful town in the Fukuoka prefecture with pure nature and lushly green. However even this city suffers from depopulation and the amount of vacant houses is increasing year by year. Since also the unused agricultural fields are becoming more and more, Groundwork Fukuoka started to plant vegetables, such as sweet potatoes. In order to help the city and stop it from its decomposition, the “Sweet Potato Shochu distilled liquor” Project” started in 2010.
To prepare the ground for the planting of the potatoes, four people of Groundwork and two local people met in Joyo yesterday. We left the office at around 8am and arrived an hour later. After picking up some more utensils, we started working on the field from around 9.30am. While two were cutting the grass, the others were collecting it with rakes. It was sunny almost all the time and around 26 degrees, so working there was very exhausting and tiring. Luckily we brought cold Japanese tea with which we were able to refresh ourselves in the breaks.
Afterwards the soil got aerated and we put new soil with fertilizer on top. After working for almost 4 hours in the burning sun, everyone was exhausted and hungry, so four of us decided to have lunch together.
But afterwards we had to prepare another field as well. The ground was very dry but full of weeds we had to get out by the roots. After doing that for a while and having another break, it looked like it was about to rain soon. So we shared the soil over the ground we removed the weeds from here as well and got ready to go back to Fukuoka.
For me this trip was an interesting experience. I was willing to try anything in the internship, but for physical work on a farm you should be physically fit. It is still good that I tried, although it was hard for me, because the nature of this city is very pretty and I loved the houses in this area that had this traditionally Japanese style.
After all everyone was mostly still in a good mood and we of course have some pictures to show you: