About our farm
Based in scenic mountainous Shiga, Matsumoto, Nagano, we grow and deliver fresh organic seasonal vegetables. In addition to farm box home deliveries, we also wholesale our produce. Please inquire for further details regarding wholesale. We update farm box photos on our Instagram and on our facebook page every Monday.
We practice organic farming (no chemical pesticides/herbicides or synthetic fertilizers) although we are not certified. Please also note we use seeds that might have been treated with chemicals and soil mix that may contain chemical fertilizers. In order to grow healthy and tasty produce, we focus on building a healthy ecosystem. Please see "how we farm" for further details regarding our commitment to building better soil health.
How we farm
How we farm
We believe our farm should resemble a natural ecosystem. Trees and plants out in the wild grow massive without any inputs or sprays because they can create their own nutrients through photosynthesis. But that is only a fraction of the whole picture. It is also because they are part of nature’s cycle. Plants are in a symbiotic relationship with diverse soil organisms that decompose and release nutrients contained in various organic compounds (dead plants and animals, etc.).
We are trying to mimic natural ecosystem. We grow cover crops so not to leave the soil uncovered (you rarely see bare soil in nature) and to encourage photosynthesis even between crop production, whenever possible. We also aim to increase biodiversity in the field by planting different families of crops close together (avoiding monoculture) and by planting flowers to foster beneficial insect habitat. Furthermore, we are moving away from tilling because over- tillage can destroy soil structure and microbial population in the soil.
We do not use chemical fertilizers. (except fertilizers contained in purchased seeding soil mix). There is no need. We replenish what we remove (i.e. crop harvest) but we avoid chemical inputs because they are difficult to handle due to their intensity even in small dosages and because they can even harm soil biology. Moreover, over application can cause environmental and health problems. Nitrogen and phosphorus commonly found in chemical fertilizers can leach into the ground and pollute groundwater, if not absorbed by plants. Over application can also harm crop quality. Instead, we use natural materials as soil amendment - cover crops, compost, plant based fermented fertilizer we make with rice bran, rice husks and soybean meal; wood ashes and charcoal; mineral rocks and powders, and marine-derived minerals. Over application can occur even with our natural soil amendment so we always try to apply an appropriate amount at an appropriate timing.
We do not use chemical herbicides (except chemical treatment that comes with purchased seeds). There is no need. We believe plants that grow with good soil biology are healthy and therefore can fight off pests or diseases. However, in reality, we still struggle to keep everything pest free so we use netting as physical protection. Also by encouraging biodiversity, we are, in essence, trying to keep the balance in check so not any one type of pathogens or pests proliferate to the point they cause too much damage.
By implementing farming practice that mimics a natural ecosystem, we should be able to create an environment in which vegetables can absorb whatever and whenever they need. Ultimately, we believe we can therefore bring you more nutrient-dense and tastier vegetables. In agriculture there are always new findings so we will continue exploring a better farming method. (last updated May 2023)