Here’s a large Japanese radish that my neighbor grows, here in Miyano. They’re known as “daikon” (大根）which literally means “big root”. It’s one of Japan’s biggest agricultural items, with different pieces of the daikon showing up all over in the Japanese culinary arts.
Agriculture is so beautiful here. Everything is small. It’s true, I’ve seen huge monoculture fields and thought, “Wow, this sight is really impressive.” but in Japan, because of the mountanous landscape all the farming is done small. Even if you have a large area devoted to rice paddies, they’re subdivided into smaller sections for irrigation purposes. It’s really something. Especially in areas here like Miyano, I feel like everybody grows a little something, even if it’s only radishes, or rice. They all grow something to share or trade with their neighbours, or to give as gifts.
On the other side of our house, we have another neighbour that grows rice. Here they are with their son in the field. I’ve waved hi and chatted with the kid a few times, but I don’t know their names. Sometimes I feel badly for them because they have to share a neighbourhood recycling station with us foreigners who are so poor at the Japanese art of proper recycling and waste disposal.