Tambo: Life Inside a Rice Field

Tambo in Magome, Japan

NHK World aired a 2-hour special on Sunday examining a year in the life of an organic rice field in Japan. Through hypnotic time-lapse sequences and patient cameras, the show captured the incredible diversity of plants and animals that make up the “rice ecosystem” as well as the steady growth of the rice plants. I had no idea rice “flowered” or that some spiders build their nests at the tips of the stalks. Sure, there are “pests” too, the locusts and chinch bugs, but the frogs and spiders and other creatures take care of them without the aid of chemicals. Through the lens, the harvest seems a miraculous blessing and the family uses winnowing machines passed down by generations. A must-see if NHK happens to re-air it.

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