Uwa-mizu-zakura (Cherry Blossom) button

A Japanese cherry tree, Uwamizakura, blooms white flowers in my garden. I dried its hard branches for about six months to make small buttons. The small annual rings on the hard little branches depicted the years of its life.
When two holes were drilled in the branches with small annual rings to make buttons, they started laughing with various expressions. When I placed the buttons on the tree, which had rolled out of the door with a giggle and a chuckle, the buttons, which had been scraps of branches, created a world of their own.
When humans add just a little bit of their own touch to cool nature, a very heartwarming world opens up. I sometimes wonder if this is the original role of human beings.

Wreaths of forest blessings

The day when the sun is out the shortest. It is the moment when the life of all plants and flowers is stored in its shade. From the forest in our yard, I gathered seemingly dead vines, red berries, brown berries, and branches of trees that are always green to make a large wreath. It is a sign that proclaims the story of rebirth that begins at the winter solstice.

The visible sun is most powerful at the summer solstice and weakest at the winter solstice. The invisible grass roots are most powerful at the winter solstice. It is the moment when death and life share the same face. All life begins at this moment and ends at this moment, it seems. But it repeats the eternal cycle.

An eternal cycle. The cycle does not stay in the same place, but spirals and spins out the next age. Nothing is the same, just as no two moments are the same.

Sundial watch

This is a sundial in the form of a wristwatch made from a tree in our ’zousouen’ garden. When the top of the clock is set to north, a thread shadow is cast to the right or left. We made this clock for many of you who want to rest at night, relax on a rainy day, look out the window, or just throw away the exact time.

Let’s start a small vegetable shop.

Try to sell your own harvested vegetables in front of your house. If you are not able to guard the store, place a box for customers to put their money in. Is there any possibility of theft? Trust humanity to be the best work in the universe.

First, find out if you need a permit to sell vegetables.

A small store can be made out of unwanted furniture, wood, or metal boxes. And, set up your store so that it does not interfere with others.

If you grow few vegetables, what can you sell?

In that case, find a farmer in your neighborhood who grows vegetables without pesticides and chemical fertilizers, and ask him to share his surplus vegetables with you.

Vegetables grown without the use of pesticides and chemical fertilizers have less acridity, less peculiar taste, and are generally sweeter. Even people who dislike vegetables will come to like them very much.

We found a young farm in the same city that was ambitiously growing vegetables without pesticides or chemical fertilizers, and we bought from that farm.

And here is the finished store. The customer puts the payment into the wooden box.

It was a very small store, but we were very happy. We also put a small flyer in the store.

Freshly harvested vegetables are shining with freshness. I wanted to convey that freshness to my customers, so I devised various ways to keep leafy greens, which tend to wilt, fresh. The display of root vegetables, which do not sell well, also requires a lot of trial and error. Our little vegetable store has made life fun.