They Planted Rice In A Field, But 4 Months Later… Everyone’s Jaw Dropped.
Twenty years ago, there was virtually zero tourism in Inakadate, Japan. A small, rural community that's comprised of mostly rice paddies and apple orchards, there was no real reason for tourists to visit.
Until now, that is.
Koichi Hanada, a clerk at the village hall, was tasked with finding a way to bring tourism to the area. After months of thought, he happened to see some children playing in a rice paddy as a class project. They were planting two kinds of rice plants: Purple and bright green ones. That's when Hanada got the idea: Why not plant the fields in such a way to create pictures when viewed from above?
They're calling it paddy art, and it's worked to bring tourism to the area.
Every year since the early nineties, villagers have create pictures in the fields, using the rice paddies as their canvas.
As the plants grow, the picture becomes more and more clear.
Once it's totally grown in, the effect is pretty mind-blowing.
And it's worked on the tourism side, too: Last year, over 170,000 came through to see the paddy art.
The process is incredibly precise, using a computer model to guide more than 8,000 plant stakes in exactly the right spots.
The images have become so detailed that the mayor, Koyu Suzuki, says visitors often ask if they are drawn on the paddies with paints.
Each year, the pictures have become more and more intricate.
“We have no sea and no mountains, but what we do have plenty of is rice,” said Mr. Suzuk said. “We have to create a tourism industry using our own ingenuity.”
Source: NY Times