Last Monday we harvested hundreds of "nira" starts at an acquaintance's farm off-island. Nira is like a cross between garlic and chives, but with leaves shaped like blades of grass. It is super delicious and used in many dishes here in Japan. We had so many starts we needed to build some more beds on the fly after filling the entire first field we prepared earlier!!!
Nira is perennial, spreads from the roots and by seeds, can be divided and transplanted every couple years, out-competes most weeds, and grows better after it is cut/harvested. If you leave the roots in place and cut just above the soil it will produce all year long, well into the colder months, and it over-winters well without much care. So, the question is: why didn't we start this deliciously lucrative endeavor earlier!?!?
Thankfully, we had extra help the next day when we returned to the island to transplant the starts into our fields. Thank you Tsuchi and Manabu. Without you guys we might still be laboring away in the nira fields!!!