Yoko Kato and Hiroko Kono, trainee farmers from Hokuryu Town, participated in the melon seedling grafting workshop (Lecturer: Yasunori Watanabe at Uryu Nursery).

Monday, August 24, 2020

On August 19 (Wed.), a melon grafting seminar was held at the Uryu Seedling Facility (Uryu Town) under the auspices of the North Sorachi Branch of the Sorachi Agricultural Extension Center (Fukagawa City). The lecturer was Mr. Yasunori Watanabe, a 57-year-old resident of Hokuryu Town, who is a Hokkaido Agricultural Advisor.

Uryu Seedling Raising Facility (Uryu Town)

Amaryu Seedling Raising Facility

Melon grafting workshop

Hokuryu Town agricultural experience trainees also participated.

Erisa Kaneda, who trained at Yasunori Watanabe's farm and is a new melon farmer, participated as an assistant instructor. The participants were Hiroko Kono and Yoko Kato, two of this year's Hokuryu agricultural interns, and three part-timers from the Uryu Seedling Facility (working at the melon seedling center in the afternoon), for a total of five people.

Grafting workshop organized by the Agricultural Extension Center

The grafting workshop at the Amaryu Seedling Center has been held annually for three to four years.

Progress observation of grafting

Observation of previously grafted live grafts

The grafting that was done last time is looking strong and active. 

Melon seedlings firmly established


While listening to Mr. Watanabe's careful explanation...

Lecturer Yasunori Watanabe

'Grafting should be handled both harshly and gently. Treat them gently and kindly.

Mr. Watanabe carefully and meticulously explained the important points with diagrams and instructed everyone on how to shave the stem of the melon.

Scrape off the stem part of the red mark.

melon grafting

The grafting process involves grafting the fruiting melon body onto a melon rootstock with strong roots, which grows a healthy, delicious melon that is resistant to soil-borne diseases. It also prevents continuous crop damage.

1. pick the core buds of the rootstock and make a vertical cut from the center of the cotyledon base from the top down.

make a slit in the middle of a lengthwise slit

Thinly shave both sides of the stem of the melon.

Thinly shave both sides of the stem of the melon body.

Insert it into the base and fasten it with a mini-clip.

clip (e.g. with a miniature clip)

Everyone, have fun and be serious!

Everyone, have fun and be serious!

Repeat the process until you get the hang of it.

With Mr. Watanabe's careful guidance.

With guidance on how to do the work.

Yoko Kato, agricultural internship student at Hokuryu Town

After the course, we spoke with Yoko Kato, 38, an agricultural experience trainee, who started her agricultural experience training on Sunday, August 9. The training is scheduled to continue until the end of October.

Yoko Kato

Mr. Kato was born in Sapporo. He loves skiing and holds a first-class certification in skiing from the SAJ (All Japan Ski Federation), and he participated in ski competitions. She went skiing with her family when she was in elementary school, and skiing lessons were the beginning of her love for skiing. Before becoming an intern, she worked in customer service and office work.

He continued, "As I entered the workforce, it became difficult to balance work and skiing, so I stopped skiing for a time and continued to live a work-centered life for the next 10 years.

However, he just couldn't give up skiing and said, 'I want to live my life around skiing. I don't know when I will die, and I want to live my life enjoying skiing, which is what I love to do! I want to live my life enjoying skiing, which is what I love to do!

In my search, I learned that many people who ski are farmers. However, it was difficult for me to make the leap into farming.

It was under these circumstances that last fall I attended the "Seminar for New Farmers and Agricultural Experience (Sapporo)" organized by the Hokkaido Agricultural Leaders Development Center (KACD). At the seminar, I learned that various municipalities were ready to accept new farmers, and I was able to make a connection with Hokuryu Town.

I then searched the Internet and found that Hokuryu Town has an excellent agricultural experience training program. I also found the feature article by Erisa Kaneda (nee Hara) on the Hokuryu Town Portal to be very informative.

And when I came to Hokuryu Town, I said, 'I want to live in Hokuryu Town! I really want to live in Hokuryu Town! said Mr. Kato with a wonderful smile.

Yoko Kato's dream is to spend the rest of her life in Hokuryu Town, which is deep in snow and full of attractions during the winter season, enjoying her favorite skiing as much as she can, along with farming.

With boundless love, gratitude, and prayers for the agricultural experience training that will allow you to fully experience the charm of agriculture in Hokuryu Town through a variety of agricultural experience training.

Hokuryu Town, where ears of rice are ripening

More Photos

interpoint (interword separation)Click here for 65 photos of the melon seedling grafting workshop (Yasunori Watanabe, instructor at the Amaryu Nursery Facility) >>

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◇ Photography and Editing: Noboru Terauchi Reporting and Writing: Ikuko Terauchi