Red buckwheat flowers are seen in full bloom in the sprawling "Akasoba no sato" field in the town of Minowa, Nagano Prefecture, in this recent photo. The area's rolling hills are now planted with an improved buckwheat type called "Takane Ruby 2011" that is originally from the Himalayas. The short plants grow well even on unproductive land, according to the town, though it is primarily grown for its beauty and is not a food crop. The sight of the pink flowers, which will be in bloom until early October, also attracts a lot of visitors. Call the town tourist association at 0265-79-3111 (in Japanese) for inquiries.
(Japanese original by Naoaki Hasegawa, Photo Group)