One of the things we liked about the location of our villa in Bali was the open space around us. Rice paddies almost embraced our doorstep
and stretched as far as the eye could see.
We didn’t have to walk far to really appreciate the intensive nature of rice farming. Seedlings are cultivated in a special nursery and are then transplanted by hand into the ploughed paddy fields. It looked like back-breaking work, hour after hour bent over to plant the rice in long rows in the mud.
Apparently, a farmer can plant 10,000 square feet of seedlings a day, each one placed 8-10 inches apart.
The water level is vital for the developing crop
and the innovative means of water control were fascinating.
There were thatched shelters scattered through the fields
and colourful shrines ensured a bountiful crop. Offerings are made to the Hindu goddess Dewi Sri at crucial periods such as planting, full moon, when the rice is a month old, the first appearance of the grains and before harvesting.
The rice is ready to be harvested after three months
and the cycle begins again.