“Landscape of Kishira” A primeval laurel forest from the Jomon period.
Twenty million years ago, an archipelago consisting of five main islands split from the continent, to become Japan – where we live today. With a territory going from the Sea of Okhotsk to the Philippine Sea in the Pacific Ocean, Japan has a significant diverse climate and has a rich biota a significant diversity in the flora: Of about 7,500 plant species, about 2,700 are endemic to Japan.
However, a lot of this unique vegetation is at risk and is silently disappearing.
I visited Kimotsuki – Kishira, in 2018. Located in the Eastern part of the Osumi Peninsula in Kagoshima Prefecture, it is famous for hosting the Uchinoura Space Observatory (JAXA). It is also a precious area where a primeval laurel forest has remained since the Jomon period.
There, I felt the presence of a god, spreading over the warm and humid zone in between the forest and the sea. I also felt that the scenery of Kishira may be the birth place of contemporary Japan, connecting Jomon and the universe.