Traditional handmade papermaking process in Ogawa begins with the harvesting of kozo plants (paper mulberry). Handmade Washi is made with the raw material from this plant.
Kozo trees in summer time.
And now waiting to be harvested.
From November to January, kozo is harvested after its leaves fall, then cut to a length of about 70-100 cm to fit into a cauldron.
Kozo (paper mulberry) is native to Japan and is primarily used for making washi. Ascribed a masculine quality due to its longer finber and strength, kozo is grown annually as a crop so no forests are depleted.