This morning we had an appointment at Dainichi to meet with Shigeru-san and his staff. Firstly we managed to locate and bowl the Koi that we had purchased at the auction a few days prior. The organisational skills of these larger farms is really quite impressive. An auction booklet with each Koi in it had written next to it how much it sold for, to whom and the pond number which it was in. Taking photos and videos of each Koi they looked much better than I remembered from the auction day! Bonus.
Here are the videos of the Koi.
A Mixture of Female, Males, quality and price! The Maruten Kohaku and one of the Showa we are considering leaving as azukari for the year. Can expect them to be nearer 70cm in 12 months if all goes well.
Prices and information to follow on the website soon.
After viewing our Koi, we sat down with Shigeru-san to discuss an exciting new project on the horizon. More on this soon!
Leaving Dainichi we received a call from Daisuke at Yagenji Koi Farm. Mentioning they had harvested two Nisai ponds we now had a great opportunity to select some Koi prior to them being picked through. The crystal clear waters here makes selecting Koi a very pleasant experience. A relaxing environment, having a coffee and looking at Koi. I could spent many many hours here! Yagenji Farm keeps it nice and simple when it comes to pricing. Each pond has a set price, then one or two ponds are individually priced pieces. Scouring each pond for potential buys we bowled 20 or so Koi to have a look at. Having a closer look we placed some back, and netted up new ones. The process went on for 30 minutes or so until we were happy with 10 Koi to be purchased. Some lovely affordable Koi including Kikusui, Karashigoi, Gin Rin Sanke, Sanke, Gin Rin Bekko, Tancho Showa and Showa.
These range from £495 to £895, soon to be on the website. 10 in total. circa 45cm. Nisai.
Finishing up in the upper Koi house Daisuke was excited to show us our Azukari Showa which was kept in the lower Koi house. Here are mainly sold larger Koi, and Sansai Koi for sale all varying in price again.
Bowling our Showa we were very happy with the result. She’s now packing a beautifully imposing body. Beni is luxurious and the sumi is creeping up gradually. Daisuke feels the sumi has a better chance of coming up sooner in UK waters rather than in Japan. This Showa had recently won a 2nd place at the Nagaoka Koi Show in tough competition in the 63bu class. She has such presence!
Hopping in the car we took a short 30 second drive down the hill to see Toshinobu or Ikarashi Koi Farm. Here we have a Tancho Showa which is now Sansai. Measuring 60cm she has put one a steady amount of growth, but now a lot more body. She was rather skinny last time we saw in Spring but after a season in the mud pond she was looking much better.
Quite a whirlwind day, we aimed to still had a handful of farms on the list to visit and buy Koi from. We were on a roll. Good azukari results, and some nice purchases made for the shop. Next up, Hiroi Conias.
Famous for their Doitsu varieties, Goshiki, Gin Rin Goshiki, Gin Rin Kohaku. Hiroi expressed that he didn’t actually have many higher quality Doitsu pieces this year. We always try to buy one or two exceptional examples. Focusing on Doitsu Showa initially there didn’t seem to be anything of very high quality. Hiroi said he promised next year that he will have something for us. We’ll hold him to that! Saying this, we struck lucky again, Hiroi had just harvested a Nisai pond and we were the first visitors of the day.
All of a sudden, a Gin Rin Goshiki caught my eye, then another, and another. A Gin Rin Kohaku was also spotted, then a Gin Rin Showa. Oh and an awesome Doitsu Sanke. Great! Maybe we didn’t succeed in finding Doitsu Showa but these varieties were beautiful. All female except the Gin Rin Kohaku this Hiroi selection really put a smile on our faces. To get Gin Rin Goshiki of this level is very hard, to find female Gin Rin Goshiki is even harder. We managed to find three of Hiroi’s best. All with attractive patterns, strong beni, high quality Gin Rin scales, and good bodies for future growth.
A very successful day so far, we had one more favourite farm in mind. Otsuka.
Otsuka is always great to visit. Having a lot of success with the Koi we purchased last year, we were back for more. However this time we didn’t want a 96cm Chagoi! The middle pond at Otsuka has real quality pieces, from Go Sanke to Goshiki, Asagi to Matsuba and so much more. There are also some stranger varieties like Kage Shiro/Hi Utsuri. Not everyones cup of tea but Kage Shiro Utsuri have proved to be popular this year and Otsuka’s develop really nicely in our water. The one that we wanted in the pond was sadly sold to Narita. Quickly contacting Ryuki he said it was already sold to one of his customers. Probably a blessing as it looked expensive! Honing in on a handful of Koi in the pond these looked very promising. Goshiki, Asagi, Doitsu Kohaku and Showa these were great little finds. Six Nisai and One Sansai Asagi. Today was the Goshiki day!
With the sun setting we left Otsuka and went back to the hotel. Tonight we spent the evening with Hosokai and his wife having dinner in Nagaoka. Great company and food we managed to learn in detail a lot about the farm and how he operates. Having been in the Koi world seemingly forever he had plenty of stories to tell.
In the morning we head to Sekiguchi, our first ever visit to the farm. Fingers crossed we like it! I’m sure we will… What else can we find ?