Kokedama – These Moss Balls Are The Newest Decor Trend

In cities, most residents live in condominiums and apartments in high-rise buildings. If you are a plant-lover and having a balcony, you are blessed. Good news is that you can create an urban garden in the small outdoor space and give your green-thumb some pampering.

However, there is no need to worry if you have no outdoor space; there are a lot of indoor plants that you can grow that will brighten up your space. Plants like cacti, orchids, and a variety of hanging plants are perfect for indoor plant-spots. There are many options for indoor plants, especially with the technological advancements that allow growing vegetables indoors using grow rooms and lights. For a more unique and green experiment, you can also try Kokedama.

What is a Kokedama?

Kokedamas are not merely hanging house plants that are beautiful and easy to take care of. It is a Japanese botanical concept that combines aesthetics in beauty and simplicity, along with the possibilities of meditation with plant harmony. When translated from Japanese, Kokedama means “moss ball” (Koke meaning “moss” and dama meaning “ball”). They are a particular kind of bonsai that have been grown and crafted for several centuries. Wealthy Japanese folks like aristocrats, who had a more luxurious lifestyle, could afford the more elaborate kinds of bonsai. The less affluent Japanese, however, found ways to include a piece of nature in their lives by cultivating Kokedamas. Soon the plants were nicknamed “poor man’s bonsai.” They are beautiful plants that are easier to care for than the other kinds of bonsai, which needed more meticulous handling.

The Philosophy of Wabi-sabi

The art of making and caring for Kokedamas can be derived from the Japanese philosophy of wabi-sabi. Wabi refers to the characteristic of simplicity, and it applies to both rustic or refined objects, as well as natural or manmade items. Sabi, on the other hand, explains that aging and time can bring about serenity and beauty.  This philosophy is derived from Buddhism and the Japanese tea ceremony, where unique and handmade items are more valuable. As cracks appear on items, they grow more in value and beauty according to Wabi-sabi. The same principle can be applied to a well-used book, a handmade bowl, an irregularly-shaped tomato, etc. It is a philosophy that celebrates beauty in simplicity and imperfection. The philosophy of wabi-sabi dictates that your Kokedama need not be perfect as there is always room for improvement and creativity.

How to Make Your Own Kokedama

Kokedamas are made for more shady places such as interior rooms as exposure to the sun can dry them very easily. The first step is to choose plants that thrive in indoor light like herbs, ferns, peace lilies, and anthuriums. For the making of the Kokedama, the following are needed: the plant of your choosing, water, organic bonsai soil, peat moss, sphagnum moss, and jute or fishing string.

Remove the excess soil from the root of your chosen plant and wrap them in sphagnum moss and a string. Mix 7 parts of peat moss with three parts of bonsai soil to form a clay mixture. Use the mixture to carefully shape the ball that will be your Kokedama, cover the ball in sheet moss and tie it securely with a string. Remember, beauty lies in the imperfections.