Suspended Kokedama or how to cultivate plants differently

Suspended Kokedama - an original way to highlight a plant

Suspended kokedama is a kind of bonsai . "Kokedama" means "foam ball" in Japanese. We obtain a sphere of soil of a dozen centimeters, surrounded by moss, in which a plant is cultivated. For an even more chic effect we suspend the plant in the ball with son. In fact, in this way plants grow without the need for pots.

At its origin, it is a union of three Japanese ancestral techniques (bonsai, ikebana and nearai). In short, it is a question of presenting a plant as a work of vegetable art, suspended or placed on a support (a slate, bamboo or wooden tray for example), by wrapping its roots in a sphere of coated substrate. of foam. It is an alternative to the traditional pot but the result is the same: the plant grows normally.

Plants are transformed into plant sculptures for indoors or outdoors

kokedama suspended succulents

Which plants to choose and how to take care of kokedama

In theory, any plant can be presented in the form of kokedama. On the other hand, in practice it is well advised to avoid the species with the difficult root adaptation and to prefer some less demanding (the asparagus, the dwarf palms, the dwarf succulents).

A kokedama requires regular watering. The weight of the ball is the best indicator to know when to water your plant. If it is heavy, it means that the amount of water is sufficient for the roots. If the ball is light, it must be watered. For this purpose, fill a bowl with enough water to completely cover the ball. Immerse in water for 2-3 minutes. Then remove it and press so that the water enters the center. The other possibility is to use a mini-funnel that lets the water enter the root ball.

Depending on the regional climatic characteristics and the chosen plant, the substrate may contain different elements. Normally, under the moss in area, it must be adapted to the needs of the plant species. It is a mixture of Japanese black clay called ketho, vermiculite and akadama in different percentages.

The preparation of the plant to be transformed into kokedama consists in cleaning its roots and cut to 1/3 of its length. After she is ready to be planted and covered with natural green moss. Indeed, kokedama is two or three years old. Then you have to redo the sphere with a new substrate. In addition, roots grow over time and require more space.

Discover the Japanese art of hanging kokedama (kind of bonsai a little particular)

kokedama string of color

DIY Kokedama suspended

You'll need :

  • a bucket plant (daisy, primrose, Spanish turf, fern, ficus, fat, etc.)
  • of the' clay
  • peat
  • potting soil
  • dry sphagnum
  • natural moss
  • a string of hemp (cotton thread)
  • scissors
  • gloves
  • a bowl (bowl)
  • some water

Indeed, it's easy to make a suspended kokedama

creation of kokedama


If you have decided to create a kokedama, you must first prepare the substrate. For this purpose dilute the clay overnight with a little water, to obtain a pasty texture.

The next day mix in the bowl of potting soil (a handful of the size of the ball you want to get), peat, sphagnum cut into pieces and the clay diluted with a little water. It is necessary that the mixture has more the color of the soil than that of the clay and that the future ball is not brittle.

The second important step is the preparation of the plant. As already explained, we must remove the plant and remove the maximum of soil roots. Shorten these if they are too long.

Before coating the roots with the substrate, clean them well from the old soil

cleaning the roots of a plant

Now you have to make a sphere of substrate. Make sure it's as small as possible, making sure it's big enough to hold the roots of your plant. If there is a need for a size correction, reshape it. The roots should be carefully wrapped. Then take the mousse and press it firmly against the potting soil. Do not leave any empty space.

Make a ball big enough for the roots

modeling substrate ball

Cover with natural moss for a decorative effect

ground bean cover with foam

The ball covered with foam must be wrapped with the string. Go around the sphere multiple times. Remember to leave enough string to hang the plant.

This is probably an original way to put a plant on stage

kokedama creation

Choose a place to put kokedama

Choose a place in your house that is sheltered from drafts and not too sunny. The moss is purely decorative, it does not protect the plant as usually a flower pot. Before suspending kokedama, soak it in water. It is advisable to repeat this periodically to provide the foam with sufficient moisture.

Soak the hanging kokedama in water to moisturize it

soak a kokedama in water

Kokedama, a Japanese spherical foam decoration, is less demanding to grow than it looks

suspended garden


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