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  • Juju Kurihara


Green round shaped fluffy moss balls. You may have seen them. They are Kokedama, literally, moss (koke) ball (dama) in Japanese is a recent popular interior item in Japan. In the last few years, it's become popular outside of Japan too.

Maybe you have heard about Bonsai (盆栽), these miniature trees in small ceramic pots. The trees can be looked after generations and some of them are more than 100 years old. If you think about they are the same trees as you see in the nature, it's not so surprising, isn't it?

Bonsai originally created in China about 2,000-2,500 years ago. The photo below is a mural from 706 AD in China and you can see a servant carries Bonsai. In China, it was called 盆景 (Pénjǐng), a tray landscape.

Pénjǐng was brought to Japan around the 8th and the 12th centuries and enjoyed by the noble people. Then in Edo period (1603-1867), Bonsai became accessible to common people.

The origin of Kokedama is Bonsai. It's easier to maintain and you can make your own is the most fun part. The round fluffy shape seems to catch younger women. Comparing to Bonsai that is often considered as "an old people's hobby", kokedama attracts all generations.

Traditional trees or non-traditional trees and plants. It's up to you how to make your kokedama.

If you are interested in trying yourself, here is how to make your own kokedama.


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