Marimo Moss Ball – What Is A Marimo Moss Ball?
A marimo moss ball is a type of terrarium made from the roots of certain types of aquatic plants such as Marimo (Morus alba), Pothos (Pythium salicaria) or other species. These plants are grown in water and then placed into a glass container with gravel underneath it. The root system grows around the container and eventually forms a small dome shape. The bottom of the domed terrarium acts like a filter to keep out unwanted organisms, while keeping the plant roots alive.
The marimo moss ball is usually used as an indoor decoration because it does not require much maintenance and it looks very attractive. You can use them indoors in your home or even outdoors if you have access to natural sunlight. They do need some care though.
Watering them too often will cause them to rot and die, so they must be watered regularly. If left outside without any protection, they may become moldy over time and start looking disgusting.
How Do I Make A Marimo Moss Ball Terrarium?
First of all you will need to choose a suitable container for your marimo moss ball. Bottles, glass jars or bowls can all be used, as long as there is a small hole in the lid for the air to get in and plenty of room at the bottom for the gravel. You will also need some aquarium gravel, though not the kind that has small pebbles in it. You only want the larger sized gravel for this project.
Once you have gathered everything you need, you can start placing your marimo moss ball into the container. You want to make sure that there is enough room for it to float around. Marimo moss ball tend to grow bigger over time and will need more room as they grow.
For this reason, it is best to use a larger container rather than a small one. The larger the container, the easier it will be to take care of because you will only need to water it occasionally.
After you have placed your marimo moss ball in the container, you can add a little bit of water. You do not want to add too much water at first because you want the roots to soak it up slowly. Check on it every day and add more water as it soaks it all up.
Eventually, you will need to water it less often because the roots will have spread out more and can reach the water.
Whatever you do, do not overwater your marimo moss ball! This is the number one cause of death for these cute little creatures. Check their container every day and as long as you see evaporation lines in the container, then you know that it needs watering.
If you still aren’t sure, wait another day or two to be safe.
The size of your container will determine how often you need to water it. For example, a three gallon container will require water more often than a one gallon container. The general rule of thumb is that if there are evaporation lines present in the container then it needs to be watered.
If you can wait longer than a month before watering it again, then it probably does not need water at all.
In order to keep your marimo moss ball healthy and happy, it is best to mimic its natural environment as best you can. This means keeping the temperature at around 60 degrees and the humidity around 75 to 95 percent. If these conditions are not met, then its health will deteriorate until it eventually dies.
You can use a humidifier or bowl of water to increase the humidity if needed.
Another thing to keep in mind is to not place it in direct sunlight or near a heating vent. These conditions are not suitable for marimo moss ball and doing so will cause them to dry out and die. If you have no choice but to do these things then make sure to keep an eye on it and increase the humidity yourself if need be.
If at any point your marimo moss ball starts to rot or deteriorate, you will need to get rid of it immediately. You can’t just throw it away though!
You need to keep marimo moss ball out of the garbage. Not only is this bad for the environment, but it could harm plants or animals that eat it or eat something that has eaten it.
The best way to get rid of a dead one is to put it in an old plastic container or bag and take it out to a park or somewhere outside the city limits. Once you get to your destination, make sure that it can’t find its way back. Then, bury it or leave it on top of several large books so that it is at the same height as the ground around it.
You’re done! You now know everything you need to know about keeping a marimo moss ball. They don’t require much attention and they are happy just soaking up the sun all day and cuddling with each other at night.
You may not be their dad, but you will certainly make a great substitute.
Sources & references used in this article:
Plant Cuttings by K Law, AA de Souza Machado, S Chiba, J Zalasiewic… – 2018 – academic.oup.com
Marimo machines: oscillators, biosensors and actuators by N Phillips, TC Draper, R Mayne… – Journal of biological …, 2019 – Springer
The Lake Akan Area: A Future Geopark? by M Cooper – Natural Heritage of Japan, 2018 – Springer
The magical world of moss gardening by A Martin – 2016 – books.google.com
No more lake balls (Aegagropila linnaei Kützing, Cladophorophyceae, Chlorophyta) in The Netherlands? by C Boedeker, A Immers – Aquatic Ecology, 2009 – Springer
The unusual occurrence of green algal balls of Chaetomorpha linum on a beach in Sydney, Australia by J Cooke, R Lanfear, A Downing, MR Gillings… – Botanica …, 2015 – degruyter.com
Global Decline of and Threats to Aegagropila linnaei, with Special Reference to the Lake Ball Habit by C Boedeker, A Eggert, A Immers, E Smets – BioScience, 2010 – academic.oup.com