Marimo Moss Ball

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About: I work in the mental health field as a community based clinician in both outpatient setting and mobile crisis. I also have a duel career in health and wellness doing massage and personal exercise training. ...

Marimo Moss Balls are these nifty little balls of algae that have started popping up in pet stores and garden shops. In the U.S. they've become popular additions to freshwater tanks and ornamental water gardens. In Japan, these little balls are a protected species as they are only naturally found in a few places around the world.

Marimo Moss Balls are inexpensive to buy, maintain, and propagate. Because they are so slow growing, your moss ball can live for decades with the right care. If you put an airtight lid on your moss ball container, you'll rarely have to add water. Some Marimo Moss Ball enthusiasts claim these balls can live in a self-contained environment for years without needing water added.

This is also a very inexpensive project, everything cost under $10.

Step 1: Materials

Marimo Moss Ball

Container with lid

Decorations

Water

Step 2: Clean Everything

The first thing to do when setting up your moss ball's new home is to clean everything. Wash it all, even if it just came out of the package. I used some leftover fish tank gravel and a couple pieces of Apatite stone my wife had leftover.

Step 3: Decorate

Add your marbles, tank gravel, pebbles etc. whatever you want to make your moss ball's home cozy and more decorative.

Step 4: Add Water

Add room temperature water to the container. You don't want your moss ball too hot or too cold. If you live in an area with not so great water, use bottled water---you can get a jug at most stores for like $.50.

Step 5: Add Moss!

Now you are ready to add your moss ball! My wife ordered this tiny moss ball from an Etsy supplier, it actually ended up coming from China but you can get them from more local suppliers as well.

I consider this low water gardening as you don't have to change the moss's water or add water to the container all that often. Some people are more particular and recommend changing the water every couple of weeks, but we haven't found this to be necessary.

Step 6: Care & Maintenance

We've been baby sitting our friends' plants for a few months, one of which is a Marimo Moss Ball--Randy Moss. This is how we were introduced to moss balls. We haven't had to add any water to Randy's canning jar or do anything special. Our moss ball is about 6mm, Randy is much bigger.

Add water (if) when needed and keep out of direct sunlight. If your moss starts turning brown it means it's getting too direct light and needs to be moved. Also make sure to gently rock the container every so often to help the moss ball change sides.

When the moss ball starts to outgrow it's container, move it to a bigger one.

Low Water Gardening Challenge 2016

Runner Up in the
Low Water Gardening Challenge 2016

Maker Olympics Contest 2016

Participated in the
Maker Olympics Contest 2016

Makerspace Contest

Participated in the
Makerspace Contest

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    5 Discussions

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    Deneva

    2 years ago

    Unable to view the content, something went wrong. Too bad, it's something I would have liked to learn about.

    1 reply
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    tangotutDeneva

    Reply 2 years ago

    I had the same problem. I waited an hour or two and now it is fine.

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    morganhillchris

    2 years ago

    Many municipal water supplies are chlorinated (in the U.S.). It's it correct to assume that these moss balls will need bottled water in these instances?

    2 replies
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    CyberJawsmorganhillchris

    Reply 2 years ago

    If chlorine is an issue where you live then yes, I'd probably use bottled water.