Make a Japanese-Inspired String Garden

Learn the art of kokedama and add a string garden to your indoor or outdoor living space.

Photo By: Photo by Melissa Caughey

Photo By: Photo by Melissa Caughey

Photo By: Photo by Melissa Caughey

Photo By: Photo by Melissa Caughey

Photo By: Photo by Melissa Caughey

Photo By: Photo by Melissa Caughey

Photo By: Photo by Melissa Caughey

Photo By: Photo by Melissa Caughey

Photo By: Photo by Melissa Caughey

Photo By: Photo by Melissa Caughey

Photo By: Photo by Melissa Caughey

Photo By: Photo by Melissa Caughey

Photo By: Photo by Melissa Caughey

DIY String Gardens

Inspired by Japanese kokedama, learn how to create hanging gardens with your favorite plants, moss and garden twine.

Gather Your Supplies

Gather Your Supplies: plants/ potting soil / bonsai soil / water / mixing vessel / gardening gloves / scissors / garden twine / sheet moss / craft paper or newspaper to protect your surface from mess.

Mix it Up

Cover your work space with newspaper. Playing in the dirt can be a bit messy. If you prefer, wear gardening gloves. Begin by adding the same amounts of potting soil and bonsai soil to your mixing vessel. Then slowly add a bit of water. Mix and continue adding water a little at a time until your soil mixture can be molded and hold its shape in a ball.

Loosen Up

Gently remove your plant from its pot and tease off as much soil as you can from the roots.

Take a Bath

Then rinse off as much soil as you can from the roots.

Make a Ball

With the wet soil mixture, shape a ball large enough to accommodate the roots of the plant. 

Add a Plant

Very carefully poke a hole in the top center of the soil ball and insert the plant and its roots. Using your hands, rework the soil ball if necessary to reshape it.

Add Moss

Cut a length of twine at least 3 yards long. Wrap moss around the soil ball and secure it into place by tightly wrapping the twine. Continue until the entire soil ball is covered with moss. Tie off the twine ends in a knot. Trim excess twine.

Hang it Up

Next cut another length of garden twine about two feet in length. Tie it into place to use as a hanger.

Soak in Water

These plants tend to dry out more rapidly than potted plants. Be sure to monitor their watering needs. To water, submerge the root ball completely in water for a few minutes and hang to dry. The plant we use here is peperomia.

Endless Possibilities

Many varieties of plants including annuals, perennials and even houseplants can be turned into kokedama. Here an annual verbena is featured.

Kokedama Shortcut

If you enjoy the look of kokedama but are short on time, try removing the plant from the pot and immediately wrapping it with moss. The look is identical as in the case of this Maidenhair fern.

Make a Bunch

Try making a few and hanging them in a cluster for a living piece of art.