What is wabi kusa and how do we incorporate it into aquascaping?


Wabi Kusa is a method of inserting various aquatic plants and mosses into a ball or mat of substrate. Takashi Amano popularized this method as a way of planting large tanks more efficiently. Instead of painstakingly planting each tiny bundle of plants with tweezers he would prepare mats of plants to simply tuck into his tanks. Today we're going to show you how to make you're own ball version that you can rest on top of an aquascape or showcase as the centerpiece of a terrarium!

-------------------------------------------------------------------------Tutorial Time-------------------------------------------------------------------------


  • Studio Aquatica substrate ball
  • Cylindrical glass jar
  • Spiderwood
  • Aquascaping tweezers
  • Rock Sand


  • Water wysteria
  • Staurgyne repens
  • Christmas moss

*we recommend using terrarium plants or aquatic plants that can survive outside of the water


  • Aquascaping tweezers
  • Green thread and pin, included in aquatics substrate ball




-------------------------------------------------------------------------Lets's make a wabi kusa!-------------------------------------------------------------------------

First we're going to briefly soak our substrate ball in water so that it's easier to work with. Next we're going to insert our plants into the substrate ball. To do so, it's easier to first poke a hole with your tweezers where you want to insert your plants. Then you can push your plants in!


Now we're going to hide our substrate ball with moss. After wetting the moss, temporarily stick the moss to the ball. It's not gonna be perfect, don't worry because our next step is to use the terra line to tie the moss to the substrate ball! Do this by wrapping the line in all different angles around the ball. Finish up by tying it off and you have your very on wabi kusa ball!


-------------------------------------------------------------------------Lets Aquascape!-------------------------------------------------------------------------

Now that we have our very own wabi kusa ball we have a couple options: we can put it in a jar with a bit of water and sand as a terrarium but what we're gonna show you is how to incorporate your wabi kusi ball into an aquascape!

Create your underwater world to your liking and then we're going to lay a piece of spiderwood over the top of our container. We were able to rotate it in a way such that the wabi kusa ball is resting on the wood with just an inch or two of the ball submerged. Everyone's spiderwood is going to be different, so this is your chance to get creative!! 


At Hakkai we have wabi kusa workshops where we'll walk you through this whole process starting with making your own wabi kusa ball rather than a premade one! Come get your hands dirty and I hope we see you soon!








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