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Ambient Lighting for Marimo Balls

Marimo moss balls (Aegagropila linnaei) are peaceful looking seaweed balls, a species of green algae. Somewhat rare in natural occurence,marimo moss balls are only found in the northern hemisphere, hailing from Iceland, Scotland, Estonia and Japan.These zen­like creatures are so unique and striking in their earth­like shape that they are protected in Iceland and Japan. I don’t know many types of algae which bear such a distinction! The alga is even marketed as a stuffed toy in Japan. Though...

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The Marimo’s Physical Resemblance to the Earth as Part of its Appeal

Locale: Northern Hemisphere (Japan, Iceland, Scotland, Estonia) Aegagropila Linnaei, also known as Marimo in Japanese and Lake Ball or Moss Balls in English is a rare but assuredly cute form of filamentous green algae that grows in lakes in the northern hemisphere. These wondrously velvety balls of algae can sometimes form whole colonies. Their aesthetic appeal and slight semblance to the Earth has heralded them a position of national treasure in Japan, where they've been under protection since the 1920s.Their...

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Their Ancestors Lived in the Sea?

For marimo to grow to the size of a baseball, it was often said, would take between 150 to 200 years. Recently, however, it was revealed that the marimo's growth rate is not unduly slow but rather recent water conditions are not conducive to their growth. More than lake water, diluted sea water or salt water encourages marimo's growth.There are more than 20 lakes in Japan and neighboring countries where marimo have been confirmed to live. The greater part...

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The Marimo’s Survival Techniques in Nature

Marimo are photosynthetic plants but can subsist in murky water with the scantest amount of sunlight. This capacity enables the epilithic filament form of marimo, unlike many other water plants, to thrive while attached to dead trees or rocks in water depths of over 10 meters.Aggregate and spherical marimo do not attach themselves to rocks or submerged trees but are instead moved about by the lake's undercurrents. Though these forms of marimo are not stationary plants, aggregate and spherical...

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My First Encounter with a Marimo

“Are the fuzzy leaf-ball things in this tank for fish to play with?” I asked. The aquarium shop clerk removed the covering and dipped his fingers into the water. “Almost,” he said, poking the green, velvety ball around. “It’s a pet plant, a Marimo. A spongy city of plant cells that drifts around lake bottoms at night and floats to the surface in time for sunrise. Makes for an easy pet, they’re really not fussy. They’re fine with fresh tank...

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The Natural and Forced Deaths of Marimo

Above: A marimo flattened by the winter ice which covers Lake Akan.The number of marimo in Lake Akan and other lakes has been slowly decreasing. A large portion of the blame for the decreasing number of marimo is attributed to pollution and its effect on the water and environment where marimo live. Pollution however has a surprising accomplice which may outwardly appear guiltless but exacts a destructive toll on marimo nonetheless.From the end of December until sometime within the...

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Using CO2 to Enhance Marimo Growth

Those willing to spend on supplies and aquarium upgrades to improve their Marimo’s growth rate get their best results from achieving the right combination of appropriate fertilizing, light spectrum and intensity, dissolved mineral content, variance of water flow, and just enough supplemental carbon dioxide to keep the tank’s water pH balanced. The exact details will vary depending on how close your current setup is to the optimal combination of conditions for your Marimo.General Recommendations: General suggestions for upgrades to speed...

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The Best Music to Listen to While Enjoying your Marimo

Marimo in the lake, marimo in the terrarium. Wherever you prefer your marimo moss balls, make sure you have an algae-pleasing soundtrack on hand to please your ears and your spheres.Music Makes Marimo Moss Balls More Soothing: The best way to enjoy Marimo Moss Balls is by simply staring at them while listening to music. They make a great focal point to concentrate on while listening to calming meditation music by adding a bit of nature to an otherwise industrial looking...

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Why Do Marimo Become Spherical?

Marimo live at the bottom of Lake Akan, a mysterious lake nestled between the slopes of Mt. O-Akan and Mt. Me-Akan. Within this large lake there are only two locations, Churui Bay and Kinetanpe Bay both situated in the northern area of the lake, where profusions of velvet like spherical marimo can still be seen. In the Taisho Era (1912-1925), marimo could also be seen at Shurikomabetsu Bay and Osaki in the western section of Lake Akan however use...

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Marimo as a Form of Creative Artistic Expression

Marimo balls are spherical shaped algae found in the lakes of Japan, Iceland, and Estonia.  They have a soft, velvety appearance, and often move around like dancing, bouncy balls.  They would be a great addition to any fresh-water home aquarium; not only are they fun to look at, but marimo balls act as filters to clean the water, too! The balls have a pleasant velvety appearance and are beautiful when displayed in a fish tank or underwater terrarium.Marimos are very...

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