The History and Science of Marimo

Are Marimo Edible? And a Little Background Information on the Marimo

Cladophora Aegagropila linnaei, commonly known as marimo (Japanese for “ball seaweed”), lake balls, or moss balls, has been declared a national treasure by the Japanese government, and it has also become a treasure to fish tank and plant enthusiasts alike.  A. linnaei is a fresh water, filamentous green algae.  Though it is mostly found as free-floating filament or growing on rocks, its popularity is due to the rare existence of its perfect, spherical form.  The sales of artificially created [...]

Read more...

The Unique Biology of Cladophora

The bottom of Lake Akan is inhabited by miraculously spherical algae called "marimo." These are the National Treasure of Japan.  Although marimo and its related species are observed in the lakes of several European countries and in some other lakes in Japan, only in Lake Akan marimo grow 20 to 30 centimeters (8 to 12 inches) in diameter and have a spherical surface that is beautifully soft and smooth like velvet.These "moss balls" are the latest craze to hit [...]

Read more...

The Origins of the “Marimo” Name of Cladophora Aegagropila

Legend has it that long ago the daughter of a chief from a tribe living near Lake Akan in Japan fell in love with a commoner.  When her parents opposed the union, the couple ran away but tragically fell into the lake and sunk to the bottom.  According to the myth, it was here that they turned into Marimo moss balls and why this plant is now known as a token of love, affection and good luck. The Meaning of [...]

Read more...

The Smallest and Largest Marimo Sizes

A Marimo ball is a type of algae that is a native to Lake Akan in Japan. Although these balls have been observed to grow to some degree in freshwater lakes and ponds in European countries and some other lakes in Japan; only in this particular lake do they grow to be a noticeable size in perfect spherical shape. Colonies of such balls are only known to form in Iceland, Scotland, Japan and Estonia. A very easy plant, these [...]

Read more...

The Natural Environmental Conditions of Wild Marimo

Locale:  Japan, Iceland, Estonia, Scotland Marimo Moss Balls, also known as Moss Balls, Algae Balls, Lake Ball, Marimo Moss Ball, Japanese Moss Ball, Cladophora sauteri, or Cladophora aegagropila, are exotic and beautiful. They can make a beautiful addition to your aquarium or decorative pond. Dr. Anton E. Sauter, a botanist from Austria, first discovered Marimo in 1823. His find was located in Lake Zeller, Austria. Hokkaidō: Japan’s northernmost island, is home to some of the country’s most unique national treasures. It [...]

Read more...

A Brief History of the Marimo, and Some Fun Facts

The Aegagropila linnaei, otherwise known as the Marimo Moss Ball, is a species of filamentous green algae that is known for its unique shape and smooth complexion. This plant is very popular in Japan that it is considered a National Treasure. They even name it and take care of them as pets. Origins: The Marimo Moss Balls were first discovered in 1823 by the Dr. Anton Sauter, an Austrian Botanist, in Lake Zeller, Austria and was soon discovered in Japan by [...]

Read more...