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Planted IKEA bowl - is it a Wabi-Kusa or something else?

Ullalaaqua

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Hei!
Five months ago I scaped this little bown with some trimmings and leftovers I had after planting. The soil is Tropicas aquarium soil and hardscape is made of frodo stones and small redmoor twigs. It took quite awhile for it to grow well, but now I just love it. I have some isobods and springtails there as a maintenance crew.

B96974BB-4D65-48A7-B200-CD30A6B98D6E.jpeg

There is no water in it. I just keep it moist by misting and putting a lid on it if the air is too dry.
The question though, is it a Wabi-Kusa or a terrascape? All the plants are aquatic.

5401D1FF-BC96-42F9-80F7-6D7F6E011370.jpeg

Plantlist:
Bucephalandra Brownie Ghost
Ludwigia palustris ’super red’
Vesicularia ferriei Weeping moss
Micranthemum sp Montecarlo
Hydrocotyle Tripartita ’mini’
 

dcurzon

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I'm not sure of "the rules" but I think you can call it anything you like :)
Maybe start your own name - ikeakusa

I like it a lot
Inspired, I've just dug out a Poundland punch bowl
IMG_20210628_184142.jpg
3 small lava rocks with Java moss
1 decorative puece of slate I found outside
Small sprig of hydrocotyle
Half a dozen blades of DHG
1 small cut of super red
:)
 

sparkyweasel

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Wabi kusa means something like 'beautiful plant'. But it sounds so much better (and more expensive) because it's Japanese and exotic. If you come up with a Finnish name it will probably sound great to us Brits. And maybe to the Japanese too. :)
 

Ullalaaqua

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Looks great! I wouldn't get too bogged down with ID's, if forced to choose I'd say terrascape though
Thank you! I’m like that though. Get a question in my head and then can’t get peace before I know the answer. But you’re right. I’m just gonna call it the never-ending-bioactive-dry-start 😂

Wabi kusa means something like 'beautiful plant'. But it sounds so much better (and more expensive) because it's Japanese and exotic. If you come up with a Finnish name it will probably sound great to us Brits. And maybe to the Japanese too. :)
Haha the finnish version would be something like ”malja puutarha” which just sounds boring to me (straight translation: ’a bowl garden’). And if I translated ”beautiful plant” it would be ”kaunis kasvi” and in Finland no-one would take it seriously 😂 There is a certain vibe in japanese names to things. It doesn’t work in other languages the same way.
 

zozo

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It looks very nice... 😘 And it is what it is... :) Wabi Kusa actually has no commercial definition but it has as an art form more of a philosophical cultural definition, one that can not easily be translated. For that, you need to go to Japan and look up and try to figure out what Wabi-Sabi actually is and which rules to follow to achieve it.

Wabi Kusa where Kusa as a word simply means Grass.

But combined with Wabi, the word kusa becomes less literally and gets a more philosophical and poetic meaning as said above a plant in any form. Where Wabi probably stands for the Beauty, Serenity, imperfection, simplicity, etc. of nature.

I believe it was the great Takashi Amano that introduced and popularized (commercialized) the term and art form Wabi Kusa to the aquascaping communities outside Japan. And he solely used aquatic/bog plants in his creations, but I guess this simply was a choice and not a fixed rule.

There are other similar Japanese art forms such as Kokedama which is translated as Moss ball. But then a creation with plants planted on a stand-alone moss ball without the use of a pot standing or hanging on ropes. But also this can't be translated simply literally and has a deeper philosophical meaning.

I guess since it probably will stay a mystery to us where the actual boundaries lay if there are any rules at all. Then we could assume, with how far we are able to understand the philosophy behind it then in a sense if it is Wabi Kusa for you, it is Wabi Kusa. :)
 
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Tim Harrison

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Wabi-kusa typically consists of a ball of substrate covered in plants and placed in a glass receptacle.

Terrarium is usually a sealed glass container in which plants are grown in soil allowing the creation of a small scale water cycle. It can be opened for maintenance.

Terrascape is used to describe the creation of an existing natural landscape often within an aquarium. Formed by combining terra, latin for earth, and scape, meaning scenery.

The above terms seem to be increasingly used interchangeably which I guess isn't always helpful, but either way they're all a little slice of nature in a "glass" and like Marcel mentions the philosophy is the same, so take your pick...

Your creation is beautiful btw :)
 

zozo

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A few years ago a German team of Wabi-Kusa enthusiasts from the Flowgrow community launched an international contest and to make it more accessible to the public didn't name it Wabi-Kusa but named it "MiniSwamps" afaik they only have a Facebook page and no website.

Miniswamp actually is a perfect term for any kind of creation with Bog plants to finally put all Wabi-Kusa confusion aside. :)
 

Tim Harrison

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According to Google that would translate as something along the lines of "minichua numachi" in Japanese.
Still not quite captured the romantic feel of Wabi-kusa or Wabi-sabi but it sounds better than mini swamp :p
 

zozo

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According to Google that would translate as something along the lines of "minichua numachi" in Japanese.
Still not quite captured the romantic feel of Wabi-kusa or Wabi-sabi but it sounds better than mini swamp :p

It absolutely does... In a way, European languages kinda keep sounding a bit culturally barbaric without any exotic and mysterious sway to it. Imagine the look on their face if somebody points to your Wabi-Kusa and asks "What is that?" and you answer with "Its grass serenity!"

Another one is "Keiryu" and no idea how they pronounce it but...
27797412_600546326949086_7370249655506580218_o.jpg


Stands for "Mountain stream", and that just doesn't sound right it has no flair to it.
 
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Ullalaaqua

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It looks very nice... 😘 And it is what it is... :) Wabi Kusa actually has no commercial definition but it has as an art form more of a philosophical cultural definition, one that can not easily be translated. For that, you need to go to Japan and look up and try to figure out what Wabi-Sabi actually is and which rules to follow to achieve it.
Wabi Kusa where Kusa as a word simply means Grass.
But combined with Wabi, the word kusa becomes less literally and gets a more philosophical and poetic meaning as said above a plant in any form. Where Wabi probably stands for the Beauty, Serenity, imperfection, simplicity, etc. of nature.
I believe it was the great Takashi Amano that introduced and popularized (commercialized) the term and art form Wabi Kusa to the aquascaping communities outside Japan. And he solely used aquatic/bog plants in his creations, but I guess this simply was a choice and not a fixed rule.
There are other similar Japanese art forms such as Kokedama which is translated as Moss ball. But then a creation with plants planted on a stand-alone moss ball without the use of a pot standing or hanging on ropes. But also this can't be translated simply literally and has a deeper philosophical meaning.
I guess since it probably will stay a mystery to us where the actual boundaries lay if there are any rules at all. Then we could assume, with how far we are able to understand the philosophy behind it then in a sense if it is Wabi Kusa for you, it is Wabi Kusa. :)Wabi-kusa typically consists of a ball of substrate covered in plants and placed in a glass receptacle.
Thank you @zozo 😊
I always thought that Wabi Kusa was something with emersed aquatic plants and water area. Not just the ball and then a wabi-kusa ball was a complitely different thing. I knew I was missing something here. The whole consept is very new to me, but i’m beginning to really like these different forms where you can use emersed aquatic plants ❤️
I actually have Takashi Amano’s Origin of Creation where he describes the birth of Wabi-Kusa. He says: ’Wabi-Kusa is a tiny forest that emerges in water. - - - What I wanted to produce were aquatic plants that anyone, from beginner to a veteran layout artist could grow in an aquarium without fail.’ I think the original idea has taken wings of it’s own 😄 Why didn’t I check the book before?
Terrarium is usually a sealed glass container in which plants are grown in soil allowing the creation of a small scale water cycle. It can be opened for maintenance.

Terrascape is used to describe the creation of an existing natural landscape often within an aquarium. Formed by combining terra, latin for earth, and scape, meaning scenery.

The above terms seem to be increasingly used interchangeably which I guess isn't always helpful, but either way they're all a little slice of nature in a "glass" and like Marcel mentions the philosophy is the same, so take your pick...

Your creation is beautiful btw :)
Thank you @Tim Harrison 💚
Yeah it’s confusing. Many people maje similar ”dry scapes” but the names they use can ve different every time.

A few years ago a German team of Wabi-Kusa enthusiasts from the Flowgrow community launched an international contest and to make it more accessible to the public didn't name it Wabi-Kusa but named it "MiniSwamps" afaik they only have a Facebook page and no website.

Miniswamp actually is a perfect term for any kind of creation with Bog plants to finally put all Wabi-Kusa confusion aside. :)
Oh yes! A miniswamp is deginetly perfect term for it. Thank you 😄
 

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zozo

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Oh yes! A miniswamp is deginetly perfect term for it. Thank you

Or as Tim suggests "Minichua Numachi" sounds a tad more intriguing... :)

And thanks for sharing that page from the book... I never did read it and didn't know that Amanosan actually was the inventor and also patented Wabi Kusa. I thought it was something rather ancient and that he only introduced the concept to his followers.

Even tho it still stays a mystery what it actually is because the story in the book contradicts itself a bit. With the last sentence he writes about it.
Knipsel.JPG


Doesn't it? Or it's simply a translation error? Who knows?

Maybe he had a lot of humor as well because depending on in what context the word Kusa is used I found out it can also mean as slang for something like LOL (Laughing Out Loud). But it never crossed my mind that this was the way it was meant in this concept. :)
 
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Ullalaaqua

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Or as Tim suggests "Minichua Numachi" sounds a tad more intriguing... :)

And thanks for sharing that page from the book... I never did read it and didn't know that Amanosan actually was the inventor and also patented Wabi Kusa. I thought it was something rather ancient and that he only introduced the concept to his followers.

Even tho it still stays a mystery what it actually is because the story in the book contradicts itself a bit. With the last sentence he writes about it.
View attachment 171308

Doesn't it? Or it's simply a translation error? Who knows?

Maybe he had a lot of humor as well because depending on in what context the word Kusa is used I found out it can also mean as slang for something like LOL (Laughing Out Loud). But it never crossed my mind that this was the way it was meant in this concept. :)
Yes I stopped to wonder this too. Could it be that Takashi Amano first thought of these as an alernative to planting a tank? Like even a beginner could get lush planted tank with using wabi-kusas underwater? That this was their original idea and in time it became something to use emersed too…

I heard he had a great sense of humor. So there could easily be douple meaning behind the name too 😄
 

zozo

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Thanks to @zozo 's "Keiryu" pic, I now know what to do with a slice of tree I've got lying about. Another project to find time to finish. :)
Cool! Hopefully, we will see a Journal!?

For more inspiration follow the Keiryu Company Facebook page. They make planted Paludarium concepts with fast-flowing water as if it was a mountain stream. They do it on tables as the picture shows and or patio ponds etc.

Here is the Vid.
 
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zozo

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Yes I stopped to wonder this too. Could it be that Takashi Amano first thought of these as an alernative to planting a tank? Like even a beginner could get lush planted tank with using wabi-kusas underwater? That this was their original idea and in time it became something to use emersed too…

I heard he had a great sense of humor. So there could easily be douple meaning behind the name too 😄

For the Japanese names and or words are not all simply words... Take for example the Iwagumi aquascape style which actually is Wabi-Sabi to the max. Iwa-Gumi is a Group or more to the point a Family of Rocks because all rocks have a meaningful and mythological relation to each other.

Then take what we call the Central or Mother stone is the Oya-ishi in Japanese.
Iwagumi-Aquascape-Stones.jpg


If you research Oyaishi then you stumble upon the Oya - Stone and this a very special vulcanic stone from a particular region in Japan. The Stone created by fire. This ancient type of stone (Ishi) is due to its beauty and rarety deeply rooted in Japanese cultural myths and its name received a philosophical meaning. In this art form, no matter what type of rock or stone is used the centre stone is the Oyaishi. The Hot one, the magical firestone that shines and stands out. And so on has each stone in the scape his own name with a mythological and historical background and meaning and purpose. It has a spirit and to choose the correct stone you need to see its spirit... For us, it is the central or the mother and a dead stone with nothing else to it.

I guess one needs to be an expert in Japanese History and mythology etc. to understand it all and get a grasp of what it all means and how it came to be and how and why certain names are given. We Europeans are likely not philosophical enough... In our society, it's a study and not a way of life. People that are philosophical are often described and as Floaty Nerds and being down to earth is often complimented. We kinda educate each other not to be too philosophical. :)

I guess the church and monotheism are to blame for that. All noses in the same direction.
 
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Ullalaaqua

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For the Japanese names and or words are not all simply words... Take for example the Iwagumi aquascape style which actually is Wabi-Sabi to the max. Iwa-Gumi is a Group or more to the point a Family of Rocks because all rocks have a meaningful and mythological relation to each other.

Then take what we call the Central or Mother stone is the Oya-ishi in Japanese.
Iwagumi-Aquascape-Stones.jpg


If you research Oyaishi then you stumble upon the Oya - Stone and this a very special vulcanic stone from a particular region in Japan. The Stone created by fire. This ancient type of stone (Ishi) is due to its beauty and rarety deeply rooted in Japanese cultural myths and its name received a philosophical meaning. In this art form, no matter what type of rock or stone is used the centre stone is the Oyaishi. The Hot one, the magical firestone that shines and stands out. And so on has each stone in the scape his own name with a mythological and historical background and meaning and purpose. It has a spirit and to choose the correct stone you need to see its spirit... For us, it is the central or the mother and a dead stone with nothing else to it.

I guess one needs to be an expert in Japanese History and mythology etc. to understand it all and get a grasp of what it all means and how it came to be and how and why certain names are given. We Europeans are likely not philosophical enough... In our society, it's a study and not a way of life. People that are philosophical are often described and as Floaty Nerds and being down to earth is often complimented. We kinda educate each other not to be too philosophical. :)

I guess the church and monotheism are to blame for that. All noses in the same direction.
I know what you mean. But still what you said about the philodophy behind an Iwagumi is something everyone making one should know in my opinion. It gives more meaning to it. Behind every form of art there is some ideology/philodophy that quides the artist. And I think the artist has to know the background in order to capture the right vibe.

I’ve never been a big fan of Iwagumis, but now after you opened more the philosophy behind it, i got facinated and look at them with different eyes. And I brobably will try to make one someday… after doing some more research 😊
 

zozo

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I know what you mean. But still what you said about the philodophy behind an Iwagumi is something everyone making one should know in my opinion. It gives more meaning to it. Behind every form of art there is some ideology/philodophy that quides the artist. And I think the artist has to know the background in order to capture the right vibe.

I’ve never been a big fan of Iwagumis, but now after you opened more the philosophy behind it, i got facinated and look at them with different eyes. And I brobably will try to make one someday… after doing some more research 😊

Thank you... It is indeed a very beautiful and intriguing culture... If there is a next time and a choice to be made I definitively would choose to be reborn in Japan. :)

I always was a huge Iwagumi fan, but can't create it... It's the most difficult to master. Not only in the philosophy but also in resources, the material is already difficult to find by itself if you don't live at the base of a rocky mountain. Where you can sit, look, watch and absorb for days. I already always fail at the LFS, there are non in an acceptable radius around my place that has something suitable. All they have is dull and overpriced... I guess outside Japan the best Iwagumis created are from the experienced old-timer fanatic scapers that gathered a garage full of hardscape materials over the years. Or the ones having a rather Big Spender budget.

So, yet I'm still far from a beginner... I'm still in the middle of studying a bit theoretically. :) One day I might get lucky and find some to practice with.
 

Ullalaaqua

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Thank you... It is indeed a very beautiful and intriguing culture... If there is a next time and a choice to be made I definitively would choose to be reborn in Japan. :)

I always was a huge Iwagumi fan, but can't create it... It's the most difficult to master. Not only in the philosophy but also in resources, the material is already difficult to find by itself if you don't live at the base of a rocky mountain. Where you can sit, look, watch and absorb for days. I already always fail at the LFS, there are non in an acceptable radius around my place that has something suitable. All they have is dull and overpriced... I guess outside Japan the best Iwagumis created are from the experienced old-timer fanatic scapers that gathered a garage full of hardscape materials over the years. Or the ones having a rather Big Spender budget.

So, yet I'm still far from a beginner... I'm still in the middle of studying a bit theoretically. :) One day I might get lucky and find some to practice with.
You should get the Origin of Creation to yourself. It explaines beautifully the born of Iwagumi-style and the philosophy behind the whole Nature Aquarium scene. I have read it before, but I quess it’s the kind of book you need to get back to everey once in awhile and every time you make new discoveries.

He says: ”Listen to the voice, watch the face, feel the heart of a stone. Arrange the hearts of stones by what you sense. That is what an Iwagumi is about.” 💚
5154C5B3-6F28-4061-B69E-78964384A043.jpeg

 
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