Cultivating Kokedama
DesignSTL|January/February 2021
Chris Mower of White Stable Farms discovered the Japanese style of gardening in Italy. Now, he’s bringing it to St. Louis.
MEGAN MERTZ

CHRIS MOWER IS a kokedama evangelist. Kokedama means “moss ball” in Japanese. It describes a method of wrapping plant roots in a ball of sphagnum moss instead of potting them. Nearly any houseplant—bromeliads, succulents, orchids, even small trees—can be turned into a kokedama. And Chris will tell you all about it. That’s why he founded White Stable Farms in July 2019: to introduce the concept to the St. Louis area.

“It’s a different presentation style and a different look, whether it’s on a tabletop or whether it’s hanging,” says Chris, who learned about the style while visiting Milan, Italy. At the time, he was planning to retire from a career in the insurance industry and looking for a new challenge. He studied horticulture in college and loves to garden, so he was excited to finally pursue that passion.

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