Nomad Studio has created an out-of-this-world forest installation that floats 1,200 trees on the top of an inverted dome. The kokedama seedlings are planted on a hanging dome carved from a delicate metal mesh. This sustainable installation was displayed at the Philadelphia Flower Show this June, after which it was moved.

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Outdoor installation filled with suspended seedlings

A part of the project philosophy was to give this installation a second life. Kokedama Forest is now becoming a part of the collection at NorthPark Center in Dallas, Texas. In fact, the seedlings are being adopted by Tyler Arboretum in Delaware County. It is a historical organization whose mission is to preserve, enhance and share its heritage, collections and landscapes to create and inspire stewards of the natural world.

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Inverted dome with seedlings

Meanwhile, the designers say that this second act of Kokedama Forest is just as important as its initial installation at the Philadelphia Flower Show. This is because it completes the life cycle of the sculptural micro-woodland.

Suspended plants hanging

William E. Roberts and Laura Santín are founding partners of Nomad Studio. They then say that this project reflects on the hidden importance of soil dwellers and how their indissoluble partnership with plants creates a suitable habitat for all of us.

Beams holding up the kokedama forest

Additionally, the experience allows visitors to enter the micro woodland by a path that takes them between the levitating kokedamas. The seedlings display their relationship with soil by being raised up on a 7.5-foot-high three-dimensional metal structure. The structure also puts the soil on display and shows what is usually invisible — how plants anchor into the ground.

Path inside the installation

This assembly supporting the plants is then woven with steel to illustrate the blend of strength and delicacy that is implicit in all living networks, the designers say. The soil is undervalued despite being indispensable.

Aerial view of the installation with green grass surrounding

Nomad Studio says that kokedamas are a poetic materialization of the intimate relationship between soil and plants. They are also an inspiring blend of nature and art. Moreover, Kazumi Garden handcrafted the 1,200 kokedamas that are part of the ephemeral installation. Timber Forge Woodworks fabricated the metal structure. Pinelands Nursery, a specialist in native plants for reforestation, supplied the forestry seedlings.

“We always want our work to feel like it has a story to tell, and Kokedama Forest is an incredibly compelling way to communicate the importance of respecting the world around us, as well as underneath of us,” said Timber Forge co-founder Louie Andracchio. “The Nomad team’s vision for melding natural sculptures with man-made structures in an immersive experience makes you truly feel that people, plants, and the earth we all share, need each other to thrive.”

+ Nomad Studio

Images via Nomad Studio