Microsorum pteropus - Java Fern

6 In stock
Aquarium Plants
28.00 AUD 15.00 AUD
Java Fern Description Java Fern is a member of the Polypodiaceae family which has more than 60 different genera. Microsorum is a genus within this family, which includes over 50 species of tropical ferns. Perhaps one of the most popular species within the Microsorum genus is Microsorum pteropus, otherwise known as Java...
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Java Fern


Java Fern is a member of the Polypodiaceae family which has more than 60 different genera. Microsorum is a genus within this family, which includes over 50 species of tropical ferns.

Perhaps one of the most popular species within the Microsorum genus is Microsorum pteropus, otherwise known as Java Fern.

It originated from South East Asia and is a jungle plant that typically grows on rocks, the ground and around tree trunks along the waterline of streams and waterfalls. It also grows in tropical rain forests, like grass. It can grow whilst both fully submerged or partially submerged.

Java Fern has been a hobby for a long time, and over the years new varieties have been developed. The most popular ones you’ll find in fish stores are narrow leaf, needle leaf, trident and windelov.

Java Fern is a traditional green aquarium plant and is made up of two main components; rhizome and leaves.

The rhizomes act as an anchor and are dark brown hair-like strings that attach themselves to many different surfaces.

The leaves are very hardy and have a leathery texture in a range of unique shapes, from bushy to spiky. It comes in a variety of greens, from medium to dark green. Typically, the higher the lighting, the darker the green. Some mature leaves develop a few black/brown tiny circular bumps (one method of propagation which we’ll discuss shortly), and occasionally have a few black veiny lines going through the leaves.

The plant can reach heights of about 13.5 inches and can reach 6-8 inches in width. This makes it perfect for a wide variety of tanks, from large community tanks to heavily planted tanks or even a show tank.

The original plant has variants that impact the size and leaf shape. We’ll take a look at some of the most popular aquarium varieties; however, there are other less known varieties available too.

  • Narrow Leaf Java Fern: This plant has narrow leaves, which grow at a steeper angle than the regular Microsorum pteropus. Leaves grow to around 4-8 inches and the plant can grow as high as 12 inches.
  • Needle Leaf Java Fern: This plant has even thinner leaves, and is smaller than the narrow leaf plant. It can grow to heights of 6 inches. True needle leaf Java is fairly rare in the trade.
  • Trident Java Fern: This is one of the more uncommon variants, it has feathery lobed leaves with 2-5 lobes on each side of its leaves. It is shorter than the narrow leaf, but grows quicker, and has more forks in each leave.
  • Windelov Java Fern: A unique variant with finely branched leaf tips. It usually grows to around 8 inches tall.

The benefit of Plants

EASY TO PLANTING  simply throw it into your water. Really - even if you just drop it in, it'll start growing. Java Fern will thrive while floating, or the current may allow it to attach to something that its roots can hold onto. Simply take the piece of décor you want the fern attached too and make a simple bead of glue. The only thing to watch out for is that you don't bury the rhizome (the twig-like portion of the plant). All the roots and leaves extend out of this rhizome. A great benefit to this plant is that it does not require a substrate, making Java Fern an idea for bare bottom tanks.


NOT PICKY FOR LIGHTING - Java Fern isn't picky about which spectrum of lighting you're using or even the number of watts. However, Java Fern will do best if provided with a 6700k spectrum bulb. Any range from low to medium-high light is perfect for this plant. At the very high-end range of light, you can actually burn or melt it. So resist the urge to recreate the Sahara Desert over your tank.  Java Fern can live off such little light that many aquarists have forgotten it for several weeks in a bucket and it still lives!


FAST AND EASY TO REPRODUCING Tiny Java Ferns are formed at the edge of the leaves. Once they mature they drop off and attach themselves to wherever they should land. You can also break leaves off and let them float in the aquarium. The plant even has an emergency contingency – if it starts to die it immediately produces new plantlets, sometimes as many as 20 babies per leaf. This is a great method for getting ready to set up a new tank or propagating it to give to a new fish friend.


FISHES LOVER - Aquarium fish love to swim through these plants. Java Ferns can create an ever-evolving jungle for them to swim in. Most fish do not like the taste of Java Fern, so even many plant-eating fish will not eat it. The leaves are also very thick and rugged. They can take a beating from a large cichlid or some goldfish who just like to play with them.

Care Guidelines:

  • Temperature: 68-82oF
  • pH: 6.0-7.5
  • Lighting: Low to moderate
  • Aquarium Placement: Any
  • Care: Easy
  • Suitable for Beginner: Yes
  • Can Live in Emersed: Yes



We can’t ship Livestock and Live Plants to WA and TAS due to State Restrictions. Kindly check out our DOA and other policies before purchase!!

Other things to consider before placing an order:

* Check to see if your tank has enough space.
* Ensure your tank is fully cycled.
* Ensure your new livestock is compatible tank mates for any other fish you currently have (in terms of habitat, species, requirements, temperament, and size)
* Ensure that your water parameters, habitat and temperature are suitable for the species you want to introduce.
* Do not stock your tank too quickly, or suddenly a large influx of fish can unbalance your water parameters that will affect the water quality.
* Do not feed your new fish for 24hrs. They need time to settle in and feel at home. Feeding them too quickly puts their health at risk, and it can even affect your water quality. If you have existing fish in your aquarium, feeding them before releasing the new fish is a good idea.
* Don’t be alarmed if, upon arrival, your fish, shrimp or snail look pale or lethargic. This is normal behaviour while in transit, and they should return to full colour and vibrancy after settling into their new home for a few days.

Also, be aware that livestock often gets stress and lose their colours after the long travel to you, this often happened to most livestock ( shrimps, guppies, plecos, and so on, kindly make sure you have the right set up, the aquarium must be fully cycled with the ideal parameters. Fishes and shrimps will often take from 3-7 days to fully adapt to the new home. If you have any concerns with your set up kindly talk to us or check out some online tutorials before purchase.

At Micro Aquatic shop, we strive to provide excellent service and high-quality products, any concerns kindly contact us asap and often we will get back to you in a few hours during working hours. We do not accept claims when the livestock entered your aquarium as there might be so many factors that can affect the wellbeing of the livestock, on our part we can guarantee that we are always sending out healthy and quality fishes, plants and shrimps to you.

What to Expect from Us

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Customer Reviews

Based on 10 reviews
Willie Lindner

Microsorum pteropus - Java Fern

Julie P
Quality product, great service!

All plants and livestock delivered in good condition and timely manner. Would recommend highly.


Really nice fern. Looks good in our tank and the fishes seem really happy with it

Udi Pathiraja
Trident Java fern and Java Moss

Great plants free from snails and other pests. Packed well and delivered fast.

Sarah Jones

Microsorum pteropus - Java Fern

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