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Growing Java Fern

Java ferns are hardy plants and very easy to grow and care for. They make perfect beginner plants and you should be able to grow java fern without much trouble even if it is your first aquarium. Growing java fern is possible in most water conditions, including brackish water, but they do not do well in marine water.

Buying Java fern

There are several different types of java ferns and all of them are easily cared for so you can decide to get whatever type you find most attractive or purchase a mix of different types. Only buy healthy plants with green leaves without algae and holes. It is possible to buy anything from small to huge plants. The java fern will adapt well to your aquarium regardless of size.

Location & Planting

Java fern will do well in almost any location in the tank. They do however do better attached to a substrate rather than planted in sand or gravel, and it is therefore recommended to put them on a rock, root or part of aquarium equipment. If you want them in an area where you only have sand, I recommend attaching them to small rocks and drop them onto the sand in the desired area. They can be attached using rubber bands or nylon wire.


Growing a java fern and caring for the plant is very easy. Some light and water is really all they need. They do well in low light conditions and there will usually be enough nutrients in the water for the fern. They need more nutrients in higher light conditions. For optimal growth you should provide your java fern with a decent amount of light, extra nutrients dissolved in the water and extra carbon-dioxide added to the water.

If your java fern stops growing you can try increasing the light or add nutrition. If the leaves are turning very light green, the plant is probably getting too much light and some shade is recommended.

For more info on growing java fern i recommend reading our main page.

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