Java Fern – A Welcome Addition To Your Pond Or Aquarium!

Updated September 2018

The Java Fern, or Microsorum pteropus to give its proper scientific name, is often considered to be a collective term for a huge variety of plants.


In truth the java fern is one single species of aquatic plants. However because of the sheer variety of shapes and sizes that are found in the leaves of the fern, you could be forgiven for thinking otherwise.


This is a type of plant where each individual specimen can look completely different to all of the others within its species.

Java fern
vegetation provides well being and a stimulant for your fish

In the wild waters of its native seas, the Microsorum pteropus can be found growing in large clumps. The fern will naturally attach itself to larger structures such as driftwood, rocks and reefs.

  • If you’re planning to put some of this hardy fern in your fish tank or aquarium, it’s worth noting that if you don’t place the Java fern plants next to something that they can latch onto and grow around, you can expect them to try and cling to the side of your tank. This can make cleaning the tank or even changing your fish tank, very difficult.
  • Rocks provide natural crevices for plants to root.

The java fern is a greatly variable and highly adaptable species of pond plant.

Where does Java fern originate?

The fern actually originates from the seas in and around South East Asia, and would be a common sight for all fish originating from that area. In one form or another, the java fern is commonplace right across the South East Asia region.


People who are especially interested in making their ponds or fish tanks resemble a natural environment for its inhabitants, would be well placed to take a look at the java fern in more detail.