Japanese moss ball as a home pet?

Japanese moss ball

Would you like to have a pet but don’t have the time to care for it? Are you scared that your pet would suffer because of that? Then get a Japanese moss ball. It is the ideal choice. Well, it is not a real pet as we know it, but it is an interesting plant. You hardly have to care for it. You just need to water it and that is it. No “feeding”. It will also last for a long time, with a little care that is.

The world-famous green algae

Japanese moss ball is a type of green algae usually found in Iceland, Austria, Scotland and the island of Hokkaido. It is round and grows very slowly. It lives on photosynthesis. You can also grow it at home, in your aquarium as a great decorative plant.

Japanese moss ball can last for decades

Aegagropila linnaei is a very undemanding plant and it can easily go several days without water. If you want to keep it nice and round you should roll it in your hands under a gentle stream of cold water. You should also turn it occasionally. It can live in your aquarium with fish, in a garden pond or in any similar container.

Japanese moss ball

Photo: Commons.wikimedia.org


Japanese moss ball loves cold water, so do not let the sun shine on it. The best water is from a brook or perhaps a lake, natural water of course. If you don’t have natural water, boiled tap water will do. If you keep moss balls in a small container, do not forget to change the water often, as it heats up faster and may go bad quickly. In any case, you should change the water in any container every two weeks. You can do it more frequently of course. In summer, it is a good idea is to add an ice cube to the container to cool the water down a bit, or put the container in your refrigerator for a while.

Colour changes

Never let the sun shine directly on Japanese moss ball and never leave it too close to a heater for example. The sun can easily burn the plant creating brown spots on it. The ball should be nice and green. If it changes colour, it may be a sign that it lacks cold water. If you moss ball looks unhealthy, you can give it a regeneration bath – by rinsing it under clean cold water and by adding clean cold water to the container. The container must be clean of course. Japanese moss balls come in different sizes, it only depends on your space and your requirements.

Preview photo: Commons.wikimedia.org

Radek Štěpán

Gardening is my hobby, I have a lot of experience and I am happy to share it.


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