Taxiphyllum barbieri

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Java moss

Taxiphyllum barbieri is a beautiful aquatic plant, which forms beautiful compact bushes like moss, and is in fact called “Java moss”.

It has been confused for years with Vesicularia dubyana, the “Singapore moss”, from which it can be distinguished easily: it has a less compact habit and grows a little faster. Not rarely spore capsules – sporogon – appear on this moss, also when it grows submerged.

Submitted by
Benedetta Spelta
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Geographical region
Southeastern Asia
Drainage Basin
Bay of Bengal
River catchment
Water body type
Water body name
Toungup (Taunggok)
Water body part
Water body course
Middle course
Water body: tributary of
Tributary name
Type locality
Conservation status/IUCN Red List
Not Evaluated (NE)
Listed in CITES

Water Chemistry

Water information

Water type
Fresh water
Water color
Clear water
Water transparency
Concentration of sediments
Water temperature
18-25 °C
Water flow/curent

Chemical parameters

6-18 mg/l
4-8 mg/l
Dissolved Oxygen


Plant form
Plant type
Plant size
3-10 cm
Plant growth rate
Plant light demand
Aquarium equipment

Moss provides a natural, aging look and can give life even to a bare and plain tank.

You can easily attach Javamos with a piece of fishing line until it has attached to the substrate. You can even attach it to a fine grid or mesh to create a complete moss wall or carpet. Just put the moss between two layers of gauze, the moss will naturally grow in between. To facilitate containment pruning, it is useful to anchor it on objects that are easy to take out of the tank.

It is especially popular as spawning substrate and is incredibly helpfull for raising fry, to protect them from cannibalistic adults. Java moss, like many other mosses, provide food for the newly formed fry, which can be challenging to feed. Another benefit for newly formed fry from Java Moss is increased oxygen levels in the aquarium water.

Some shrimp like to feed on the miniature leaf like structures known as phyllids.

Java Moss originates from Southeast Asia and is found in the Philippines, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Singapore and Vietnam. It grows frequently in humid places, mostly above water on rocks, fallen tree trunks and along the banks of rivers and streams.

Plant care

Better known as Java moss, it is a very robust plant, which grows well even with low lighting. However, it is preferable to avoid placing it in full light to prevent the algae from covering it and promoting its death.

Java moss is recommended for beginners. It takes root on any surface, from driftwood to stones, forming a beautiful and very useful carpet.


Water care

Taxiphyllum barbieri is very undemanding and adapts to a wide range of water parameters. Naturally looks best under strong light and a good nutrient supply.