The Flamingo Pond

gardening, weird plants, and yard art

Marimo moss balls for ponds and aquariums

Share:

marimo moss balls
The use of marimo in ponds and aquariums can be beneficial to dealing with algae blooms and green water issues.If you have a green water problem, consider using marimo as a means to bring your green water under control -- naturally!

As you probably know, chemicals are a short-term solution which does not address the reason for repeated algae blooms. You don't have to resort to chemicals to handle string algae and related messes in your tank or pond. Instead, try this natural solution to your algae issues: marimo. By adding marimo to your pond or aquarium, these "moss balls" can consume the nutrients preferred by undesirable types of algae. This one simple addition to your aquatic environment can aid in the control of green water without the use of chemicals.

What are marimo?

Marimo are Aegagropila linnaei, which is a part of the Cladophoraceae family of filamentous green algae. This type of algae occurs naturally in certain freshwater northern hemisphere lakes. Marimo are the green so-called "moss ball"-type algae which grows into a spherical shape as it forms into large colonies. Oddly enough they are hollow inside with no interior support structure. They generally grow at a rate of 5mm per year.

They can be found in Scotland, Estonia, Iceland, and Japan. In their natural environments, marimo grow under the chilly low-light conditions at the bottom of the lakes. However, like most green plants and algae they cannot survive freezing.

 

Care of your marimo

Marimo: a living pet rock

Marimo is a living plant which requires proper care to grow and be happy. Fortunately they are low-maintenance "pets".

Marimo and other aquatic life

While marimo are happy in the company of their own kind, they can also do well in a tank or pond with new friends. Playful fish such as bettas like to play with any marimo placed into their tanks. Fish, snails, and other creatures tend to not feast on resident marimo. In my experience only plecos will bother trying to eat them, so do not place them into tanks with plecos unless you would like to lose your marimo.

My marimo changed colours! Now what?

A happy healthy marimo is green. Under normal circumstances they don't change colours.

How to make a marimo aquarium

Mossquarium instructions

As a fun and trendy project, make a moss aquarium for a unique and interesting display:

  • Fill the bottom of a clear glass bowl or vase with colourful glass pebbles.
  • For some added decoration, include small sea shells or small pieces of driftwood.
  • Add filtered and dechlorinated (not tap) water.
  • Drop your marimo into the water. If you are using a bigger bowl, feel free to include several marimo of varying sizes for added interest.
  • Keep your moss aquarium out of direct sunlight to mimic its native environment, and watch your marimo moss ball grow!
 

Your moss aquarium will require a complete water change at least twice a month depending on the size of the bowl. Top up the water level as often as is needed to keep your marimo fully submerged. Do not let the marimo dry out as it won't recover very well on its own.

Stupid.com Self Stirring Mug
Advertisement