All About Clubmoss And Clubmoss Care That You Need To Know!

There is a lot about the clubmoss plant that still needs to be discovered or studied for understanding its importance even better but all of that apart, some of the species of this plant like the golden club moss can make up to be a great indoor plant. Having said that, we are going to detail out everything you must know about this plant along with a guide on clubmoss care.


About club moss


The plants that look like mini circular fans that you may have spotted on the ground in moist regions are popularly called the Clubmoss with many other names like the Witch Meal, Wolfs Claw, Ground Pine, Vegetable Sulfur, Shen Jin Cao, Licopodio, etc. A lot of cultures and experts have considered this plant as an herb with both advantages and disadvantages. A very interesting thing to note about club moss is that it belongs to one of the oldest land plants group on earth.

The clubmosses are evergreen plants that belong to the plant family called Lycopodiaceae and shares relation with more than 400 other species of vascular and seedless plants. All these plant species are spread over a vast region that includes the mountainous areas of the tropics and forests of the northern hemispheres. The native regions are responsible for the difference in the taxonomy of each species of this group.

Common physical characteristics of club mosses

The group of club moss plant is big and all of them share some common features. Here is a list of the defining ones:

  • The leaves of these plants can be like anything from needles, scales, clusters of conelike smaller leaves, etc.
  • The particular species that happen to have leaf clusters called Strobili also display small capsule-like structures in their center-base of the shape of a kidney.
  • Clubmosses are homosporous which means that they can only produce a single type of spore for their species.
  • The gametophytes of these plants are either subterranean or terrestrial and this depends upon the genera that any individual species belongs to. These gametophytes are different in shapes and sizes as per their categorical origins.

Information on the Genera and species distribution of clubmoss

The number of genera that have been recognized in the Lycopodiaceae plant family is 16 and this includes the following groups:

  • Lycopodium with 9-15 species
  • Lycopodiella with 15 species
  • Huperzia with around 10-15 species

Some of the major species that belong to the clubmoss family include:

  • Shining club moss aka Huperzia lucidula
  • Fir club moss aka Huperzia selago
  • Common club moss aka Lycopodium clavatum
  • Ground pine aka Dendrolycopodium obscurum
  • Alpine club moss aka Diphasiastrum alpinum
  • Pygmy club moss aka Phylloglossum drummondii

Uses of the clubmoss plant

With its herb nature, the most common use of this plant has been in the making of medicines but there is no scientific support for the success rates or even actual use. People have been supposedly using it for treating various disorders of kidney, urine, bladder, stomach, etc. However, it is the range of side effects that this plant can cause:

  • Heart rate slows down
  • Blockage of the gastrointestinal tract
  • Lung issues
  • Blockage of urinary tract
  • Ulcers
  • Oral poisoning
  • Seizures

About the Spike moss or golden club moss

One of the very attractive species of the club moss group is the Spike moss which is also called the Golden moss due to the stunning range of colors it flaunts from gold to bright green. You might even come across a creamy white growth on some of these plants that give a frosty look to them. The botanical name of this golden moss plant is selaginellakraussiana and it has been a native of the sub-Saharan African region.

This is a very popular moss plant that is rather the only one that could make it to the category of houseplants. It is very easy to grow this plant and even maintain it for the great and long-blooming of the stunning foliage that it has. You can have this plant blooming in any kind of container and use that for decoration, gifting, or simply adding charm to the outdoor garden.

Method of growing the golden or spike club moss


As said already, it is not difficult to grow golden moss and there is only very little that you need to do.

Basic requirements of the plant

Here is a list of the essential for the spike moss plant:

  • The temperature range ideal for good growth of this plant is 50-80 degrees F. As it is a tropical plant, it can’t survive frost or temperature drops.
  • This plant only needs medium light conditions that include exposure to warmth but not to very high sunlight.
  • Any standard potting soil mix which is lightweight and soft in texture will be good enough for this plant. Make sure that the soil you are using is pest free and sterile too. It would be better to have some nutrients present in the soil right at the beginning.
  • Regarding the place, you can start the plant both in the garden outdoors or any type of pot for indoor spaces.

Method of propagating the plant

The better way to start this plant is, to begin with, a young sapling that you can get from any local store or garden. Take a container or pot and then fill it up with the prepared soil, leaving about two inches from the top of the pot empty. Make sure to have a hole in the pot for allowing the excess water to drain.

Make a cavity a little bigger than the root bulb of the plant brought and then press the plant followed by pressing the surrounding soil to the root ball firmly. Water the soil nicely and keep the plant in a medium sunny spot.

Caring for the plant

As easy it is to start the plant, the care required for great growth and longer life also won’t require you to put in many efforts. You will be good to go with these best selaginella care tips:

  • The repotting of the plant can be done once in two years within the same container by trimming the roots or changing the container for an even better spread.
  • The plant prefers constant moisture supply but not waterlogging as the roots will rot in that condition. Water only when the upper soil layer gets fully dry. Put enough water into the pot without letting it touching the foliage till the excess water runs out and that’s how proper watering of this plant can be ensured.
  • You can feed any of the available fertilizers only after making sure that their compositional nutrients are well suited for the plant foliage. Try the slow-release fertilizer and apply it once every season.
  • You can go free by pruning this plant to get the preferred shape and size as per your usage requirements. The removal of wilted and dead leaves ensures good health, better root growth, and great looks for the plant.


Thus, it becomes evident that you cannot grow every clubmoss plant for your house but the ones you can, will give you the best results for the purpose. The golden club moss is a great plant to add a detailed look to any space and you will only have to put the least effort into that.

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