Marimo responds well to bathing

One of my marimo is a little sick, and is in its own container. It has brown patches of algae growing on it, and was not pearling like the other two. On Friday, I decided to give it a bath, rinsing it under running water, rubbing the brown algae gently (to try to remove it), replaced with fresh water, and put the container under more direct light than it was getting before. And this morning, I walked in to some intense pearling action (it’s so bubbly it’s floating!):

marimo_brown_pearling marimo_brown_pearling
So he’s recovering, I think!

Here are the healthy ones (not pearling at the time of picture):

marimo_healthy marimo_healthy

March 6, 2007. pets. 9 Comments.


  1. jfer replied:

    haha I love how you include them under “pets.” nice marimo jar!

    March 9th, 2007 at 3:54 am. Permalink.

  2. sarah replied:

    how did you get a marimo?

    March 18th, 2007 at 3:57 pm. Permalink.

  3. Anita replied:

    I got them at, based in Massachusetts. Here’s the link to the exact item:
    They take a little while to send ’em to you (~2 weeks), but they arrived safe and healthy.

    March 20th, 2007 at 12:37 pm. Permalink.

  4. Elle replied:

    someone said marimo can flatten out if there isn’t much current. do they maintain their shape very well in jars?

    November 26th, 2007 at 12:24 am. Permalink.

  5. Anita replied:

    Elle, I can’t give a definitive answer on this, but from my own marimo, I can say that they grow so slowly that they appear to keep their shape pretty well, even when there is no current. I have had mine sitting in still water for almost a year, and they don’t look significantly different than the photos in this post. I think if you leave them like that for years, though, they will become noticeably asymmetric.

    November 26th, 2007 at 4:05 pm. Permalink.

  6. Elaine replied:

    Hi, I came across this when i googled for brown marimo… My marimo is turning brown :( I’ve just bathed it like you mentioned and I hope it won’t die… But, I’ve NEVER seen my marimo pearl! It’s not dead though, it just doesn’t pearl… any idea why?

    February 27th, 2008 at 3:33 am. Permalink.

  7. Anita replied:

    These are the two things that make my marimo pearl:

    1. Light level: I have a 75-100W white light on them almost all the time.
    2. Recently cleaned: light rinse, gentle squeeze while rinsing, plus fresh, cool water. You might do this as often as every three days.

    February 27th, 2008 at 10:42 am. Permalink.

  8. Ben replied:

    can marimo survive under fluorescent office lights?

    February 19th, 2009 at 6:01 pm. Permalink.

  9. Anita replied:

    Yes, I think marimo can survive under fluorescent office lights. They won’t be as happy as they would be under natural light, but mine did fine for the month or two when they only had my fluorescents once their own bulb had blown out. If you see them having trouble, even a small incandescent lamp nearby could help them out a bit. Good luck!

    February 19th, 2009 at 6:22 pm. Permalink.

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