Lycopodiums Now within the Genus Huperzia and The way to Take care of Them

How do you take care of lycopodiums? (Now within the genus huperzia) These crops are so bizarre and superb. I first noticed a Lycopodium (Huperzia) in Elvin McDonald’s e book, The New Houseplant (web page 45). It was an image of a florist’s window in New York with certainly one of these crops hanging in it. There was nothing to inform me what it was, because it was within the background of the image. I liked all of it the identical.

My lycopodiums

The following time I noticed it was at an area greenhouse and I parted with some huge cash and purchased it. It was fairly a big hanging plant. I hung it in my sunroom, however sadly, it was too sizzling, it dried out, and I misplaced it. I used to be so bummed. 

Know Your Plant

That is an instance of the significance of realizing what your crops want earlier than putting them in your house. If I had researched it first, I’d have identified it didn’t need to dry out and prefers elevated humidity.

my lycopodium/huperzia under lights
My Lycopodium (Huperzia) on the counter 2014

My second lycopodium

So, the following time, I purchased a small one although it was nonetheless costly. For a very long time, it was on my counter the place I made certain it by no means dried out and the humidity was excessive. I purchased it the summer season of 2013, and it took over a yr to double in dimension. (See image above.) These aren’t the fastest-growing crops.

Not a real fern

Although the frequent title, tassel fern would lead you to consider they’re ferns, they aren’t. They’re spore-producing crops like ferns and are distantly associated. Those we’re discussing immediately are epiphytic, however there are terrestrial ones as nicely, however not as straightforward to develop.

The tassel fern title comes from the looks of their spore-bearing appendages that hold from the top of the brances like tassels. I’ve by no means had one on my plant.

They like moist, humid situations and don’t tolerate drying out for lengthy, thus the rationale my first one is lifeless. Lycopodium comes from the Greek lukos, wolf, and podion, foot. They’re also called floor pines or creeping cedar.

Matthaei Botanical Backyard Lycopodium

Once I noticed this at Matthaei Botanical Gardens in Ann Arbor, I used to be much more enamored with this plant. I imply, have a look at that!

Lycopodiums at Mathaei Botanical Garden
This can be a Lycopodium (Huperzia) squarrosum at Matthaei Botanical Gardens

Longwood Gardens Lycopodiums (Huperzia)

Once I walked into the fern hall at Longwood Gardens in Pennsylvania in 2012 and noticed a lot of them, I used to be blown away. (I used to be already ecstatic to be there!)

There have been huge specimens hanging from the ceiling. Wow! The next are photos of these. There are lots of varieties, however I couldn’t learn the tags and am unsure about them.

Care of Lycopodiums/Huperzias

By no means allow them to dry out. This I’ve discovered from expertise. Mine is rising within the west window and appears to find it irresistible and I by no means let it dry out. My plant which I purchased in 2013 has turn into a big plant.

Once I go away for per week or so, I ensure my husband is aware of to not let that plant dry out. As massive as it’s now, it might be costly to exchange. And I’d be upset and unhappy if it died.

Native habitat of lycopodiums

Thse crops are from tropical African, Polynesia, Australia, and Asia. The epiphytic sorts develop on different crops. They stay the place it’s heat and humid and so would favor to be that method in our properties. They like to not dry out, however don’t need to be standing in water, both.


I’ve mine to the facet of a west window. A part of the plant is in entrance of the window, so I flip it usually so ita will get even mild. These epiphytic crops wouldn’t wish to be in full solar, comparable to a south window would supply.

Potting medium

Once I purchased this plant, it was in a 4″ pot in common potting medium. Because it has grown, I’ve moved it up in pot dimension a few occasions, utilizing a well-drained potting combine. It Is difficult to maintain up with the water, so I’ll up-pot it once more this spring. This time, although, I’ll add some orchid bark to the combination for added aeration.

My pal’s lycopodiums

The following time I noticed Lycopodiums/huperzia was at a pal’s greenhouse. He had 3 totally different species and I really like them! The images of his crops are under. I haven’t seen these ones on the market, however haven’t regarded on-line. I’m certain you could possibly discover them.

I hope you discover certainly one of these crops and add it to your houseplant assortment. It actually is a superb, quirky plant and certainly one of my favorites. After rising it for 10 years and getting it to dimension, I’d be very unhappy to lose it.

Have an incredible week, plant associates!


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