Selaginella kraussiana – Secrets of the Golden Clubmoss

Though technically a plant somewhere between a moss and a fern, Selaginella kraussiana ‘Aurea’ is still a great carpeting option for terrariums. Native to the African continent, it forms dense carpets of (somewhat unruly) feathery leaves.

Unlike other terrarium mosses, Golden Clubmoss has a irregular growth pattern, and can exhibit vigorous growth under ideal terrarium conditions.

The ‘Aurea’ cultivar is a beautiful addition to terrariums with its characteristic vivid green leaves and golden tips.

Selaginella Kraussiana 'Aurea' (Golden Clubmoss)

Where to Buy Selaginella kraussiana ‘Aurea’

See the links below to purchase from reputable terrarium plant shops and marketplaces (may include affiliate links). 

US – See on Etsy
UK – See on Etsy

Golden Clubmoss Care & Growth

Plant TypeMoss
LightingLow – high indirect light
Temperature55-80°F (12-26°C)
WateringRegular, even moisture
HumidityMedium – high humidity (50-90%)
Growth1-2 inches


Although not technically a moss, Golden Clubmoss has similar lighting requirements to most terrarium mosses. It’ll thrive in bright, indirect light. But it’ll also quickly scorch in direct sunlight.


Selaginella kraussiana ‘Aurea’ likes constant moisture, and will grow rapidly with a ready supply. On the flip side, it will very quickly suffer if allowed to dry out.


Needing a consistent supply of moisture, Golden Clubmoss will readily grow in a substrate that retains water, but also drains well.

Temperature & Humidity

Selaginella kraussiana ‘Aurea’ thrives in a closed terrarium environment with a high temperature and relative humidity. It can tolerant a reasonable range of temperatures, but it’s particularly sensitive to humidity levels.


Under the right conditions, Golden Clubmoss will rapidly form a thick carpet. Though, it can have quite a irregular growth pattern, and can benefit from the occasional trim to keep its size and shape in check.


Selaginella kraussiana is a relatively easy plant to propagate. New plants can be propagated by dividing rhizomes or cutting rooted stems.

Varieties & Similar Plants

There are over 700 species of Selaginella (including the gorgeous Peacock Moss Selaginella uncinata) but only a few notable cultivars of kraussianaSelaginella kraussiana ‘Variegata’ is characterized by its “frosted” appearance, and Selaginella kraussiana ‘Brownii’ is prized for its frilly mounds of leaves.

Common Problems

If left unchecked, the vigorous growth of Selaginella kraussiana can cause it to overgrow a terrarium. The occasional pruning session will help keep its growth in line with your other terrarium plants.