Fgf signaling plays crucial roles in morphogenesis. Fgf19 is required for zebrafish forebrain development. Here, we examined the roles of Fgf19 in the formation of the lens and retina in zebrafish. Knockdown of Fgf19 caused a size reduction of the lens and the retina, failure of closure of the choroids fissure, and a progressive expansion of the retinal tissue to the midline of the forebrain. Fgf19 expressed in the nasal retina and lens was involved in cell survival but not cell proliferation during embryonic lens and retina development. Fgf19 was essential for the differentiation of lens fiber cells in the lens but not for the neuronal differentiation and lamination in the retina. Loss of nasal fate in the retina caused by the knockdown of Fgf19, expansion of nasal fate in the retina caused by the overexpression of Fgf19 and eye transplantation indicated that Fgf19 in the retina was crucial for the nasal-temporal patterning of the retina that is critical for the guidance of retinal ganglion cell axons. Knockdown of Fgf19 also caused incorrect axon pathfinding. The present findings indicate that Fgf19 positively regulates the patterning and growth of the retina, and the differentiation and growth of the lens in zebrafish.