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How Much Oxygen Does Cardinalis Aquarium Plant Produce?

Updated: March 18, 2023

Aquarium plants are not only aesthetically pleasing, but they also play a crucial role in maintaining the health of your aquatic ecosystem. One such plant is the Cardinalis aquarium plant, which is known for its vibrant red color and ability to thrive in a variety of aquarium conditions. One question that many aquarium enthusiasts have is how much oxygen does the Cardinalis aquarium plant actually produce? In this article, we will explore the answer to this question and provide some additional information about this popular aquatic plant.

Understanding the Role of Aquarium Plants

Before we dive into the specifics of the Cardinalis aquarium plant, it’s important to understand the role that plants play in an aquarium ecosystem. Aquarium plants are renowned for their ability to photosynthesize, which means they use sunlight to convert carbon dioxide into oxygen. This oxygen is then released into the water, which helps to maintain healthy oxygen levels for fish and other aquatic creatures.

In addition to producing oxygen, aquarium plants also provide a range of other benefits. They help to filter out toxins and pollutants from the water, reduce algae growth by competing for nutrients, and provide shelter and hiding places for fish.

The Cardinalis Aquarium Plant

The Cardinalis aquarium plant (Lobelia cardinalis) is a popular choice among aquarists due to its stunning red coloration and hardiness. It originates from North America and can be found growing in wetlands and along riverbanks.

In an aquarium setting, Cardinalis plants typically grow to around 20-30cm in height and develop long, slender stems with pointed leaves. They are relatively easy to care for and can thrive in a range of water conditions, although they prefer slightly acidic water with a pH of around 6.5-7.5.

Oxygen Production of the Cardinalis Aquarium Plant

So, how much oxygen does the Cardinalis aquarium plant actually produce? The answer to this question can vary depending on a range of factors, such as the plant’s size, age, and growing conditions.

However, as a general rule of thumb, it’s estimated that aquarium plants can produce around 2.4-3.6 milligrams of oxygen per hour per gram of plant material. This means that a small Cardinalis plant weighing around 10 grams could potentially produce between 24-36 milligrams of oxygen per hour.

Of course, the amount of oxygen produced by the Cardinalis plant will also depend on other factors such as the amount of light it receives, the quality of the water, and the presence of other plants and animals in the aquarium.

Benefits of Using Cardinalis Aquarium Plants

Aside from their ability to produce oxygen, Cardinalis aquarium plants offer a range of benefits for your aquarium ecosystem. Some of these benefits include:

  • Reducing Nitrate Levels: Cardinalis plants are known for their ability to absorb excess nutrients from the water, including nitrates. This helps to reduce the risk of algae growth and keeps your aquarium water clean and clear.
  • Providing Shelter and Hiding Places: The long stems and pointed leaves of Cardinalis plants provide excellent hiding places for fish and other aquatic creatures. This can help to reduce stress levels and promote natural behaviors.
  • Aesthetically Pleasing: Perhaps most importantly, Cardinalis plants are simply stunning to look at! Their vibrant red coloration adds a pop of color to any aquarium and can create a beautiful focal point.


How often should I fertilize my Cardinalis aquarium plant?

Cardinalis plants require regular fertilization in order to thrive. You should aim to fertilize your plant once per week using a liquid fertilizer specifically designed for aquarium use.

Can Cardinalis plants survive in low light conditions?

While Cardinalis plants prefer moderate to high light conditions, they can still survive in low light environments. However, in order to promote healthy growth and oxygen production, it’s best to provide them with adequate lighting.

Do I need to supplement CO2 for my Cardinalis plant?

While some aquarium plants require additional CO2 supplementation to thrive, Cardinalis plants do not typically require this. As long as they are provided with adequate lighting and regular fertilization, they should grow and produce oxygen without the need for additional CO2.


In summary, Cardinalis aquarium plants are an excellent choice for any aquatic enthusiast looking to add some color and diversity to their aquarium ecosystem. While the exact amount of oxygen produced by these plants can vary depending on various factors, they are known for their ability to photosynthesize and produce oxygen for fish and other aquatic creatures. Additionally, they offer a range of other benefits such as reducing nitrate levels and providing shelter for fish. Overall, the Cardinalis plant is a fantastic addition to any aquarium setup.

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