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What is the Origin of Cardinalis Aquarium Plant

Updated: May 4, 2022

If you are an aquarium enthusiast, then you may have come across the cardinalis aquarium plant. This plant is known for its beautiful red and green foliage, making it a popular choice among aquarists. In this article, we will explore the origin of the cardinalis aquarium plant and its growth requirements.

History of Cardinalis Aquarium Plant

The cardinalis aquarium plant is a member of the family Lythraceae and is native to South America. It was first discovered in the Rio Negro region of Brazil by a German botanist named Friedrich Sellow in the 19th century. The plant has since been introduced to other parts of South America, including Venezuela, Colombia, and Peru.

In the wild, the cardinalis aquarium plant grows in shallow waters along riverbanks and streams. It is a popular choice among aquarists due to its vibrant red color, which is thought to be an adaptation to attract pollinators such as hummingbirds and butterflies.

Appearance and Growth Requirements

The cardinalis aquarium plant is a stem plant that can grow up to 20 inches tall. It has long, narrow leaves that are typically green with red undersides. The plant’s stems are thin and can grow up to 6 inches long. The cardinalis aquarium plant requires moderate to high lighting and can tolerate temperatures between 68-82°F.

To grow the cardinalis aquarium plant successfully, it is essential to provide it with a nutrient-rich substrate and regular fertilization. The plant also requires good water circulation to prevent the buildup of algae on its leaves.


Propagating the cardinalis aquarium plant is relatively easy. It can be done by taking stem cuttings from a healthy parent plant and planting them in the substrate. The cuttings will develop roots within a few days and start growing within a week or two.

The plant can also be propagated by dividing the parent plant. This method involves carefully separating the plant into smaller sections and replanting them in the substrate.

Benefits of Cardinalis Aquarium Plant

Besides its aesthetic appeal, the cardinalis aquarium plant offers many benefits to aquariums. It helps to oxygenate the water and absorb excess nutrients that can lead to algae growth. The plant also provides a hiding place for small fish and invertebrates, making it an ideal addition to community tanks.


How fast does the cardinalis aquarium plant grow?

The growth rate of the cardinalis aquarium plant depends on various factors, including lighting, water quality, and nutrient levels. Under optimal conditions, the plant can grow up to an inch per week.

Can the cardinalis aquarium plant be grown emersed?

Yes, the cardinalis aquarium plant can be grown emersed. However, it will lose its vibrant red coloration and develop more green leaves.

Is the cardinalis aquarium plant suitable for beginners?

The cardinalis aquarium plant requires moderate to high lighting and regular fertilization, making it more suitable for intermediate to advanced aquarists.

In conclusion, the cardinalis aquarium plant is a beautiful and beneficial addition to any aquarium. Its vibrant red coloration and easy propagation make it a popular choice among aquarists. With proper care and maintenance, this plant can thrive in your tank and provide many benefits to your aquatic pets.

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