Hydrocotyle vulgaris

Aquarium suitability: yes
Usage: Midground
Difficulty: medium
Growth: fast
See also: Hydrocotyle verticillata

Habit, plant type:

  • rhizome or creeping stem
Botanical name [?]: Hydrocótyle vulgáris L.

Major group (unranked): Seed plants: Flowering plants (Angiosperms)
Order: Apiales
Family: Araliaceae
Genus: Hydrocotyle


Hydrocotyle vulgaris, or water pennywort, is widely spread in Europe and is also found in North Africa, in Caucasia and Iran. In Germany it is the only native Hydrocotyle. It forms extensive populations on lakeshores and edges of ponds and mainly grows in locations poor in nutrients and lime, marshy or sandy, which may be quite dry. Water pennywort also extends into shallow water, where its leaves sometimes float on the water surface.
H. vulgaris is probably hard to find in the aquarium trade, however, it is often sold as a plant for pond edges in garden centres.
This species looks very much like the American species Hydrocotyle verticillata, only differing in a few characteristics.

As aquarium plant, H. vulgaris is a good choice for coldwater tanks, however, it also grows in warmwater tanks with temperatures of up to 28 °C. There it has proven to be a fast grower, but forms longer leaf stalks and internodes than H. verticillata, which makes H. vulgaris a good middleground plant.

To be continued...

References and further reading:
  1. follows
Light medium to high 
Temperature tolerance 4 to 30 °C
Optimum temperature 20 to 28 °C
Carbonate hardness 0 to 15 °dKH
pH value 5 to 7.5 
Carbon dioxide (CO2) 10 to 40 mg/l
Nitrate (NO3-) 10 to 50 mg/l
Phosphate (PO43-) 0.1 to 3 mg/l
Potassium (K+) 5 to 30 mg/l
Iron (Fe) 0.01 to 0.5 mg/l

Growth: fast

Propagation: Runners, Cuttings, Splitting, cutting off daughter plants

Can grow emersed?: yes

Suited for outdoor cultivation / ponds: yes

Winter hardiness: hardy in Germany

References and further reading:
  1. follows
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Wasserpflanzen sind ein fester Bestandteil der meisten Aquarien. Beim Aquascaping, dem Naturaquarium, Biotop-Aquarium oder dem Gesellschaftsaquarium sind Wasserpflanzen nicht nur für die Wasserqualität entscheidend, sondern sorgen auch stets für eine optische Aufwertung des Aquariums.