Limnophila hippuridoides

Aquarium suitability: yes
Usage: Accent (red), Background, Midground
Difficulty: medium
Growth: fast
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Range and localities: 

Malaysian peninsula (Malakka)

Trader names [?]: 
  • Limnophila hippuroides gratiola sp.

Misapplied names: 
  • Limnophila aromatica
  • Gratiola officinalis

Habit, plant type:

  • stem
Botanical name [?]: Limnóphila hippuridoídes Philcox

Major group (unranked): Seed plants: Flowering plants (Angiosperms)
Order: Lamiales
Family: Plantaginaceae
Genus: Limnophila


Limnophila hippuridoides is a marshweed found under various names in trade for several years: "Limnophila aromatica", "L. aromaticoides", "L. hippuroides" (incorrectly written) and even "Gratiola officinalis" (a totally different species). L. hippuridoides is native to the Malayan peninsula (Malakka). It is closely related to L. aromatica and L. aromaticoides. In botanical literature it has hitherto been treated as species in its own right. It mainly differs from the other two species in flower and fruit characteristics, however, there are also some differences to be observed in the submersed forms (according to Kasselmann 20101):

- Limnophila aromatica: 2-3 leaves per stem node, of variable colour, reddish hues or green (very variable species).

- Limnophila aromaticoides (often treated as synonym of L. aromatica): 3-8 leaves per stem node, overall plant colour is exclusively light green

- Limnophila hippuridoides: 6-8 leaves per stem node, colour reddish to intensively dark red.
Similar to both other species, crushed leaves of L. hippuridoides smell more or less distinctly aromatic.

References and further reading:
  1. Kasselmann, Christel (2010): Aquarienpflanzen. 3rd edition. - DATZ Aquarienbuch, Ulmer Verlag: p. 402.
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