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Anacharis | Home Fish Aquarium Guide

Home Fish Aquarium Guide

Fishkeeping Information and Resources for the Home Aquarium

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I like this fast growing plant! For starters this can do an amazing job of pulling out ammonia and nitrites during the cycling process of breaking in a new tank. It’s also fast growing and can be a floating plant or anchored in the substrate. It’s also a good plant to demonstrate photosynthesis as you can actually see the water bubbles on it. (In fact, this plant floats higher during the time it receives light and lower in the water when it’s dark.)

This plant can be considered a weed as it is acclimated to such a wide range of temperatures that it can survive outside in many areas of the US. Be careful not to dump any of this plant out into native water sources.

It is also sensitive to copper and may turn to mush if you have levels of copper in your tank, or if you apply medications or fertilizers that contain copper. (Flourish Excel is fatal to anacharis.)

But, really anacharis is a loosely used name. There are several plants that are given the monicker “anacharis”. At this point in time I have kept two different kinds.

Egeria Densa

This is the one I have seen more commonly. It is a bit paler green has whorls of 4-6 leaflets and is a bit softer to the touch.

Hydrilla Verticallata

This is one I’ve seen more recently. It is a darker green, VERY fast growing and has whorls of 5 leaves (more uniform.) It’s also a bit rougher to the touch. It reminds me of handling a spruce evergreen twig. This appears to be the most invasive of the three.

Elodea Canadensis

This is a bit paler in coloration and has whorls of 3 leaves. I haven’t yet seen this variety firsthand.

No matter which of the three you have in your aquarium. Please take care with cuttings and refuse from the aquarium that the clippings cannot enter local waterways where they may compete with and choke out native species!

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March 7, 2010 - 10:34 PM