Anubias Afzelii: Ultimate Care Guide

Common Name(s)Anubias Congensis, Congo Sword Plant
Scientific NameAnubias Afzelii
OriginGuinea, West Africa
Temperature59 to 86°F (15 to 30°C)
SizeHeight: 8-15 in. (20-35 cm) Width: 5 in. (12.7 cm)
Minimum Tank Size10 Gallons
Light RequirementLow
Co2 RequirementNot necessary, but can help boost growth
Water pH6.0-8.0
PropagationVia rhizomes

What Is Anubias Afzelii?

Anubias afzelii is a beautiful and easy to care for freshwater aquarium plant native to West Africa, popular for their interesting sword-shaped leaves.

Due to their relatively high hardiness, this plant can tolerate a range of water conditions, including freshwater and saltwater (althouth resh water is preferred).

While there are several color variations available, most are green with a slightly brown hue.

Keep an eye out for the more rare colors such as red and yellow, as they are sure to add a unique splash of color to your tank.

Anubias Afzelii
Anubias Afzelii

Anubias Afzelii Care

Anubias afzelii is very hardy and can tolerate a wide range of water parameters, making it perfect for beginners or aquarists interested in a low-maintenance addition to their tank.

As relatively slow-growers, afzelli will take up to a month to grow a single leaf, so be patient!

Propagation is easy too, Anubias can be easily planted via their rhizomes, making it simple to grow more afzelii as you need it.

After maturity, they don’t require much attention at all.

How Much Light Does Anubias Afzelii Need?

While they can tolerate a range of lighting conditions, Anubias afzelii prefers low to moderate light, as excessive exposure could lead to algae overgrowth.

We recommend light levels between 20 – 40 PAR for the Anubias, as this amount will stimulate growth without providing enough light for any algal blooms.

Optimum Water Temperature For Anubias Afzelii

Anubias Afzelli prefer water temperatures ranging from: 73-80°F, although they can survive in temperatures as low as 59°F.

Despite their resistance to less ideal conditions, it is recommended to keep water temperature at the afzelli’s optimal range for the best growth.

Optimum Water Hardness For Anubias Afzelii

Anubias enjoy water hardness levels ranging from 2-15 dGH and 3-8 KH , although they can tolerate conditions slightly outside of these ranges.

Ideal pH For Anubias Afzelii

Anubias Afzelli enjoy slightly acidic to alkaline water pH levels, ranging from 6.0-8.0.

Average Growth Rate For Anubias Afzelii

Anubias Afzelli is a slow-growing plant, often taking several years to reach full maturity.

While growth can be sped up by proper care, Co2 supplementation, and ideal lighting, this plant grows a new leaf only about every 1-4 weeks.

Anubias Afzelii Grow Height

Anubias afzelii grow to be a maximum of 8-15 inches (20-35 cm) tall and about 5 inches (13 cm) wide.

Do Anubias Azfelli require a Co2 Injection To Grow?

While a Co2 injection is not necessary for your Anubias’ growth, it can be used to speed up the plant’s development.

How to Propagate Anubias Afzelii

Anubias Afzelii can be easily propagated via rhizomes.

Growing more afzelli plants is easy, simply split the rhizome and place is in your substrate of choice, or attach it to a hard surface via fishing line, superglue, or thread.

Be careful not to bury your rhizomes too deeply in the substrate, otherwise the roots may begin rotting.

Propagation via Super Glue

Super Glue is a great option to secure your afzelli to your tank, just as long as it is 100% cyanoacrylate.

Don’t use superglue unless it is pure cyanoacrylate, otherwise it won’t dry underwater.

During application, a dot-sized amount applied directly to your desired surface should be sufficient.

After application, gently press the rhizome onto the glue for a few seconds, being careful not to cause any damage to your plant.

Over time, the plant’s roots will grow around the rock, driftwood, or other solid surface it is attached. 

Propagation via Fishing Line

Fishing line is a great alternative for attaching your anubias afzelli if you are short on superglue.

Gently fasten the anubias to your desired surface, making sure to avoid harming the rhizome.

If you accidentally tie the fishing line too much, it may cut into the rhizome of the plant.

Using fishing line is best for attaching your afzelli to small pieces of driftwood or similarly-shaped objects, however, it can be more difficult to use on rocks and larger pieces of driftwood.

As new roots form, they’ll gradually attach themselves to the surface they were placed on.

Once your plant is able to establish a firm grip with its roots, you can carefully remove the fishing line.

Propagation via Substrate

This method is only recommended for experienced plant parents, as using this method for propagation, if done incorrectly, can cause the rhizome to rot.

First, bury the rhizome slightly beneath the substrate.

Next, carefully pull the rhizome up until it is above the substrate, leaving the roots slightly buried.

The roots will stick to the substrate as the plant grows.

Practice extra caution to ensure your rhizome is completely unburied, otherwise root rot could quickly kill your plant.

Where can I find Anubias Afzelii for sale?

If you are interested in acquiring an Anubias for your aquarium, they are available for purchase at a variety of independent merchants as well as online retailers, such as  Esty and Ebay.

Prices range from as little as $5 to as much as $50 ot more, depending on the size of the plant, amount of plants purchased, as well as color variety.

When you are searching for the right Afzelli for your aquarium, look for visible signs of a healthy plant: vibrant, green color, well-established root structure, and unharmed leaves.

Do NOT purchase any damaged or sick plants, as they will not grow well in your tank, if at all.