Limnophila Heterophylla: Ultimate Care Guide

Common Name(s)Beremi, Sarai Chat
Scientific NameLimnophila Heterophylla
OriginSoutheast Asia
Ease of GrowingSteady
Temperature15 – 20 °C (60 – 70°F)
Growth RateFast
PropagationTrim and plant stems
Light RequirementMedium to High
CO2 RequirementRecommended
Limnophila Heterophylla
Limnophila Heterophylla. Edited. Ruppia2000, CC BY-SA 3.0

If you are looking for an easy stem plant that can grow in a wide range of aquarium conditions, then the limnophila heterophylla is the plant for you.  The limnophila heterophylla does not require so much work and gives a beautiful appearance as a background plant.  The limnophila heterophylla comes from South America and under the family of Plantaginacease.  However, this plant has widely spread in the Asian tropics and subtropics.  The limnophila heterophylla is a rooted-aquatic herb that grows in the shallow and still waters of swamps, lakes, and ponds.  They have finely pinnate leaves in their submersed form.  The stalks branch outwards and makes for a gorgeous addition to the background of any aquarium.  The limnophila heterophylla is a luscious green plant that is one of the more popular aquarium plants used, but is also considered a weed with moderate risk of being invasive. 

Limnophila Heterophylla Care

The limnophila heterphylla are a fairly easy plant to take care of in an aquarium, but still have specific requirements for its health.  Reading up on guides like this one to help you identify the correct parameters for your plant is paramount to its survival.  It should be mentioned that before you buy anything, it is highly recommended that you plan out your aquarium before you get started.  Doing this will save you time, money, and energy, as you will have a clearer understanding of how to properly introduce your limnophila heterophylla into your aquarium, but also how to care for it. 

Lighting Requirement

The lighting necessary for the limnophila heterophylla is between medium and high light.  Since the plant relies on photosynthesis for much of its nourishment, it is good to keep a .5-watt bulb close by to make sure that the limnophila heterophylla gets enough light.


For the temperature, the limnophila heterophylla will need a temperature between the range of 60-70°F (15-20°C).  Anything warmer than this will cause the plant to dry up or burn.  Anything lower and the plant will not be able to survive.  Keeping the temperature in this range will give the plant the best chance for thriving. 

Water pH

As for the pH levels in the water, you will need to keep the water between a 6.0-7.5.  This will ensure that the limnophila heterophylla will stay healthy and grow.

Growth Rate

The growth rate of the limnophila heterophylla can be very fast.  This is one of the reasons why the USDA did a risk assessment on the invasive plant.  However, the limnophila heterophylla is mainly found in tropical areas, so there are a limited number of places in the US that it will be able to grow naturally.  However, if you are putting the limnophila heterophylla into a tank, the growth rate will be quite high as its conditions in the tank are specifically suited for the plant.

Growth Height

The height of the limnophila heterophylla depends on how well you take care and provide optimal conditions for the plant.  Assuming that you are going by the book, the limnophila heterophylla can grow in height up to 12 inches.  The total range of height recorded is between four and twelve inches.  This will also be determined by you tank and how much room you have in it for the plant.

Co2 Requirement

The various nutrients that the limnophila heterophylla needs is not very hard to come by, assuming that you are treating the water correctly and making sure to clean out the tank and change the water to keep the tank healthy.  However, you may also want to consider injecting some CO2 into the tank.  This will help your plants grow and prosper a bit better.

Limnophila Heterophylla Propagation

The limnophila heterophylla is propagated by cutting.  It is a relatively simple process since all you have to do is snip off one of the lateral shoots with some scissors.  Remove the bottom two pairs of leaves and carefully place the stem into the substrate.  Be careful not to crush the stem and in a few short weeks, the cutting should have grown a decent root system.  Also keep an eye on your substrate and adjust any unwanted movements.  The plant should root well enough to stay sturdy, but if you are planning on having creatures in the tank, there is a possibility that they might accidently nudge, bump, or shift something in the aquarium bottom. 

When pruning the limnophila heterophylla, be careful where you are cutting, as you do not want to remove too much of the leaves.  The leaves tend to bush out from the main stem and require sharp scissors to prune.  Gently grab the tip of the leaves that you want to remove and then cut back any excess that you need to.  Each tank is different so it is up to you to use your best judgement.

Limnophila Heterophylla for Sale

If you are looking to buy some limnophila heterophylla for the background of your tank, then you can always go to online shops like Buceplant, Etsy, or Ebay.  You can also find these plants at any general aquatic shop.  The limnophila heterophylla is not very expensive and one plant can run as low as $5 and as high as $20.  Be sure to do some due diligence before you purchase anything to make sure you are getting good quality plants, which mean reading reviews and calling the store to ask relevant questions.

Limnophila Heterophylla vs Limnophila Sessiliflora

Many of these aquatic plants often look very similar and difficult to tell apart.  Many shops tend to generalize when it comes to selling certain aquatic features because it dives a little too deep into scientific specifics for the common consumer.  So they will put up a generic label like “limnophila” and call it a day.  Because there are so many steps that must done before you can get an accurate tell of which variation you have.  One notable difference is that the sessiliflora is on the federal noxious weed list, which means you are not really supposed to sell it anyway.  Many of the different types of the species is more or less interchangeable.