Ludwigia Ovalis Care Guide: Growing in Aquarium & Emersed

Common Name(s)Oval Ludwigia
Scientific NameLudwigia ovalis
OriginSoutheast Asia
Ease of GrowingModerate
Height10-20 inches
Temperature64-82°F (18-28°C)
Growth RateFast
Light RequirementMedium
CO2 RequirementNot necessary
ludwigia ovalis
Ludwigia Ovalis growing emersed. Show_ryu, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Creating the perfect fish tank is both an art and a science. The challenge here is to choose the right plant to balance the aesthetics with the needs of your fish and the aquarium ecosystem.

Ludwigia ovalis is an excellent choice for many aquarium setups. It is originally from Southeast Asia, but today it is cultivated and grown in nurseries extensively. It’s a popular aquarium plant because it adds beautiful color to your tank and grow attractive oval-shaped leaves.

If you are considering ludwigia ovalis for your aquarium, make sure you learn how to care for it so it can properly grow and thrive.

Ludwigia Ovalis Care

Ludwigia ovalis is a versatile plant that is easy to take care of. It requires medium light conditions, prefers stable environments, and do not require CO2 injections.

While CO2 is not required to grow ludwigia ovalis, it can help it grow faster and more robust. It can help bring out bright coloration as well.

If you are looking for bright colors in your ludwigia ovalis, you need to provide the right nutrients as well. More specifically, high iron content will help bring out the best colors.

While they are not difficult to take care of, it should be handled with care because it can be a fragile plant.

How to Grow Ludwigia Ovalis in an Aquarium

Ludwigia ovalis is a great aquatic plant for aquariums. They are easy to grow, even for beginners. However, keep in mind that they need to be handled gently and planted immediately after purchase. Furthermore, you will need to keep the water parameters in the tank within optimal range without too much fluctuations.

For most aquariums, ludwigia ovalis is best placed towards the back of the tank. For larger aquariums, they can be placed in the mid-ground.

Lighting Requirement

Lighting is one of the most important factor for aquarium plants, including ludwigia ovalis. Ludwigia ovalis requires medium to high levels of aquarium light. Under higher light intensity, it will grow and maintain the attractive red coloration.

To provide sufficient lighting, installing the right aquarium light is important. Ludwigia ovalis require approximately 50 lumens or more.

To ensure best results, try to add aquatic plants with similar lighting needs. This would make it much easier to give the right amount of light to all plants in the aquarium. On the other hand, if plants in the same aquarium have different light requirements, it can be a challenge to keep all plants healthy.


The optimum temperature for ludwigia ovalis is 64-82°F (18-28°C). Since they are relatively fragile plants, sudden changes in temperatures should be avoided. If the water temperature needs to be adjusted, do so gradually to allow time for acclimation.

In order to avoid unnecessary temperature fluctuations, make sure that your fish tank is located away from sunny windows or an uncontrolled heat source. Choose somewhere in your house that has a stable temperature. An aquarium heater can help maintain proper temperatures in colder climates.


As mentioned, ludwigia ovalis prefer stable water parameters that do not fluctuate too suddenly. Water pH is another important factor to consider. Ludwigia ovalis requires a pH level of 5.0-7.0 in the aquarium to grow and thrive. Since this is the typical pH range of a fish tank, ludwigia ovalis can be added to many types of freshwater aquariums.

Keep in mind that the pH level of a fish tank tend to decrease over time due to the continuous breakdown of organic materials. Therefore, it’s important to keep up with regular cleaning and water changes.

Growth Rate

Keep your eyes on your ludwigia ovalis, because it can fill up the aquarium very quickly. This is a fast growing plant. Under optimal conditions, ludwigia ovalis can grow up to 4 inches per month. Therefore, cutting the plant regularly is important.

If you want to grow a bush of ludwigia ovalis, the cuttings can be planted back into the substrate as well. Establishing multiple points of growth will help create a dense plant.

Growth Height

Ludwigia ovalis is a fast growing plant that has a growth height of 10-20 inches. This height makes the plant suitable for fish tanks of various size. For example, the height of a standard 55 gallon aquarium is approximately 21 inches. A full grown Ludwigia ovalis plant has the potential to reach surface, even for an aquarium of this size. Of course, this plant can be regularly pruned to fit a smaller aquarium as well.

Ludwigia Ovalis

Will Ludwigia Ovalis Grow Emersed?

Ludwigia ovalis is an aquatic plant that can grow emersed. It will remain rooted in the substrate, but the foliage and leaves will keep growing out of the water. They will actually grow very quickly as an emersed plant.

Since it can grow very well as either an submersed or emersed plant, it is a very versatile plant for aquariums.

How to Use Ludwigia Ovalis in an Aquascape

Ludwigia ovalis is an awesome plant for various aquascapes. It is beautiful, relatively easy to keep, and fast growing.

Since they grow fast and can be propagate easily, they can be a great plant to fill up an empty space in the tank. The cuttings can be replanted to create a natural height contrast.

The bright green leaves can fill up the space in the aquarium quite well.

Ludwigia Ovalis Pink

The ludwigia ovalis ‘pink’ is a beautiful variety of the the ludwigia ovalis plant. The pink colored plant can become an focal point in a natural aquascape. The color contrast that this stem plant can create is truly amazing.

Depending on the lighting, CO2, and fertilization, the shade of color can change quite drastically. Bright light is one of the most important factor in maintaining pink or red plants. Having sufficient levels of iron in the fertilizer is important as well. However, excessive amounts of iron will not help achieve pink or red growth. In fact, overdosing on iron can be dangerous since it can become harmful to the invertebrates such as shrimps.


Should you get ludwigia ovalis for your aquarium? Well, we think it’s an awesome aquarium plant. The pink ludwigia ovalis is definitely one of our favorites since it brings so much color into the tank. Who said a natural aquascape can only look green? We certainly don’t think so.

While stable conditions are required, this fast growing plant is not difficult to take care of. This is a beautiful plant that both you and your fish will likely enjoy!