Home    Freshwater Plants    Hornwort


(Ceratophyllum demersum)

Join the Conversation  

 Quick Care Facts

• Care Level: Easy   • Lighting:Low   • Maximum Size: 36"
• Placement: Background, Surface   • Water Conditions: 60-86° F, pH 5.0-8.0, KH 3-15
• Propagation: Cuttings, Fragmentation   • Color Forms: Green
Supplements: Trace Elements
• Origin: North America, South America, Eurasia   • Family: Ceratophyllaceae

Help Support AquariumDomain!      

• Your support keeps AquariumDomain advertisement free, lightning fast and fully optimized for both mobile and desktop browsing.
• Visit our Patreon page to learn about the exclusive benefits our Patrons receive!

Native Habitat and Species Information

Hornwort native habitat, distribution, behavior & aquarium compatibility.

Ceratophyllum demersum, also known as Hornwort, is found free-floating or or loosely anchored in slow moving and still waters throughout North America, South America, and Eurasia. Hornwort rapidly grows sturdy, bright green, sessile leaves that help clarify and oxygenate water.

Aquarium Care

How to successfully keep Hornwort in the home aquarium.

Although this species is a true rootless aquatic plant, if carefully pressed into substrate it will produce modified leaves (rhizoids) that have a root-like appearance and will keep it anchored. Hornwort can be left floating at the aquarium surface or buried in substrate.

Hornwort's stiff leaves make it an excellent plant for providing cover and shelter for small fish and aquatic invertebrates. In addition to its water oxygenating qualities, Hornwort is known to produce allelochemicals (metabolite biomolecules) that inhibit algae growth. Hornwort is generally safe with herbivorous fish as most species don't find its hard leaves very appetizing.

Feeding & Nutrition

How to feed and supplement the Hornwort.

Hornwort is a very undemanding plant, which has adapted to grow both under low light intensity conditions and in areas of shade within the aquarium. It does not require CO2 supplementation, but will respond to it with even faster growth. Due to the rapid growth of Hornwort, it will require regular pruning to keep it in check, just cut off excess growth with a pair of sharp scissors.

Hornwort consumes nutrients quickly due to its fast growth rate, which will rapidly deplete nutrients within the aquarium. If it is being kept with other plant species, be sure to replace the nutrients regularly via the addition of plant fertilizers designed for the aquarium environment.

Propagation Information

How to propagate and grow Hornwort.

Hornwort will easily propagate from cuttings and naturally occurring fragmentation of the plant. To expedite propagation within the aquarium, simply cut the plant stem with sharp scissors and replant as needed.

Click or Tap Photos below for Full Size Photos

Click or tap the images below to view full size images, then click or tap off the image to shrink again.

Follow AquariumDomain.com on Social Networks