Brazilian Pennywort Plant Caring Guide

Brazilian pennywort is a versatile and easy-to-grow plant that can be a great addition to your aquarium.

You might find it under the names Brazilian water ivy or simply pennywort as well. 

This popular aquarium plant is perfect for beginners and experienced hobbyists alike, thanks to its adaptability and ability to thrive in various water conditions.

Growing Brazilian pennywort in your aquarium will not only give your fish and fry cover but also add a touch of beauty to the underwater landscape. 

Keep reading to learn more about Brazilian pennywort, including how to care for and maintain this plan. 

Brazilian Pennywort Overview

This plant is super adaptable, meaning you can easily work it into the midground, foreground, or background of your tank. 

Plus, its vine-like stems and light green, kidney-shaped leaves bring a touch of elegance and charm to your underwater world.

Here are some quick facts about the Brazilian pennywort plant:

Scientific Name:Hydrocotyle leucocephala 
Other Names:Brazilian water ivy, pennywort
Minimum Tank Size:10 gallons
Lightning:Moderate to high
pH Level:6.0 – 8.0
Temperature:68 – 82°F
Water Hardiness: 4 – 18 dGH
Growth Rate:Moderate to fast
Placement in the Tank:Background
Propagation:Lateral shoots or by clipping mature stems 

Plant Care and Maintenance

Brazilian Pennywort Plant Care and Maintenance

Brazilian pennywort is a relatively low-maintenance plant that requires moderate to high light and regular pruning to prevent overgrowth. 

It is important to monitor water conditions and maintain a stable environment for the plant to thrive.

Water Conditions

Caring for your Brazilian pennywort is quite simple since this plant can thrive in a variety of water conditions. 

Aim for a water temperature between 68°F and 82°F, with a pH level of 6.0 to 8.0. 

Keep an eye on the nitrate levels in your tank, as high levels can negatively impact the plant’s growth. 

Regular water changes and good filtration will help maintain a healthy environment for your Brazilian pennywort.

Fertilizer Requirements

Your Brazilian pennywort doesn’t require much in terms of fertilizer. 

However, adding a basic liquid fertilizer, like this one, or this root tabs to your tank will give it the nutrients it needs for healthier leaves and faster growth. 

Make sure to follow the product instructions for the proper dosage and frequency.


Good lighting is essential for the growth and overall health of your Brazilian pennywort. 

Aim to provide wide community tank lighting, which should be sufficient for this easy-to-grow plant. 

If you want to encourage faster growth, consider placing the plant closer to the light source.

Pruning and Trimming

To keep your Brazilian pennywort looking neat and under control, it’s essential to prune and trim the long stems regularly. 

With a simple pair of scissors, snip off any unwanted or overgrown sections. 

You can even use these trimmings to propagate new plants! 

Remember to remove any unhealthy leaves or stems to promote better growth.

Propagation Methods

You’ll be glad to know there are a couple of ways to propagate the Brazilian pennywort plant, so let’s dive right in.

First, the easiest method: Just trim a few inches off the parent stem, making sure there are plenty of leaves present, and let it float in the water. 

Within a week or so, your cutting will start to grow roots.

Alternatively, you can trim a long stem from the parent plant and plant it directly into the substrate. 

This is great for achieving a more structured look in your tank, and the cuttings will sprout roots in a couple of weeks as well.

Brazilian Pennywort Potential Issues

If left unchecked, Brazilian pennywort can grow rapidly and become invasive, potentially crowding out other plants and disrupting the aquarium ecosystem. 

Additionally, the plant may be susceptible to algae growth and may require regular cleaning and maintenance to prevent this issue.

Invasive Species

Did you know that Brazilian pennywort can sometimes become an invasive species? 

It’s true, this fast-growing plant can outcompete native species and dominate a water body. 

However, compared to other invasive plants like floating pennywort and Anacharis, it’s generally easier to manage. 

Compatibility with Other Plants

When it comes to compatibility with other plants, Brazilian pennywort generally plays well with others. 

Yet, there are a few things you should be aware of. 

Firstly, its rapid growth can sometimes shade smaller or slower-growing plants. 

Keep an eye on tank conditions and trim back the pennywort if you notice other plants suffering. 

Secondly, make sure you give all your plants adequate nutrients and light. 

Brazilian pennywort is tough, but if it’s taking up all the resources in your tank, other plants might struggle to keep up.

Power Filter Intakes

Lastly, let’s talk about power filter intakes. 

One issue you might encounter with Brazilian pennywort is it getting caught in your filter intakes, especially if you’re keeping it as a floating plant.

 To prevent this, consider adding a sponge or mesh around the intake to keep the pennywort at a safe distance. 

FAQs About Brazilian Pennywort

Can Brazilian Pennywort Float?

Yes, Brazilian Pennywort can float! In fact, it’s a versatile plant that can either be planted on the substrate or left floating on the water’s surface. 

It’s really up to you and your aquarium setup. 

When floating, this plant will form a lush mat on the surface, providing shade and hiding places for your aquatic creatures. 

Plus, its whiteish roots dangling in the water can create a visually striking effect.

Does Brazilian Pennywort Need CO2?

While Brazilian pennywort can benefit from CO2 supplementation, it’s not a necessity for its growth. 

This hardy plant can easily adapt to various water conditions and grow well even without CO2. 

As long as you provide some basic requirements like a water temperature and proper lighting, your Brazilian pennywort should thrive. 

How Do You Take Care of a Brazilian Pennywort Plant?

To take care of a Brazilian pennywort plant, provide it with moderate to high light and maintain stable water conditions with a pH range of 6.0-8.0 and a temperature range of 68-82°F.

Place the plant in the background or midground of the aquarium and trim it regularly to prevent overgrowth. 

Brazilian pennywort can be propagated through cuttings, making it easy to propagate and maintain. 

Monitor the plant for signs of pests or disease, and clean the aquarium regularly to prevent algae growth. 

With proper care and maintenance, Brazilian pennywort can thrive and provide numerous benefits to your aquarium.