The Amazon Sword is a popular aquatic plant that is easy to find for your aquarium. It reproduces readily and is easy to care for, making it a great plant option for beginners. It’s available in multiple varieties with varying sizes and leaf shapes. If you’re interested in adding a beginner-friendly plant to your aquarium, keep reading for more information about Amazon Sword plants.
Water Parameters for the Amazon Sword
As their name implies, these are tropical plants. The Amazon Sword should be grown in water with a temperature ranging from 72–82°F, making this plant ideal for tropical freshwater tanks. It prefers a pH between 6.5–7.5, although it may tolerate a pH as low as 6.0 and as high as 8.0.
Lighting for the Amazon Sword
Although they are easy to care for, the Amazon Sword does require more lighting than many other plants. It prefers moderate to strong lighting for at least 10 hours per day, while tolerating moderate to high lighting for up to 12 hours per day. Excess light can lead to algae growth and may burn the plant’s leaves. With proper care, the Amazon Sword can reach 12–20 inches in height, and it can fill your tank with new plants.
The 4 Steps for Growing Amazon Sword
1. Select a Location
Amazon Sword plants are recommended for use as midground and background plants, depending on the tank size and setup. Choose a location that will allow the plant to provide shelter to your fish and enhance the beauty of the tank without preventing viewing of the tank.
You also need to ensure that you choose a location that will have access to the amount of light these plants require. Avoid choosing a location that has larger plants or floating plants that may block light from reaching the Amazon Sword, especially when it is still small.
2. Plant In Location
These plants do need some form of substrate to help hold them in place. In tanks with fish that are prone to uprooting the plants, you can add plant weights to the base of your plant to help hold it in the substrate. Ensure the weight doesn’t squeeze the plant or impede the growth of the plant itself or the roots.
The Amazon Sword prefers a loosely packed substrate, like sand or plant-specific substrate. It will grow in gravel, but it may grow more slowly. Avoid packing substrate around the crown or the upper portion of the roots where they connect to the leaves because this can impede the growth of the plant.
3. Feed the Plant
Amazon Swords are primarily root feeders, which means they take their nutrition from the substrate rather than the water column. They grow best with root tabs or fortified substrate that contains plant food. Plant food added directly into the water column can also help support the growth of your Amazon Sword plant, but it will be less effective than root tabs.
4. Provide Proper Lighting
The last step to growing your Amazon Sword plant is to provide proper lighting. Since this plant requires moderate to high lighting for at least 10 hours per day, you should make sure that your plant is in a location where it gets plenty of light. You will also need to invest in a light that is powerful enough to provide energy to your plants.
- See Also: 32 Plants That Are Safe for Cats
Tank Mates for the Amazon Sword
Many tropical freshwater fish will be great companions for your Amazon Sword plant. Since it will send out runners to create new plants, a single Amazon Sword can fill your tank in just a few months. The height and fullness of this plant provide shelter to your fish, as well as being a good place for biofilm to collect for inhabitants like shrimp and snails.
Fish that are prone to uprooting plants may be too hard on the Amazon Sword, but it is a hardy plant that is likely to grow back after being uprooted or having its leaves eaten. Many people consider the Amazon Sword to be a suitable plant for goldfish tanks because goldfish may enjoy snacking on it and it can be quite nutritious for the fish. However, goldfish may kill an Amazon Sword if not given other options to snack on.
The Amazon Sword is a beginner-friendly plant that is suitable for a variety of tropical freshwater tank environments. It’s easy to grow and will happily produce new plants for you with proper care. They are root feeders, which means you should make sure that your substrate is fortified with nutrients with root tabs. Keep your plant securely in place with plant weights if needed, and choose a location in your tank that will provide your Amazon Sword with plenty of light to encourage growth.
Featured Image Credit: Lasindu Nethmina Images, Shutterstock