Bacopa monnieri, known as Moneywort is a popular aquarium plant that is easy to take care of. They need a very little specialist requirement that makes it a perfect choice for beginners. Likewise, they are amphibious and will grow either partially or fully submerged in the water.
Moneywort is one of the most popular, adaptable, and durable aquarium plants that make it a great addition to nearly any aquarium setup. Moreover, it has very few requirements beyond reasonably clean, nutrient-rich water and moderate lighting environment. Also, they can survive and grow in low-tech setups as well. When we talk about Moneywort, we might relate it with the Creeping Jenny. However, there is some difference between both the species.
Introduction To Moneywort
Moneywort is a background plant that can be grown both in aquariums as well as Paludariums combining submerged and emerged zones. They are also a medicine that is considered as a cure-all within several traditions. These plants have several common names that depend mostly on the use.
For example, when sold for herbal use, they go by medical or ayurvedic names like Brahmi. And, in the gardening and aquarium trade, it is typically known as Moneywort or Creeping Jenny due to the habit of growing horizontally along the water’s surface.
|Scientific Name||Bacopa monnieri|
|Common Names||Water Hysoop, Brahmi, Herb of Grace, Creeping Jenny|
|Height||12 to 24 inches|
|Light requirement||Moderate to high|
Summary To Moneywort Care
Moneywort plants are not a good option for super-low temperatures. And these plants need a moderate to the high amount of light to grow well. Likewise, if the lighting is not good or if your tank is too deep then you can float them so that the plant becomes closer to the light.
Along with that, you can let it creep over the edges of the tank and plant it in the substrate and let it grow tall. Then, do keep them trimmed short. This makes Moneywort a fantastic addition to paludariums and terrariums as well.
|Difficulty||Depends on setup|
|Speed of Growth||Moderate|
|The Temperature of the water||72 to 82 degree Fahrenheit|
|The pH of the water||6.0 to 8.0|
|The Hardness of the water||5 dKH to 20 dKH|
|Placement of plant||Floating, planted, emersed, immersed, half emersed|
|Propagation||Shoots and clippings|
|Aquascaping||Background or top coverage|
|Availability||Common-but do consider the names|
Appearance and Color
The leaf structure of the Moneywort plant and its slow growth stems make it one of the popular species in aquascaping of the Moneywort plant. This plant has a bright green appearance with new leaves often having a pinkish or copper brown color in it.
Similarly, if you allow your Moneywort stem to grow straight up, you will often see them reaching the top of the aquarium or even coming out from the top of the aquarium. There are many species of this kind and Moneywort has one of the smallest leaf structures.
A peculiar feature of this plant is that their stem will grow straight when grown under the water but, above the water level they become creeping plants. Thus, they are often called a “Creeping Jenny”.
Caring for Moneywort
When you plant Moneywort in your aquarium, you will need to consider certain areas for caring for them. Here are the few factors that you will need to consider for caring for this plant.
When caring for the Moneywort plant, lighting is one of the major factors among many others. You will need at least moderate light levels to do well for this plant. Besides that, high light levels ensure that it does not drop its lower leaves even as it starts to hit the surface.
Generally, Moneywort can tolerate water temperatures from 72 degrees to 82 degrees Fahrenheit. However, 76 degrees Fahrenheit will be an optimal temperature for the proper health and growth of this plant. And, 12 hours of lights per day will be best for the plants to survive. A minimum of 2 watts to 3 watts per gallon of full-spectrum fluorescent lighting is perfect.
NICREW ClassicLED Aquarium Light, Fish Tank Light with Extendable Brackets, 48-Inch, 32 Watts is an adjustable light that is best for a medium range of planted aquariums. It helps you to manage the lighting as per your need. So, you can help the plant grow easily with minimum effort.
- Fluval Fresh and Plant 3.0 LED Light Fixture, 59 Watt
- Finnex Stingray 2 Aquarium LED Light, Blue Fish Moonlights, 20″
- Finnex Planted+ 24/7 HLC Aquarium LED Light, Automated Full Spectrum Fish Tank Light, 24 Inch
Carbon Dioxide and Fertilizers
The presence of Carbon dioxide will show improved growth in the Moneywort plant. This plant is a slow-growing plant and it tends to creep up until it covers the surface of the aquarium. Likewise, a rich substrate is essential for this plan.
Seachem Flourish Excel Bioavailable Carbon is an Organic Carbon Source for Aquatic Plants. With this 2 liter bottle, you can be well off for a long time.
When combines with moderate to high lighting, Moneywort will put on rapid growth. And the plant will remain an intensely lime green in color. Similarly, if you are designing a planted aquascape then I would suggest using a substrate designed to absorb and retain nutrients.
Using a Seachem Flourite with occasional doses of liquid fertilizer will benefit your plant. Fluorite has a high Cation Exchange Capacity (CEC) that holds onto the liquid nutrients until the roots uptake them properly.
Moneywort has the capacity to tolerate a wide range of water conditions since it grows in every continent except Antarctica. However, the perfect environment would be the moderate tropical range for this plant.
The required temperature is between 72 to 82 degrees Fahrenheit. Besides that, the pH should remain between 6.5 to 7.5 with moderate to low carbonate hardness. You can learn to Maintain Aquarium Water Hardness from our Freshwater Aquarium Guide.
For maintaining the appropriate temperature in the tank, you can use hygger 50W Mini Submersible Digital Display Aquarium Heater as it comes with a thermometer and is compact version of heaters. It works fast and has an external controller.
Aquascaping With Moneywort
Considering the height of the Moneywort plant, they are basically mid to background plant. Since they are a slow-growing plant, so it’s an excellent first addition to any planted aquascape. Likewise, when it reaches the surface, it will either grow laterally or simply push through the surface.
Healthy stems make the propagation a very straightforward process. They send white roots out along leaf nodule points. And, with the use of sharp and clean scissors, cut the stem an inch below where the roots of the Moneywort appear.
Then, press this cutting into the aquarium substrate to keep them from floating away. Eventually, the roots of the plant will extend down by anchoring the cutting in place.
Furthermore, this plant will grow vertically which makes it easy to find a place in the most aquascape. But, once it reaches the water’s surface, they start to grow laterally that might cause to shade other aquarium plants.
You can also let them float freely on the water’s surface. This is generally done in outdoor ponds and Nature Style Aquascapes. This can provide a dense habitat for fry fish, insects, and surface-dwelling fish as well.
Common Problem With Moneywort
Every aquarium plants face problem in their growth. Lighting is the most common problem that you shall face while growing the Moneywort plant. If the lighting is very low, then the stem will start to rot on. Likewise, apart from lighting, there are other issues as well with this plant.
Melting is one of the common problems in aquatic plants. Moneywort generally grows above the water. If you pluck off the dying parts of the plant before they start to rot, then the new aquatic growth should appear soon enough.
Another problem is the algae growth in your plant. The algae will choke out plants or outcompete them from others. Likewise, algae is a sign of an unbalanced ecosystem. It is due to too many lights or too many nutrients in the water. Thus, in absence of any one of these, the algae problem might not arise.
Slow growth is not a problem of the Moneywort plant, it’s a slow-growing plant. Growing this plant, there must be patience in you. If your plant is floating then better to anchor it for its proper growth.
Similarly, if your lights and nutrients seem sufficient, then it is a waiting game for you. Some plants with better anchor or root systems tend to grow well while the same plant growing next to them will not grow well in absence of a proper root system.
Maintenance for Moneywort
Maintenance and care of your Moneywort is a must. Though it is not a difficult job to care for them, a minimal amount of maintenance is necessary. Following things you can consider for their proper maintenance:
- Dose liquid fertilizer weekly or more depending on the directions
- Lighting is a necessary factor. You will need at least 8 hours of full lighting.
- Trim your moneywort plant at regular intervals. Though they are a slow-growing plant, a pair of aquarium scissors is necessary to cut the stem at certain intervals. Bi-weekly trimming will be a good options
- If you are keeping your planted moneywort short and bushy then you will need to up your lighting and also add some Co2 as well.
- If you are keeping them tall and jungle-y look, then reduce lighting and Co2.
Are Moneywort and Creeping Jenny Same?
It is the most common question when you are familiar with either of these plants; Moneywort and Creeping Jenney that if they both are similar or not? Well, it is a clear NO. Moneywort (Bacopa monnieri) is often called Creeping Jenny(Lysimachia nummilaria) at times and so Creeping Jenny is called Moneywort. But they are not the same plant. Then why do people refer to them as the same?
Well, in the terrestrial plant world, Creeping Jenny is called Moneywort. However, the difference lies when we get into the aquatic plants and they have a different common name. Thus, when we are dealing with the terrestrial plant, they both can be relatable but not with the aquatic habitats.
Creeping Jenny has more green and rounder leaves. New leaves in these plants spread further and more evenly apart. Likewise, Moneywort usually has a lime-y green, and the leaves of these plants are teardrop-shaped. Also, the distance between new and old leaves are not consistent. Where new leaves immerge, they appear clustered together.
Placement of Moneywort
If you are looking for an appropriate place for the placement of your Moneywort plant, then it is the background of your aquarium. Generally, Moneywort grows up to 12 inches on average which makes it suitable for a background-position.
Until and unless you trim the Moneywort at a regular interval, they will grow straight up and form a light green fresh looking background plant with the surface stems reaching out of the aquarium.
As being a slow-growing stem plant, when trimmed and cut, they can be in the mid-ground area of your aquarium depending on the size and the depth of your aquarium.
How To Propagate Moneywort Plant?
Propagating Moneywort is not a difficult task. There are basically two ways to propagate the Moneywort plant. First, when the main plant stem has grown to a standard height or up to a significant height, then you will observe white roots appearing leaf nodes. And, when the roots are about one-half inch long, then cut the stem one inch below the roots and then plant into the aquarium gravel.
For the best gravel to grow the aquarium plants, you can use 12 Pounds River Rock Stones, Natural Decorative Polished Mixed Pebbles Gravel, Outdoor Decorative Stones for Plant Aquariums, Landscaping, Vase Fillers. Other gravels might have a tough time in the water. However, these are polished but do not affect the growth of the plant.
The next option is growing Moneywort on the surface. This will start to grow horizontally along with the surface and put roots out at each leaf node. After this, when the roots are about 2 inches long, then you can cut each root section.
Then, plant in the aquarium substrate. This option is best when you have an open-top aquarium. A good aspect of this option is that growing moneywort on the surface can be beneficial for the baby fish in your tank as the baby fish can use them as a protection.
Frequently Asked Questions
How Big Does Moneywort Grow?
The maximum height that the Moneywort plant grows is between 11 to 13 inches. It does not grow much in the absence of appropriate lights in your aquarium. However, its full height is as given above int he best conditions.
Does Moneywort Need Substrate?
It is not a compulsion for the Moneywort to have a substrate. They can grow either planted or on the surface of the water as well.
Can You Float Moneywort?
Yes, moneywort can be grown floating. If your tank is particularly deep, or if they have a weak light, then this is probably the best method for growing your Moneywort plant. Also, you can grow them half immersed with some in the water and some parts out of the water.
Does Moneywort Flower?
Moneywort is a flowering plant. It is a flowering herb that is used in some supplements and also for medical purposes as well. The flower of the moneywort plant is white while that of creeping jenny is yellow.
Is Moneywort a Freshwater Tropical Plant or a Coldwater Pond Plant?
The suitable temperature for a Moneywort plant is between 72 degree to 82 degrees Fahrenheit. This is a suitable temperature for most home tropical aquariums and also some indoor coldwater aquariums.
You can learn better about Small Tropical Fish That Does Not Require Much Space from here.
Should You Give Moneywort Fertilizer or Plant Food?
Even in the absence of Co2 or fertilizer, Moneywort will grow perfectly. However, like any other plants, they will benefit from extra plant food.
Moneywort is a popular aquarium plant due to its bright green color and durability. They are very easy to take care of as well. They grow very well when provided with adequate lighting and rich nutrients.
However, in low lighting, they grow at a slower pace. Like any other plants, they can also be trimmed and cut, and be replanted as well. Moreover, they are versatile and excellent in low-tech setups and paludariums. You can consider them as a midground to background plant.
All in all, I recommend the Moneywort plant if you have an aquarium with better lighting and nutrients rich substrate. Though you will need occasional trimming and fertilizer dosing, they are an attractive, low maintenance aquarium plant.
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