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Freshwater   Plants

Water sprite
(Ceratopteris thalictroides)

Water sprite

Alternative species (click on the thumbnail to see the card)

  • None (for the moment!)


Scientific name
Ceratopteris thalictroides
Acrostichum thalictroides
Ceratopteris parkeri
Cryptogenis ferulacea
Ellobocarpus oleraceus
Parkeria pteridoides

Common name
Water sprite
Indian fern
Water fern
Oriental waterfern
Water hornfern


what are his countries of origin?

Origin: Cosmopolitan in a tropical environment

Ideal fertilization

how to fertilize this plant?

CO2: 10-40mg/l
Nitrates (NO3): 10-50mg/l
Phosphates (PO4): 0.1-3mg/l
Potassium (K): 5-30mg/l
Iron (Fe): 0.01-0.5mg/l


which group is this plant?



what is the type of plant?

Floating plant


What are the Water parameters for the maintenance of this plant?

T°: 20 to 26°C or 68 to 79°F
pH: 6 to 7
Hardness: 5 to 15°dGH





what brightness is needed?



what is the maximum size of the plant?

30 to 60cm (12 to 23.6")


in which area of the aquarium install this plant?



how fast does this plant grow?



Who is the Water sprite?


Who is the Water sprite?

Terrestrial Ceratopteris thalictroides

This pretty plant grows naturally in stagnant water, but can also grow out of the water. It is an amphibious plant. Therefore, it can be used in aquariums as well as in aquaterrariums or paludariums.

The fine and delicate cutting of its leaves offers a nice detailed decoration. In addition, its bushy appearance can provide an interesting refuge and pantry for your fry.

It absorbs a lot of nutrients suspended in the water. Thus, it deprives the algae of some of these substances. It will therefore help you to limit the presence of algae in your aquarium.

Planting and maintenance

How to plant and maintain the Water sprite?

Planting and maintenance

How to plant and maintain the Water sprite?

Ceratopteris thalictroides aquarium

It is very adaptable and you can install it as a background for your aquarium or as a floating plant. You can also attach it to an element of the decor that you wish to decorate (rock, root...). It can be used alone or in a group (count 1 or 2 plant per 15 cm / 6" square).

When you plant it, do not bury its roots too deeply so that they do not rot (beware of the rhizome). Be careful when handling it because it is quite fragile and breaks easily.

Prefer a quiet place in the aquarium to install your fern because it does not like strong currents.

Its growth is quite fast and it can quickly become invasive. To limit its expansion, do not hesitate to thin it out regularly.

Since it feeds mainly on its leaves, the soil is of little importance to this fern. A simple Loire sand can satisfy it!


How to farm the Water sprite?


How to farm the Water sprite?

Cut off the shoots from the main stem and you have your cutting. This plant grows fast and the problem is not so much to reproduce it as to stop its expansion!

Good To know

Find all additional information!

Good To know

Find all additional information!

Often confused with its cousins Ceratopteris cornuta (larger, less serrated leaves) and Ceratopteris pteridoides.

Translated with www.DeepL.com/Translator (free version)

Yours photos!


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