Amazon Sword Plant Care: A Complete Guide

Echinodorus amazonicus in an aquarium
Dr. Mollie Newton
Published by Dr. Mollie Newton PHD| Senior Editor
Last updated: July 17, 2024
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The Amazon Sword, a beloved aquarium plant, hails from South America’s lush landscapes. Its name, inspired by the mighty Amazon River, charms aquarium lovers around the world. Given its many **benefits** and **stunning look**, the Amazon Sword is highly sought after and admired.

Article Summary

  • The Amazon sword is a popular aquatic plant in the aquarium trade known for its sword-shaped leaves.
  • The Amazon sword helps maintain a healthy ecosystem by absorbing excess nutrients from the water which helps to prevent algae growth and maintain water quality.
  • The Amazon sword’s dense foliage creates a natural habitat that provides shelter and hiding spots for small fish and fry.

Species Overview

The Amazon sword is a popular aquatic plant that belongs to the Echinodorus genus. Within this genus, there are several species of Amazon swords, all commonly known as “sword plants.” These plants are highly sought after by aquarium enthusiasts due to their attractive appearance and ease of care.

The Echinodorus genus encompasses a diverse range of plants, but the Amazon sword stands out for its distinctive sword-shaped leaves. This feature gives the plant its common name and adds visual interest to any aquarium or aquatic environment.

One of the key advantages of Amazon swords is their adaptability. They can thrive in various water conditions, making them suitable for both beginner and experienced aquarists. Whether you have soft or hard water, low or high lighting levels, these plants can generally adapt well.

Amazon swords also play a crucial role in maintaining a healthy ecosystem within an aquarium. They absorb excess nutrients from the water, helping to prevent algae growth and maintain water quality. Their dense foliage provides shelter for small fish and fry, creating a more natural habitat.

Some popular species within the Amazon sword family include:

  • Echinodorus amazonicus
  • Echinodorus bleheri
  • Echinodorus grandiflorus

Each species has its own unique characteristics, such as leaf shape, size, and coloration. Aquarists often choose specific species based on their desired aesthetic or compatibility with other aquatic life in their tank.


The Amazon sword plant is a popular choice among aquarium enthusiasts due to its impressive appearance. Its large, broad leaves resemble swords, adding a touch of elegance to any tank. The vibrant green coloration of the leaves creates a striking effect, making it a visually appealing addition to your aquatic environment.

In terms of size, Amazon sword plants can grow up to 20 inches in height, providing an excellent background or focal point in larger tanks. Its substantial stature adds depth and dimension to your underwater landscape.

To ensure the health and proper growth of your Amazon sword, it is essential to consider certain conditions. Adequate lighting plays a crucial role in promoting its growth and maintaining its quality. Providing the right amount of light will help the plant photosynthesize effectively and thrive in your aquarium.

Proper nutrition is also key for the well-being of your Amazon sword. Offering nutrient-rich food or adding fertilizers specifically formulated for aquatic plants will contribute to its overall health and vibrant bright green appearance.

Taking care of Amazon sword plants require regular maintenance. Trimming any dead or damaged leaves helps maintain its aesthetic appeal while ensuring optimal plant health. Monitoring water parameters such as temperature and pH levels will help create ideal conditions for this beautiful aquatic plant.

Amazon Sword Planting and Propagation

amazon swords planted in an aquarium

Planting an Amazon sword plant requires a nutrient-rich substrate to support its growth. The sword plant, also known as Echinodorus amazonicus, thrives in aquariums with moderate to high lighting conditions. Here are some key points on how to successfully plant and propagate this popular aquatic plant:

  • Plant in nutrient-rich substrate: To ensure healthy growth, choose a substrate that is rich in nutrients. This will provide the necessary nourishment for the Amazon sword’s roots to develop and anchor securely.
  • Propagate through runners or division of rhizome: The Amazon sword plant can be propagated through runners or by dividing the rhizome. Runners are long stems that emerge from the main plant and produce new plants at their tips. Carefully detach these runners once they have developed their own set of roots and leaves, then replant them in suitable locations within the aquarium.
  • Requires moderate to high lighting conditions: Adequate lighting is crucial for the Amazon sword’s photosynthesis process. Provide moderate to high-intensity light sources such as LED lights or fluorescent bulbs to promote healthy growth and prevent stunted development.

By following these guidelines, you can successfully cultivate an Amazon sword plant in your aquarium. Remember to maintain proper lighting conditions, use a nutrient-rich substrate, and consider propagation methods like runner detachment or rhizome division for expanding your collection of these beautiful aquatic plants.

Amazon Sword Tank Compatibility

The Amazon Sword is a popular choice of background plant for community tanks due to its compatibility with peaceful fish species. It provides hiding spots and coverage, making it ideal for fish fry seeking shelter. However, it’s important to avoid overcrowding the tank as these plants can grow quite large.

Here are some key points to consider when adding Amazon Swords to your aquarium:

  • Suitable for community tanks: The Amazon Sword thrives in community tanks alongside peaceful fish species. Its vibrant green leaves create a visually appealing environment.
  • Hiding spots for fish fry: With their dense foliage, Amazon Swords offer excellent hiding spots for fish fry. This helps protect these small, delicate fish like neon tetra fry from potential predators within the tank.
  • Avoid overcrowding: While young Amazon Sword plants may appear small initially, they can grow to be quite large. To ensure their healthy growth and prevent overcrowding, it’s essential to plan accordingly and provide sufficient space.

Amazon Sword Care

Remember to trim regularly: Regular pruning is necessary to control the growth of the Amazon Sword plant. This helps maintain its shape and prevent it from overpowering other plants in your aquarium.

Provide proper nutrients: To ensure optimal growth, supplement the Amazon Sword with root tabs or liquid fertilizers. These provide essential nutrients that may be lacking in the tank’s water.

Maintain suitable water conditions: The Amazon Sword prefers moderate water temperature and pH levels. Aim for a temperature range of 72-82°F (22-28°C) and a pH level between 6.5 and 7.5 for best results.

Overall, taking care of an Amazon Sword involves regular pruning, supplementing with root tabs or liquid fertilizers, and maintaining moderate water temperature and pH levels. By following these guidelines, you can keep your Amazon Sword healthy and thriving in your aquarium.

Frequently Asked Questions

How fast does the Amazon Sword grow?

The growth rate of an Amazon Sword can vary depending on factors such as lighting conditions, nutrient availability, and CO2 supplementation. On average, under optimal conditions, this plant can grow approximately 1-2 inches per month.

Can I keep an Amazon Sword in a small aquarium?

While young Amazon Swords can be kept in smaller tanks temporarily, it’s important to consider their eventual size when planning long-term housing in freshwater aquarium. These plants can reach heights of up to 20 inches with leaf widths exceeding 10 inches. Therefore, it is recommended to provide them with ample space in larger aquariums.

Do Amazon Swords require CO2 injection?

Though not mandatory for their survival, providing CO2 supplementation can greatly enhance the growth rate and overall health of Amazon Swords. However, they can still thrive in low-tech setups without CO2 injection.

Can I propagate Amazon Swords through runners?

Yes, Amazon Swords readily produce runners which can be used for propagation. Simply allow the runners to develop roots and leaves before separating them from the parent plant and planting them in a suitable substrate.

Are Amazon Swords suitable for beginners?

Absolutely! The hardy nature and adaptability of Amazon Swords make them an ideal choice for beginner aquarists. With proper care, these plants can flourish in a variety of tank conditions, making them an excellent starting point for those new to aquarium keeping.

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