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Hygrophila corymbosa

Posted by Henry Yang on

Hygrophila corymbosa 


it is known as low maintenance and popular plant among hobbyists. It is commonly called as temple plant, starhorn, and giant Hygro. It belongs to the family Acanthaceae and scientifically it is known by two names; Hygrophila corymbosa and Nomaphila corymbosa. It has many variants available in the market. The most acclaimed ones are Glabra, Fineleaf, Red, Stricts, Aroma, Crispa, and Strigosa. The plant is adaptable to verse parameters that is why for hobbyists who are just starting in the aquaculture hobby.


The plant is native to southeast Asian countries like Singapore, Malaysia, India, Thailand, and Indonesia. Although it is not confined to only Asia. It is also known and kept as an exotic plant in Mexico and the USA. It is reported to thrive in captivity, not in the wilds of southeast Asia. It is a centerpiece of many aqua trade industries and plant nurseries. 


The plant has huge green leaves which can reach to a length of 5 inches. Brand new leaves when to grow underwater can be purple. It also produces a beautiful and cute purple flower when at the prime of its health adding more beauty to the aquarium. It is known to be an amphibious plant as it can grow both inside and outside of water. although out of the water it produces rounded and darker leaves.

Tank Requirements

Huge tanks are best suitable for Hygro plant growth. The water pH for the Temple plant should be between 5 and 8. The temperature of aquarium water should be maintained from 72° F to 84° F and hardness should be from 3 to 8 KH. H. corymbosa thrive in a balanced amount of light so 2 to 3 watt of light bulb per gallon giving 5000k to 7000k will be best. Routinely doses of fertilizers with potassium in the range of 5-30mg/l, iron from 0.01-0.5mg/l, phosphates from 0.1-3mg/l necessary for the proper development of the plant. Nitrates are also critical for healthy growth so make sure you supply them in the range of 10-50mg/l. Also, CO2 injections can cause a booming growth of H. corymbosa and it is mostly supplied from 10 to 40mg/l.  

Care and Maintenance

It is usually preferred by the hobbyists to be grown at the back or middle of the aquarium also along the edges of the aquarium. You will see Dutch-style tanks with streets lined with dense vegetation of Hygro plants. The plant has experimented and a lot of verities are produced over the years. Lighting is important in a way that the best lighting can be the reason for the lush and beautiful coloration of this plant. In high light, a bronze shade will appear on the leaves which makes the plant more beautiful. You can plant it in a cluster or singly according to your preference. One thing to be kept in mind it needs pruning frequently so it doesn’t turn into a thick bush. It grows very fast and with CO2 injection the growth can be boosted double fold. The usual height of the plant in the tank is 3 or 4 inches but it can grow up to 24 inches given the health conditions. When you let the plant grow out of the tank it will produce flowers in purple adding more beauty to your tank.

Common problems

Stunted growth of the plant means that nutrition is in inadequate supply. Sometimes surroundings of the veins on leaves start changing into yellow color which means that iron levels are dropping. So, supply supplements containing iron frequently to avoid this situation. Albeit iron is needed in very small amounts but continuous supply is important because the plant is constantly feeding on it.


The plant grows very fast so while pruning any fully grown shoot you can cut a small part and replant it to grow. But a certain rule should be followed in doing that. Cut the stem remove leaves from the bottom of the cutting and replant it in the substrate lightly. The plant will grow in no time. You can prune it for whatever appearance you like accordingly.


To enhance the soothing effect in the aquarium you can dd some species of schooling fish like Trigonostigma espei and heteromorphy Rasboras. The plant is one of the hardy species so you can also add some Cichlids. It will also boost the vibrancy of the aquarium.

Reason for planting

If you want a brilliant underwater view you should have this plant for your aquarium. Hygrophila corymbosa underwater displays a bunch of colors from the darkest of green to pink and then magenta. You will experience a splash of color in the water. Although you will have to take extra care and provide iron supplementation because the coloration solely depends on it. You can also hide your aquarium apparatus with this awesome plant because it spread finely and is bets for cover.

 If you are new to an aquarium hobby or you are lazy or you want a jungle appearance for your aquarium. This plant is the best addition because you won’t have to try hard to take care of Temple green. It will grow on its own, you just have to take small care and supply the water with adequate nutrients. There is also a plus with this plant as you can have any kind of fish with it, big, small, aggressive, neutral. Hope you get all the information from this article regarding Temple green.

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