Vallisneria Spiralis: Care Guide And How To Grow In A Home Aquarium

If you are looking for an aquarium plant that provides good looks, great coverage, and ease of care, then the Vallisneria Spiralis could be right up your street. Perfect for beginners, it grows well in a variety of water conditions and is easily available from most aquatic stores.

Vallisneria Spiralis Information

Found in both tropical and sub-tropical freshwater systems around the world, Vallisneria Spiralis has narrow linear leaves that range in color from the palest of greens to reddish. It can grow to an impressive three feet in height, almost an inch in leaf breadth and has flowers that it carries on long spiral stalks.

Being tall and providing dense coverage, Vallisneria Spiralis makes an ideal background plant that timid fish or fry will love to take cover within. It is also often used as a central or corner aquarium filler due to its ease of care and sustainability.

Be aware, however, that it is not the best plant for less spacious aquariums or those that have dim lighting. It can also, once propagating, take over an aquarium and it will do so very quickly.

jungle val
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Species Data

Care LevelEasy
Max Size17-20 Inch
Light LevelModerate
Water ConditionsPh 6-9 Temp range 16-30C

Benefits Of Vallisneria Spiralis

Adding any live plant, not just Vallisneria Spiralis, to an aquarium is highly beneficial. This is due to the fact that not only does it help create a mini eco-system in your tank but it also helps keep your fish healthy. After all, plants produce oxygen that fish breathe, and feed on nutrients they absorb from carbon dioxide and ammonia that your fish produce.

Having plants will also help to keep algae levels down as they will fight with this aquarium nuisance for nutrients. They also enhance appearance, improve water quality, and make for a much more natural fish environment.

Vallisneria Spiralis Care

The Vallisneria Spiralis is rather undemanding when it comes to its care. It will thrive in a wide variety of aquarium conditions and temperatures from 16 to 30 degrees centigrade. No special fertilizers or specialist substrates are required. Rather, it will grow just about anywhere you plant it.

Once planted in an aquarium it can take this aquatic specimen some time to adapt to its new surroundings. This can result in little growth for approximately two months. However, once growing it will propagate extremely quickly, It will soon provide your aquascaping with an impressive long leafed and bushy display.

Vallisneria Spiralis should not be cut back in the aquarium as this can result in leaves turning yellow and starting to rot. Rather, if this plant gets a little too large for space you have given it, simply split the plant carefully at the roots and move. You will also find that an excess of copper which can be found in algae removers and shellfish will be harmful to this plant.

Vallisneria Spiralis Cultivation

As previously stated this aquatic plant’s propagation is impressive with the possibility of over fifty bulbs from a single plant per year. This occurs by daughter bushes forming from runners on the mother plant at the rosette base.

Daughter plants will grow approximately 5 to 10 centimeters away from the mother and once they root, produce runners quickly of their own. Should you wish to move young plants you can do so when they have grown 3 to 4 leaves about 6 to 8 centimeters long.

Vallisneria Spiralis Compatibility

With its rather coarse leaves and bitter taste, the Vallisneria Spiralis is of little interest to most fish species. However, those that like to dig can disturb this plant quite easily and uproot it with very little effort. Aquarium snails are a huge fan of this plant and love to crawl around on it. Fish also like it as it provides security and shelter, a place to hideaway.


  • Does Vallisneria Spiralis need co2 to grow? Co2 is not necessary with this plant although as with all plants they appreciate Co2 and good lighting.
  • Should you give Jungle val fertilizer? Jungle val will grow better if given aquarium plant fertilizer. As too, will most plants.
  • Can you trim Vallisneria? You can trim and cut the leaves to any height you would like with Vallisneria. However, you may get a brown edge where you cut.
  • What other names is Vallisneria known by? Straight vallisneria, tape grass and also eel grass.
  • Is Vallisneria easy to grow? Yes, This is a hardy species which is easy to grow and suitable for most community aquariums.

Conclusion: Vallisneria Spiralis

There is no doubting that Vallisneria Spiralis is a fantastic aquatic plant species that will suit virtually every aquarium setup. It is also child’s play to grow and care for whilst being extremely pleasing to the eye. There are also a number of other varieties of Vallisneria should you wish to mix it up. Species we recommend would include Asiatica, Biwaensis, Nana, Gigantea, and the lovely Americana.