How to Make Red Root Floaters (Phyllanthus Fluitans) More Red

Red Root Floaters (Phyllanthus fluitans) are a popular choice among aquarium hobbyists for their vibrant colors and unique floating nature. Achieving the desired reddish hue requires understanding the plant's physiological needs and environmental conditions. Here's a detailed guide on how to make your Red Root Floaters redder.

1. Light Intensity and Spectrum

Optimal Lighting:

  • Intensity: Red Root Floaters thrive under high-intensity lighting. Aim for at least 2-3 watts per gallon if using fluorescent lights, or equivalent LED lighting.
  • Spectrum: Use full-spectrum lights that provide a balanced range of wavelengths. Red and blue wavelengths are particularly important for photosynthesis and pigmentation. LED lights with adjustable spectrums can be beneficial.

Scientific Basis:

  • Photosynthesis and Pigmentation: High light intensity enhances photosynthesis, leading to increased production of anthocyanins, the pigments responsible for the red coloration. Red and blue light spectra specifically boost these pigments.

2. Nutrient Management

Nutrient Ratios:

  • Nitrogen (N): Maintain moderate nitrogen levels. Excessive nitrogen can lead to lush green growth at the expense of red pigmentation.
  • Phosphorus (P) and Potassium (K): Ensure adequate levels of phosphorus and potassium. Phosphorus is essential for energy transfer and metabolic processes, while potassium aids in overall plant health.
  • Micronutrients: Iron (Fe) is crucial for red pigmentation. Supplement your tank with chelated iron if necessary.

Scientific Basis:

  • Nutrient Limitation: Limiting nitrogen while providing ample phosphorus and potassium encourages the plant to produce more anthocyanins. Iron acts as a catalyst in chlorophyll synthesis and red pigment production.

3. Water Parameters

Optimal Conditions:

  • pH: Keep the pH between 6.5 and 7.5. Slightly acidic to neutral water supports nutrient uptake.
  • Temperature: Maintain a temperature range of 70-82°F (21-28°C). Consistent temperatures within this range promote healthy growth.
  • Hardness: Soft to moderately hard water (GH 4-8, KH 2-5) is ideal.

Scientific Basis:

  • pH and Nutrient Uptake: Proper pH levels ensure the availability and absorption of essential nutrients.
  • Temperature Regulation: Consistent temperatures within the recommended range optimize metabolic processes, enhancing overall plant health and color.

4. CO2 Injection

CO2 Supplementation:

  • Importance: Injecting CO2 into your aquarium can significantly boost growth and coloration.
  • Levels: Aim for CO2 concentrations of 20-30 ppm (parts per million).

Scientific Basis:

  • Carbon Assimilation: CO2 is a critical component of photosynthesis. Higher CO2 levels enhance photosynthetic efficiency, leading to increased biomass and intensified pigmentation.

5. Water Flow

Flow Dynamics:

  • Moderate Flow: Ensure moderate water flow to prevent debris accumulation on the floaters while avoiding strong currents that can damage delicate roots and leaves.

Scientific Basis:

  • Oxygenation and Nutrient Distribution: Adequate water flow improves oxygenation and ensures even distribution of nutrients, promoting healthy growth and vibrant coloration.

6. Regular Maintenance

Pruning and Cleaning:

  • Pruning: Regularly prune your Red Root Floaters to remove old or damaged leaves and encourage new growth.
  • Cleaning: Keep the water surface clean from organic debris and algae to ensure optimal light penetration.

Scientific Basis:

  • Growth Stimulation: Pruning stimulates new growth, leading to healthier and more vibrant plants.
  • Light Penetration: Clean water surfaces ensure maximum light exposure, crucial for photosynthesis and pigmentation.


Making your Red Root Floaters (Phyllanthus fluitans) redder involves a careful balance of lighting, nutrients, water parameters, CO2 injection, water flow, and regular maintenance. By understanding and optimizing these factors, you can enhance the natural beauty of these stunning aquatic plants.

Key Points to Remember:

  • Use high-intensity, full-spectrum lighting with emphasis on red and blue wavelengths.
  • Maintain balanced nutrient levels, particularly focusing on limiting nitrogen and providing ample phosphorus, potassium, and iron.
  • Keep water parameters within the optimal range for pH, temperature, and hardness.
  • Supplement with CO2 to boost growth and pigmentation.
  • Ensure moderate water flow for oxygenation and nutrient distribution.
  • Regularly prune and clean to stimulate growth and maximize light exposure.

By following these scientific guidelines, you can achieve the rich, red coloration that makes Red Root Floaters a standout feature in any aquarium.


Our Guarantee

When will items ship?
Most items ship out in 1-3 days, excluding holidays when the post office is closed. If you would like to receive your item faster, we recommend purchasing Priority Mail. If there is severe weather, we will sometimes print the label but not ship your package until after the weather has passed, in order to ensure safe arrival.

DOA/Damaged Claims:
It is our honor and privilege to serve you. We hope that you are satisfied with everything. If for some reason you are not satisfied, please let us know as we are here to make this hobby easy and enjoyable!


We guarantee live arrival on all of our livestock. In the rare event livestock shows up dead, we must be notified within 2 hours. Keep in mind these plants just took the journey of their lifetime in a dark box for 2-4 days so they will take time to recover and be at their best again. Please Take clear photos of the dead product and send it to us within 2 hours of receiving the item and once the item is validated by us we will send a replacement or refund minus the cost of shipping. Failure to comply with one or more of these policies will mean we can no longer cover you.If you are concerned about extreme heat or cold, we highly recommend having the post office hold your mail for the estimated delivery day. This is a completely free option which can be requested online via or in person at your local post office. This way, your package will remain indoors, protected, and out of the elements for you to pick up once the package has arrived.We guarantee live arrival of all livestock. This means we assure that live stock will show up alive. We do not guarantee your success in keeping the livestock alive/healthy. Lots of outside factors that we cannot control go into the success or failure of keeping livestock healthy. We are here to help but are not liable after you have received the livestock alive.

Shop with Confidence