The Japanese cress, aka Chinese Ivy, originates from streambanks and other wet places in East Asia. Under water it forms long, slender stems with roundish leaves, similar to a Hydrocotyle species. Cardamine lyrata is quite undemanding, except that its optimum temperature is about 18-23 °C. Under warmer conditions (maximum: circa 27 °C) the plant develops increasingly smaller leaves. With its somewhat wild, vine-like habit the Japanese cress is most recommended for natural setups. In its terrestrial form it is also suited for moist to wet soil in terrariums.
Cardamine lyrata is actually a marsh plant from Japan. But it is also a familiar aquarium plant which thrives under water with 20-50 cm long stems. A characteristic trailing growth form makes it highly decorative, and ‘aerial’ roots often form on the plant itself.
Plant it in groups, and make sure the water temperature does not exceed 28 degrees C (this makes the leaves much smaller and the plant more leggy). Also suitable in garden ponds in the summer.
This plant is grown locally (Malta) by one of our partner aquarium plant keepers/breeders and is sold as a bunch of 5 runners (mostly rooted) approx. 20cm long.