Micranthemum monte carlo care

Micranthemum monte carlo care

How can you not love this aquarium plant? I mean it’s truly beautiful in pretty much every way. Micranthemum monte carlo care is so easy – it looks great, carpets in your aquarium easily and pots are always a decent size. So where has it come from and where has it been all this time?

In answer, it’s a relatively new aquatic plant into the hobby and it originates from Europe and East Asia – which one is quite correct, I’m not sure. I would go for Asia as their environment is better suited (but I’m guessing!). The leaves to this aquarium plant are fairly round, and probably no more than 4mm in diameter. So imagine it to be a bit like the world famous aquatic plant Hemianthus, just a big bigger. The MAIN DIFFERENCE though is how easy this plant is to grow. Classified as Easy, Micranthemum monte carlo care is straight forward and suitable for beginners and up and that’s because it’s hugely tolerant to a very wide range of conditions. And, it’s great as a carpeting aquatic plant which always rounds things off nicely.

Micranthemum monte carlo careA bit of history on Micranthemum monte carlo care

About 2 years ago, Tropica brought this plant out in the tissue culture form, but they called it Elatine Hydropiper. Then after a several months they realised they were wrong, and DNA sequencing discovered that it’s actually part of the Micranthemum family. The Monte Carlo name, is probably a short term one until they find its true Latin name, so watch this space. Essentially this means it will change its name again…

Why has it shot to fame?

Because it’s so easy to grow and Micranthemum monte carlo care is so easy! You see Heminathus callitrichoides is the most similar plant to this and as mentioned above, it is far harder to grow, and that’s not what hobbyists want. People want aquarium plants that look pretty and grow easily. Now no aquatic plant (to my knowledge) is genetically modified and as a result, we have to work with what we have. But Micranthemum monte carlo care, comes as close to a GM product as any, because it ticks all the right boxes. You can grow it in high light, low light, CO2 tank, non CO2 tank. Literally take your pick. Sure you’ll get much better results if you place it in a high tech CO2 tank (what plant wouldn’t), but my point is how adaptable it genuinely is.

How do you plant it?

Bit like Heminathus. Once you’ve removed this aquarium plant out of its pot, all you need to do is trim the rockwool off so you have about 10mm left. Then you can cut the plant into 6/8 pieces (depending on pot size) and plant straight into the substrate. The rock wool will help to anchor the plant and keep it where you want it to.

How do you trim it?

Very easily and this is why Micranthemum monte carlo care is so easy – simply use a pair of curved scissors and trim the top part off regularly. Failure to maintain this plant results in a build up of plant which can force the bottom half to die off. This would then lift the plant off your substrate – funny at first then the penny drops. So trim regularly and heavily. But one tip is once you have planted for the first time, avoid trimming until you have let it settle in for at least 2 weeks. Below I’ve found a useful video of someone trimming it. It’s also worth noting the excellent use of a circulation pump which is positioned directly over the Micranthemum monte carlo. This is a perfect example of why carpeting plants benefit from this – any nutrients are pushed right on top of the plant, and this is another reason why its flourishing in this environment (I recommend you do the same and you can find our circulation pumps by clicking here)

How many pots do I need?

We get asked this question A LOT! For most foreground plant, aim for one pot per 225cm2 (15x15cm). Use this calculation. So for example in a tank which is 60x30cm you would need 8 pots (1800/225).


If you’re looking for a beautiful carpeting aquarium plant that is easy to grow and perfect in a wide range of conditions, then Micranthemum monte carlo is ideal. If you’re looking to purchase this plant, you can find it by clicking here.

35 thoughts on “Micranthemum monte carlo care”

  1. Sir,
    I am trying to grow Montecarlo in my aquarium from last 6 months but I dont know why it cant grow, after planting New Plants it is looking Good and healthy for 1 week but after 1 week it change color to brownish and new leaf comes very small in size,
    I was setup my tank with power sand and all powder fertilizers which is recommended by ADA.

    Now I was trying to plants a Montecarlo Mat but I have not satisfied with the result
    please guide me.

    1. Pretty weird though but u can try my strategy , as my tank was too deep i have lowered the water level and with very few fish and lighted strongly the plant showed great response growth was amazing with no Co2. Hope it helps you too but keep a close watch on algae growth .

    2. if you used ada substrate then you would of had to wait 3/4 weeks before planting or adding fish. this is because of the large ammonia spike. so test your water. if there is little to no ammonia and if it has been 3 to 4 weeks since adding the ada substrate then you should be ready for planting.

      i had the same problem but with other plants.

    3. Probably it might have been potassium deficiency (change of colour in leaf) try adding your tank with seachem flourish and potassium supplements together with co2 supply…can have an optimal care for that

      You may have to little light, how big is your tank;
      How much water does it hold?
      How deep is tank?
      Lighting used?
      Duration of light?
      Soil type and is it nutrient added like ADA soils – not Powersand but the grain sized soils they sell?

      Assuming you have the right temps(25-26 Celsius) and you mentioned fertilizing, then the only other factor would be your lighting and then think about adding additional CO2 via a canister or just DIY “yeast- o-sugar mix to see the amazing effect that CO2 can have on your plants. I have noticed that plants adapt easier and tend to thrive when the right amount of additional CO2 is added.

  2. How well do these do in sand substrate. Do you need soil?
    What is their compatibility with bottom feeders such as Cories and Kuhlii Loaches?

    Also, you wrote:
    “For most foreground plant, aim for one pot per 15cm2. “
    I believe you meant to say “one pot per 15x15cm” (225cm2)

    1. All plants should be planted into a nutrient rich substrate. Planting them in sand puts them into an immediate disadvantage as there are no nutrients in sand.

      15cm2 is 15x15cm

  3. Hi,
    I have Monte Carlo as a carpeting plant and it has been doing really well for a few weeks. However, last week I added some drift wood to the tank. After a few days it had grown a thick layer of opaque white(ish) fungi/algae (I’m not sure what it is) all over it, so I removed the wood. Since then however, my monte carlo carpet has declined. It’s still rooting and spreading well, but the leaves have started getting darker, with some going completely brown. I can also see little clumps of what appears to be the same whitish fungi from the wood in certain areas of the tank.
    Is there anything I can do to remove it? Or could it be something else at fault? My water quality is good week by week, but I lack a phosphate test kit so it could be algae.
    I have one fish in the tank, a SFF called Artemis! It’s a 60litre tank.
    Thanks in advanced!!

    1. Hi Jonny

      The fungi on your wood sounds very normal and is the sap coming out. It won’t effect plants so avoid putting 2 and 2 together and getting 5.

      When fungi appears on wood, just scrape it off. It might take several goes but this is why it’s always best to leave wood soaking in a bucket for a couple of weeks.

      Regarding the health of your monte carlo – what fertilisers are you using and are you using liquid carbon?

  4. Hello !

    I planted Micranthemum monte carlo over a month ago at first they where a nice light green now the tops are turning dark green. I planted them in small patches to spreed them out.

    I’m running co2 at 30 ppm set up with a ph controller and kh is 4dkh and GH 4 and p.h is 6.6 . lighting is 4 x t5 ho bulbs 45 wats each. i have lots of power heads for movement. The only thing i can see is my lighting system is to far from the bottom of my tank it’s 32 inches from the Micranthemum monte carlo plants. I run the lights for 6 1/2 hours a day and always at the same time if i go longer lighting i start to get green spot algae. I also have a dosing pump that gives 8 ml of macro and 8 ml of micro every day one hour before lights come on plus i put root tabs in the Eco complete gravel. Any help would be great thanks in advance Charlie.

    1. Dark green is normally desirable – they’re probably just adjusting to life underwater.

      But green spot algae indicates a deficiency in phosphates so you need to add more ferts.

  5. Hi,
    I have a high tech planted tank. I have pressurized CO2 system with 2 bpm, I dose Seachem Potassium and Iron but my Monte Carlo plants are turning brown. New leaves are growing and bright green but are small. Every week I can see algae growth on the glass of the tank. Can you say that is this normal that monte carlo leaves are turning brown or there is some deficiency in my tank.

  6. I noted above that you indicate this species is European or Asian, yet Tropica indicates the plant is S. American. Granted, a plant grown in-vitro isn’t “from” anywhere – per se. Tropica only lists two plants with the Micranthemum sp. name – and both are listed as originating in the Americas.

    I’m about to try growing this plant in an emergent state — along with a little ‘Cuba.’ Wish me luck 😉

    1. You are right RSJ,
      I live an Jamaica and they do not allow imports of any type of aquatic plant, as they are trying to preserve their natural eco so presently I have to research all the plants I wish to import and give the government a full run down of all the plants origins, care data etc. to make sure none are evasive or are on the Federal Noxious list.

      These mistakes set me back a year. I had to re-file everything.
      “Monte Carlo” is actually from Argentina.

      Fingers crossed on getting my permits, can’t wait to start aquascaping with MOnte

  7. I have a 120*50*60 cm tank and I used Monte Carlo as carpeting , I had the tank from 10/9/2017 but now the color is very light seems like transparent, my ph is 7, the co2 is on for 5 hrs, the lighting is same, and I’m using stability, flourish excel, phosphorus, nitrogen, potassium, first week I changed water 20% daily

  8. I planted Monte Carlo without co2 for 2 weeks they became weak and brownish and most of them died. Then I started providing proper fertilizers and co2.I could see the difference they are getting better how long would it take to become health and grow like it normally does?

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  11. Biofilm! Happens with many organic things in a fish tank! Its healthy not deadly!

    A chance it could be sap as well but most likely if thats the case there’s still no harm!

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