Is Hornwort A Pest?

hornwort Reading & District Natural History Society
hornwort Reading & District Natural History Society from

Hornwort is a type of aquatic plant that grows in many freshwater bodies around the world. Its scientific name is Ceratophyllum demersum. It can be found in rivers, lakes, ponds, and even in aquariums. Hornwort is a great addition to any aquarium or water feature, as it helps to filter out pollutants and provide oxygen to the water.

Hornwort is also an attractive-looking plant, with its bright green leaves and airy appearance. It is very popular in aquariums, and it can also be used in ponds as a decorative element. However, some hobbyists have experienced problems with hornwort becoming a pest.

Why is Hornwort Considered a Pest?

Hornwort can become a pest when it grows too quickly and outcompetes other aquatic plants in the tank or pond. It can also spread quickly and overtake a body of water. It has small, thread-like leaves that can easily be carried away by the current. This means that it can quickly spread to other areas of the tank or pond, where it can become a nuisance.

Hornwort is also very resilient and can survive in various water conditions. This means that it can often outcompete other aquatic plants in terms of nutrients and light. This can lead to a decrease in the growth of other plants in the tank or pond.

How to Control Hornwort

The best way to prevent hornwort from becoming a pest is to keep it under control. This means regularly pruning it back and removing dead or dying leaves. If it is growing too quickly, it can be beneficial to trim it back and spread out the leaves. This will help to slow down its growth and prevent it from spreading too quickly.

It is also important to provide enough nutrients to the other plants in the tank or pond. Hornwort can quickly outcompete other plants if they do not have enough nutrients. Adding fertilizer to the water can help to provide the necessary nutrients to other plants.

The Advantages of Hornwort

Despite the potential for hornwort to become a pest, it is still a very useful aquatic plant. It can help to filter out pollutants from the water and provide oxygen. It also provides a beautiful backdrop for other plants in the tank or pond.

Hornwort is also very hardy and can survive in many different water conditions. This makes it a great choice for aquariums and ponds that are not regularly maintained. It is also easy to care for and requires minimal pruning and maintenance.


Hornwort is a popular aquatic plant that can provide many benefits to an aquarium or pond, including filtering pollutants and providing oxygen. However, it can also become a pest if it is not kept under control. To prevent this, it is important to keep an eye on its growth and prune it back regularly. It is also important to provide enough nutrients to other plants in the tank or pond to help prevent it from outcompeting them.

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