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At least two different Alternanthera forms are cultivated under the name "Alternanthera cardinalis". One has especially narrow leaves. However, we offer the customary Alternanthera reineckii 'Cardinalis' that differs from A. reineckii 'Rosaefolia' ('Pink') by wider leaves and deeply dark red, not light red coloration of the submerged leaves. 'Colorata' counts among the relatively few aquarium plants that are really red.
As well as other forms of Alternanthera reineckii, 'Cardinalis' looks most splendid with rather strong lighting and good CO2 and nutrient supply. This stem plant grows quite strongly and is easily propagated by cuttings of stem tips and side shoots.
As a group in the midground to background of not too small aquariums, Alternanthera reineckii 'Cardinalis' provides a strong dark-red colour accent and contrasts well with light green plants. As well as other selections of Alternanthera reineckii, it is well suited to create a "plant street" in Dutch style tanks.