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Crinum Natans (Rosette) Plant: Care Guide, Pictures, Planting & Growing

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By Lindsey Stanton

crinum natans in aquarium

Add life and beauty to your aquarium with Crinum Natans. Crinum Natans, sometimes called Rosette plants, are beautifully lengthy and add life and texture to the aquarium. If you want to add Crinum Natans to your tank, there are some things you need to know.

To learn more about Crinum Natans, read on. This article serves as a complete care guide to these plants, including how to plant, grow, and care for Crinum Natans. Let’s dive in.

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Quick Facts about Crinum Natans

Species Name: Crinum Natans
Family: Amaryllidaceae
Care Level: Beginner to moderate
Temperature: 68-83 degrees Fahrenheit
Color Form: Green
Size: 48-60 inches
Fertilization: Fertilizer for aquatic plants, CO2, and maximum lighting
Minimum Tank Size: Large tank with a lot of room
Tank Set-Up: Medium High lighting access
Compatibility: Freshwater

Crinum Natans Overview

Crinum Natans

Crinum Natans are large aquatic plants that are perfect for some aquariums. These plants are native to rivers and streams in West and South Africa. In these streams, they serve as hides for common fish like Cichlids.

In aquariums, Crinum Natans can provide areas for your fish to hide, but they are pretty to look at and keep the water clean too. Because these plants are so large, they are only suited for large aquariums. The leaves will quickly take over smaller spaces.

Not to mention, Crinum Natans are ideal for beginning aquatic plant enthusiasts. They are hardy, which means they can adapt to many living situations. So, you don’t have to worry about the plant dying during the learning curve period.

Whether you want a single plant for your fish or are trying to breed Crinum Natans, they are relatively easy to care for. This is a great plant to start off with as a result.

How Much Do Crinum Natans Cost?

Crinum Natans aren’t too expensive. You can find small plants for under $20. You might be able to find some plants at local pet stores near you too. Not all stores will sell these plants, though. If you can’t find one near you, look online instead.

Granted, Crinum Natans are more expensive than some other aquatic plants. Because Rosettes are so big and hard, you can save some money by buying only one plant at a time. Hence, most people don’t think twice before purchasing Crinum Natans due to price.

aquarium fishes swimming around the crinum natans plants
Image Credit: Bukharova Liia, Shutterstock

Appearance & Varieties

Crinum Natans are a popular aquatic plant based on appearance alone. Their ease of use is just a bonus! These plants can get very big with long, skinny leaves. The leaves have textures that almost look like pleats or ribbons. Because of the pleats and leave length, the leaves appear to dance in the water.

The coloration of the leaves varies from plant to plant, but they are always green. Most Crinum Natans are bright green, but they can be dark green too. The green color often contrasts against the fish that hide in them in the wild.

The size of the Crinum Natans can vary too. Most plants can grow up to 5 feet, but they grow very slowly. You can get a Rosette plant that looks small simply because it is still growing, slowly but surely.

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How to Take Care of Crinum Natans

Crinum Natans are considered one of the best plants for beginners. They aren’t as sensitive to water conditions as most other plants, but you can still learn crucial aquatic pruning feats with the Rosette.

Even though these plants are hardy, they prefer certain conditions over others. If you take the time to create the ideal habitat for your Crinum Natans plant, it should last a long time. Here are some tips to care for your Crinum Natans plant properly:

two goldfish swimming in front of crinum natans
Image Credit: Mirek Kijewski, Shutterstock

Habitat, Tank Conditions & Setup

Crinum Natans are native to West and South Africa where temperatures are high, and the water is fresh. You want to replicate the plant’s natural conditions as closely as possible for the plant to remain healthy.

Tank Size

Because of how large Crinum Natans are, you need a large tank. This is more for the sake of your fish and the aesthetic attributes of your aquarium than the plant’s health. If you have a small tank, you can get a small plant and prune it as it grows. Because these plants grow slowly, you have time before it outgrows the aquarium.

Water Quality & Conditions

Crinum Natans should have water between 68 and 83 degrees Fahrenheit. The pH should be between 5.0 and 7.0. As you can see, this is a wide range for both. Just keep the conditions within the range and the plant should be healthy.


You need to lay substrate down thick to plant the Crinum Natans plant. Because it has a bulbous bottom, much like an onion, it needs to be thick to hold the plant down. If it is not thick enough, you won’t get the plant to stay or grow correctly.

However, do not place the entire bulb under the substrate. Instead, allow the top of the bulb to remain visible. Make sure to place the plant in the middle of the aquarium too.


One thing that is hard about caring for Crinum Natans is that they require a lot of lighting. Most likely, you will need to add additional light to ensure it gets enough. Most homes do not offer enough natural light.

As a rule of thumb, you want to provide the Crinum Natans plant 5 watts of light per gallon of water. Without enough light, they will turn yellow, start withering, and eventually die.

freshwater aquarium aquascape
Image Credit: Sukpaiboonwat, Shutterstock


Even though Crinum Natans plants are hardy, invest in a good filter for the sake of your fish. Your Crinum Natans might be able to handle gross water, but your fish won’t.


Additional Nutrients and Fertilizer to Give to Your Crinum Natans

Something else that is difficult about Crinum Natans plants is that they need CO2 supplements. You will need to buy a CO2 supplementation device to add enough carbon dioxide into the water for the plant.

You can also purchase a fertilizer for the leaves. Most freshwater plant fertilizer will be good for this plant.

Keeping Your Crinum Natans Healthy

Keeping your Crinum Natans plant healthy boils down to light and enough nutrients. Because these plants are so hardy, you don’t need to fuss over the temperature and pH as much. Instead, focus most of your attention on the lighting and nutrients. If you do this, your Crinum Natans plant should be healthy.

tropical fish aquascape
Image Credit: you sheng, Shutterstock

Growth of New Crinum Natans Plants

Crinum Natans grow via bulb shoots, meaning the main plant will grow new shoots. When this happens, small bulbs should grow on their own. You can lift the plant out of the substrate to remove them. Be gentle when peeling them away. Replant the new shoots elsewhere.

What Fish Like Crinum Natans?

Many freshwater fish that enjoy hiding or sitting on the water’s surface enjoy these plants. Cichlids especially like Rosettes because the plant is the fish’s natural hiding spot in Africa.

You should not put a Crinum Natans plant in an aquarium if you have fish that prefer rapid swimming. The plant will take up space and get in the way of their swimming, which will stress or bore them.

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Are Crinum Natans Suitable for Your Aquarium?

If you have a large aquarium and are looking for a low maintenance plant, the Crinum Natans plant is a great choice. It looks stunning in the aquarium, but it is easy enough for beginners to care for. Just make sure to provide enough light and CO2.

Crinum Natans plants are not suitable for small aquariums. These plants are simply too large for a simple fishbowl. As long as the tank is big enough, the Crinum Natans will complement the tank nicely!

Featured Image Credit: Sardo Michael, Shutterstock

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