swords for back of tank (old Tom post)


Lifetime Charter Member
Lifetime Member
Mar 3, 2007
Hello all,

Tall vals, etc. are often used for back of tank but flail in the breeze way too much in tanks with good current. In an old post Tom indicated for a new tank setup he sometimes plants H. corymbosa in a long row against the back wall (for fast growing startup). Then in front of the H. corymbosa row plants e.g., swords.

As the tank settles in and swords reach decent size, the H. coymbosa are removed (or relocated), and the swords are pushed toward the back wall taking the place previously occupied by H. corymbosa. The swords are sturdier (then say vals) and are not blasted around as much in current. I'm paraphrasing from memory so forgive me if I got some of that wrong for anyone who remembers the post.

I really like this idea, its smart and I want to try it in new 90gal (24inches high) set up. But I am afraid of and unfamiliar with swords.

Can you recommend sword cultivars that will not take over the world? Perhaps some with more tightly vertical growth habits? I like the look of Rubra from web pics but any suggestions / growth expectations would be welcome. Or alternative approaches with similar goal.