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Bacopa is a genus of tropical and sub-tropical plants classified as semi-aquatic, seeing as they are capable of living in running or stagnant water as well as dry land. The foliage is thick, fleshy and rounded with snowflake shaped flowers of white or pale blue. They can handle being potted or placed in open soil, but do require some preparation and care to ensure they bloom to their fullest.

Bacopa, also known as water hyssop, is a low-growing flowering plant that is often used in pots and baskets. It produces small, star-shaped flowers in large quantities and features small, rounded leaves. The blooms may be pink, white or blue depending on the variety. Bacopa is truly a perennial but is often used as an annual and blooms from early to late summer.


Bacopa plants require full sunlight, which is defined as direct sunlight for 6 hours each day. This can vary dependent on where the bacopa is being raised. Tropical and sub-tropical zones near the equator, and zone 9 and 10 on the USDA hardiness range, they tend to receive greater amounts of ultraviolet light in a given length of time than areas further from the equator, even if both are defined as direct sunlight. To that end, zones 6, 7, and 8 on the USDA hardiness range must provide eight to 10 hours of direct sunlight for the same amount of light energy to be imparted on the plant. They tend to need an average temperature of 80 degrees Fahrenheit with a low not going beneath 60 for more than a few hours, as they can be damaged by cold very easily.


The bacopa must stay moist at all times, as they are used to high humidity. Watering extensively once every other day rather than lightly watering every day as it best simulates what they're used to when growing naturally. A good way to make sure the degree of watering is appropriate is to use a wood dowel and insert it about eight inches into the soil beside the plant. The entire length of the dowel should be saturated with soil clinging to it when retracted, just like a toothpick being inserted in a cake to see if it's done.

Soil and Fertilizer

Despite the high water needs, bacopa thrive in soil that drains well. To that end, the soil it's planted in should include one-third or one-fourth sand and the rest should be composed of plain soil and loam. The fertilization needs of the bacopa are simple. A regular generalized NPK liquid fertilizer used once every two weeks is sufficient. Slow-release fish meal worked into the soil will see to the bacopa's acidity needs for an entire year.


  • Bacopa plants need full sun. Full sun is at least 6 hours of continuous sunlight daily.

  • Planting

  • To plant bacopa in beds, add compost, soil conditioner, and bark or sand to the soil to prepare it. Space the plants according to the guidelines on the plant tags because they will grow quickly and fill in. Gently remove the plants from their containers and loosen the matted roots at the bottom of the root ball. Place the plants in the ground at the same depth as they were in the nursery container and gently fill the hole. Pat the soil down firmly but don't compact the dirt around it so much that air is cut off to the roots. Finally, water the newly planted bacopa plants well.

    To plant in containers, moisten the potting soil evenly with water prior to putting it into the container. Then add soil to your container so that, when planted, the soil level will reach just below the lip of the pot. Follow the same guidelines as above to add the plants. Soil in containers will dry out quickly so stay on top of your watering routine in particular if you are using pots.

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