Aquarium plants are one of those things that can transform a boring aquarium into a masterpiece and fish haven. Still, bringing inadequate plants to a fish tank can make your fish anxious and stressed. Some prefer to swim in a completely plantless aquarium. The whole aquarium is a living being, or better said – an ecosystem. This ecosystem is quite fragile since we are talking about a rather small body of water. One small mistake leads to disastrous consequences. Wrong alkaline levels can be deadly for both fish and plants, and it is not that easy to combine everything to your liking. Sometimes you have to let nature dictate it’s way and follow along like a good student.
The whole aquarium thing can be a bit overwhelming, at times. That’s why only the ones who are truly in love with the idea of arranging and maintaining an ecosystem endure and provenly thrive. You can quickly get hooked to balancing and juggling various factors. The reward is priceless – a home decor masterpiece that leaves everyone in awe.
Aquarium plants require time to thrive
Plants in general, have their specific needs and ways of being. Some plants thrive in extreme conditions – in the middle of a dessert, with no rain for months. Some thrive submerged underwater, while others suffer if you water them too much. These preferences are not plants’ caprice, but a result of adjusting to evolutionary changes. Simply said, plants don’t consider their unique natural habitat as an extreme one, or not. It is their natural habitat, and they thrive in it. Extremeness is only beheld in the eye of a man. And living underwater is definitely an extreme, according to a man.
Still, plants that are used to living underwater are not used to living in just any water. Just like fish, some aquarium plants prefer cold, some warmer water. Some plants prefer high pH levels; others prefer lower. Add fish to the mix, and you got yourself in a lot of trouble. Some types of fish are naturally used to swimming among fluttering leaves; others mingle between tree roots. And cichlids, for example, prefer to be only living beings in an aquarium.
The most puzzling thing is when you figure everything out, plant the right plants in an aquarium with perfect water conditions, and it just looks sad. Usually, the plants you can purchase are smaller in size, so that they can accommodate easily and survive to replant. To reach their full size, you have to be patient and maintain perfect conditions.
Aquarium plants require attention and care
Fish keepers sometimes go overboard and turn their fish tank into an underwater botanical garden. There’s nothing wrong with that, as long as you are doing it intentionally. However, perfect conditions for plants can lead to the plant overgrow and turn your aquarium into a green mess.
Trimming and grooming is a must, for some types of aquarium plants. Plants are living creatures. They grow, they replicate. Regarding an aquarium keeping, the primary purpose of plants is to mimic the natural habitat as authentic as possible. Aquariums only resemble natural habitats and are countless times smaller than a lake or a river. Although we witness plant overrun in nature, it is different when you have a body of water as big as a lake. Too many plants in the aquarium can mess up with pH levels, oxygen percentage, visibility, and light, etc.
Interesting and useful aquarium plants that are easy to keep
Not to contradict ourselves, but not all plants are hard to keep and grow. Anubius Nana is species that can live in almost all freshwater conditions. And it looks pretty, and it’s perfect for aquascaping.
One the most common aquarium plants is the Amazon Sword plant. Easily recognized by its long, pointed leaves, these aquarium beauties grow up to 20 inches and fast. Usually, these plants are kept in the back, slightly away from the background to ensure flow and space for movement.
As the name says it, this aquarium plant is petite in size, but it surely adds up to whole aquarium look. It is best combined with stone-like backgrounds and decor. Have in mind that if you get all conditions right, this dwarf can become a giant, and make sure to trim it now and then.
Marimo Moss Ball
One of the cutest aquarium plants out there. Initially found in some Japanese lakes, this round ball of freshwater algae is more than an astonishing piece of decor. This is not moss, but a ball-like formation of algae. The become round naturally, since algae roll on the rocky bottom of a lake, due to waves and water current. These balls “eat” nitrates and exhale oxygen, so it’s useful to have them around. Just make sure to squeeze them from time to time, and form the ball shape with your hands. And don’t be surprised if some fish species start rolling it around the aquarium.