Aquariums will not be beautiful if not for the various species of fish and the many plants (not the plastic ones, of course) that you take care of. The colors of the fish, the hypnotic wave of the plants, and the calming sound of water streaming make owning an aquarium even therapeutic. However, have you ever wondered how to grow aquarium plants? In this article, you will learn the best way to have a flourishing colorful aquarium.
Things to Consider Before Growing Aquarium Plants
Before we go on how to grow aquarium plants and maintain them, you need to know the many things to consider before growing them. Here are the few things you need to check first:
Plants need light to do photosynthesis that helps absorb carbon dioxide and give off oxygen for the fish. You can opt for fluorescent or LED tank lights set on a timer to balance the period of the plants to convert energy and to grow. Just make sure the brightness will not stress your plants and fish.
Plants require a great root system, so it is important to provide them fine aquarium soil with a balanced mix of gravel or pebbles. You can also add fertilizers, but make sure it is enough that will not kill your plants and fish too.
Carbon Dioxide Content
Carbon dioxide is essential to plant growth. Adding carbon dioxide to the water will help your plants flourish. However, this is expensive and hard to find.
A healthy and balanced aquarium depends on the equal ratio of the number of fish and the number of plants. An aquarium is a small ecosystem, and too much of the other will surely result in dead plants or dead fish because of less carbon dioxide or oxygen content.
Floating plants are perfect in removing ammonia or other toxins from the water of the aquarium. However, make sure not to have too much of it because they can affect the light requirement of your freshwater plants submerged in the water.
Always research on fish and other aquarium pets, like snails, shrimps, or catfish. Ensure that they are not aggressive to your plants and other fish. For example, shrimps are great for algae removal, but bigger ones may attack and eat your guppies.
Choices of Freshwater Plants
Like researching on the tank mates for the aquarium, researching on the freshwater plants, you are planning to grow for your fish can help maintain one. Beginners can grow the simple java moss. If you are a risk-taker, you can grow dwarf hair grass.
Kinds of Aquarium Plants
Before you know how to grow aquarium plants, I will introduce you to five of the best freshwater plants to grow for beginners.
This is the most common aquarium plant. It grows quickly and is low maintenance. Plus, it looks fuzzy and is a great carpeting plant. Please attach it to a rock to prevent it from floating.
Dwarf Baby Tears
Honestly, this is my favorite carpeting plant for the aquarium. They are beautiful and sturdy. They are great producers of oxygen, which you will see as tiny bubbles under their leaves.
Just like the java moss, this plant is low maintenance. The leaves are thick and striped. You can plant it anywhere in the aquarium, but preferably mid or background areas.
As its name implies, these large, sword-like plants are also a staple for aquariums. It grows fast, beautiful, and low maintenance.
This floating plant is easy to maintain. The only problem is that it grows fast, which might affect the proper lighting consideration for your aquarium. You have to trim and get rid of the excess to maintain balance in your aquarium.
There you have it! These are the easiest and the best aquarium plants you can grow without a sweat. Of course, to have a great looking aquarium, it is not all about plants. You can add some wood or beautiful rocks for the aquarium.
How to Grow These Freshwater Plants
Now you know a few of the best plants to grow, it is time to learn step-by-step how to grow aquarium plants:
- Put your substrate inside your aquarium and level it.
- Wet your substrate using tap water. It is easier to plant in a wet substrate.
- Using your tweezers, grab your foreground plant by the roots and pop them directly into the substrate.
- Lock the plant with your finger and remove the tweezers gently.
- Please do the same with your midground and background plants; place them in the substrate in your desired areas in your aquarium.
- You can also attach your plants to wood by using flour glue and place it in the background.
Now you know how to grow aquarium plants. All that is left to do is apply what you have learned to grow your lush and beautiful aquarium for your fish. Bear in mind that there are many kinds of aquarium plants, and you can research more about them to add more variety in your aquarium and to master further how to tend and maintain them. Always be gentle because these are very delicate things. Also, do not forget: Have that balanced ecosystem in your aquarium, regardless of size. Find out more about aquarium care.