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Best Freshwater Aquarium Plants For Beginners

Choosing live plants for aquariums is easy. It’s easy once you know about the different types of plants, how to care for aquarium plants, and where to put them.

Best Aquarium Plants

Live aquarium plants help filter water and keep it clean. They also provide oxygen and hiding places for fish. These are the best live plants for aquariums:

Java Moss

Java moss thrives in clean and well-lit water. It’s a carpet plant and grows on the substrate in the fish tank. It’s easy to care for and maintain.

Aquatic Arts Deluxe Java Moss (Taxiphyllum barbieri, Formerly Vesicularia dubyana) - Large 5x5 Inch Portion - 25 Square Inches of Moss
  • Highest quality moss available! Ships as enough moss to make a 5 by 5 inch (25 square inches!) or larger mat. (loose portion/bunch)
  • Grows along driftwood, rocks, and other surfaces. Can be grown along rear glass for an impressive live plant backdrop effect!
  • Does not need special or high intensity lighting - can be kept in any freshwater aquarium.
  • Great for fish and dwarf shrimp fry! Provides biofilm, hiding places, and security for the young when you place it in a breeding tank.
  • All Aquatic Arts (formerly InvertObsession) brand plants and animals come with a 100% live arrival guarantee, plus free email support directly from the owners!

Last update on 2020-09-19 / Affiliate links / As an Amazon Associate this website may earn from qualifying purchases.

Java Moss.
Java Moss.

Java Fern

Java fern is also a natural plant to grow in fish tanks and does well in lit fish tanks. It’s hardy, easy to care for, and adds beautiful greenery to your aquascape.

Greenpro Microsorum Pteropus Hardy Leaf Black Forest Asian Java Fern Potted Live Water Aquatic Aquarium Plants for Freshwater Fish Tank
  • JAVA FERN BLACK FOREST | Microsorum pteropus, live aquarium plant, no matter what you are beginner or advanced aquarist or if your aquarium tank is low-tech or high tech aquascaped; JAVA FERN is a great choice for you.
  • EASY TO MAINTAIN | It can be grown up to 14 inches which makes suitably for mid or background in your aquarium tank. Tie up on rocks or driftwoods will being well grown.
  • PROVIDES AMAZING ENVIRONMENT | Aquatic plants will produce oxygen and absorb carbon dioxide to enhance water quality in your aquarium community. Adding water fern not only beneficial for the natural ecosystem but also giving shelter and security place for your aquarium pets.
  • BEST QUALITY | With our experience, every plants from Greenpro will be professionally inspected, packed and organized with suitable boxes for all weather conditions to make sure that will retain the freshness and healthiness to our customer hands.
  • HIGH TECHNOLOGY | Our plants grown by using the latest technology and facility with digital controlled nursery to ensure that our plants are diseases pest snail and algae free.

Last update on 2020-09-19 / Affiliate links / As an Amazon Associate this website may earn from qualifying purchases.

Java Fern.
Java Fern

Aquarium Banana Plant

The Aquarium Banana Plant is known for its toughness, as it will grow in low-light setups and can flourish either fully or partially submerged.

Banana Plant (Nymphoides Aquatica) Live Aquarium Plants - Buy 2 Get 1 Free
  • Buy 2 Get 1 Free - Simply Place An Order Of 2 We Will Ship You 3
  • This listing is for: 1 Banana plant, Size ranges from: 1-3 inches
  • Care: easy, Max size: leaves will get very tall and continue growing to the top
  • Live Arrival and Satisfaction Guaranteed

Last update on 2020-09-19 / Affiliate links / As an Amazon Associate this website may earn from qualifying purchases.

A banana plant in an aquarium buried in the substrate.
A banana plant in an aquarium buried in the substrate.

Dwarf Aquarium Lily

Dwarf aquarium lilies are beautiful plants. The unique shape of the leaves adds to the aesthetics of the tank. They are easy to care for, but, you must plant the bulb halfway out of the substrate, or the plant will die.

Aquarium Plants Factory - Dwarf Water Lily Bulb Nymphaea Rubra/Stellata APF Live Aquatic Plants BUY2GET1FREE
  • Sold as a Fresh Bulb without leaves. (Organic Sprouted)
  • Our Dwarf Water Lily bulb is sold fresh with a high growth rate of 99.99%
  • Fresh Organic newly sprouted bulb similar to picture 2
  • Simply wash the bulb in clean water and drop them in the aquarium or pond. You will notice new growth within 8-10 days
  • BUY 2 GET 1 FREE* - Simply buy 2, we will send you 1 extra for free on eligible purchases. Offer valid on the same plant and the same transaction only

Last update on 2020-09-19 / Affiliate links / As an Amazon Associate this website may earn from qualifying purchases.

Dwarf Aquarium Lily
Dwarf Aquarium Lily

Anubias

Anubias and Anubias Nana are easy-to-keep aquatic plants for freshwater aquariums. These come on rocks or driftwood when bought in the fish store. This freshwater plant is slow-growing. So, you have to get one that is the right size for your aquarium.

Greenpro Anubias Barteri Live Aquarium Plants Decoration for Aquatic Water Plants Freshwater Fish Tank
  • ANUBIAS "BROAD LEAVES" : Anubias barteri from Greenpro come with 2" pot size. READY to plant!!
  • STRONG ROOT STRUCTURE : Strong root system and durable dark green leaves, Anubias barteri from Greenpro highly endure to a variety of growing conditions. With proper condition, they will be faster and larger growth.
  • GREAT CHOICE FOR ALL AQUARIST : Because of their strongness and hardiness Anubias would be a great choice for beginner and also make a wonderful foreground, midground and background in your tank.
  • PROVIDES AMAZING ENVIRONMENT : Aquatic plants will produce oxygen and absorb carbon dioxide to enhance water quality in your aquarium community. Adding live plants not only beneficial for the natural ecosystem but also giving shelter and security place for your aquarium pets.
  • HIGH TECHNOLOGY : Our plants grown by using the latest technology and facility with digital controlled nursery to ensure that our plants are diseases pest snail and algae free.

Last update on 2020-09-19 / Affiliate links / As an Amazon Associate this website may earn from qualifying purchases.

Anubias
Anubias

Brazilian Pennywort

Brazilian Pennywort grows fast and has vibrant and colorful green leaves. It is a very fast-growing and low-maintenance plant with large lily-pad-like leaves.

SubstrateSource Hydrocotyle leucocephala Brazilian Pennywort Live Aquatic Aquarium Plant
  • SubstrateSource live aquatic aquarium plant
  • Lime green color with lily shaped leaves
  • Can be used as a background or floating plant
  • Bare root bunch - ready to plant
  • Includes SubstrateSource plant guide

Last update on 2020-09-19 / Affiliate links / As an Amazon Associate this website may earn from qualifying purchases.

Brazilian Pennyworth growing in a fish tank.
Brazilian Pennyworth growing in a fish tank.

Anacharis

Anacharis is a popular aquarium plant with a very lush appearance. It is a perennial plant that’s usually found in ponds, lakes and streams, and canals.

Sale
Mainam Anacharis Elodea Densa Tropical Live Aquarium Plants Freshwater Aquatic Pond Water Decorations 3 Days Live Guaranteed
  • Live Aquarium Plants : Elodea Densa 1 bundle. (7"-9" length)
  • Difficulty - Easy ready to grow! | Light - Medium | Growth - Fast.
  • 3 DAYS LIVE GUARANTEED: In a very rare case our live plant dead on arrive or within 3 days. Please send us the photo within 3 days. Live Guaranteed will be voided after 3 days of delivery. We honor our guaranteed.
  • Photo is not actual plant but is a sample of our stock.
  • Safe for your aquarium pets.

Last update on 2020-09-19 / Affiliate links / As an Amazon Associate this website may earn from qualifying purchases.

Amazon Sword

Amazon sword is an ideal plant for beginner aquarists. It grows large, broad leaves that provide adequate cover for small fish. It is easy to care for and thrives when planted in a loose substrate.

Sale
Large Amazon Bleheri Sword 18-24 inches Tall | Live Freshwater Aquatic Plant
  • Easy live aquarium plant specie for any freshwater aquarium
  • Create a natural habitat in your aquarium for your fish and invertebrates
  • Make your fish tank look natural and beautiful
  • Provide natural resting and hiding places for your smaller fish and invertebrates
  • Perfect for 10+ gallons aquariums

Last update on 2020-09-19 / Affiliate links / As an Amazon Associate this website may earn from qualifying purchases.

Amazon Sword
Amazon Sword

Aponogeton Ulvaceus Bulb

Aponogeton Ulvaceus Bulb is a background aquarium plant that has green flowing, rippled leaves. A single bulb can produce about 40 leaves.

Aponogeton Bolivianus Bulb - - Aquarium Plant for Aquariums with temperatures Under 72F
  • You will get Aponogeton Bolivianus Bulb ready to place in your aquarium. Grows when water temperatures are between 65-72F.
  • The plant will start growing after a week of submerging the bulb
  • Grows fast and large in a few weeks under proper conditions
  • Make your aquarium stand out with this beautiful and hard to find plant
  • Guaranteed to sprout or get free replacement

Last update on 2020-09-19 / Affiliate links / As an Amazon Associate this website may earn from qualifying purchases.

Aponogeton Ulvaceus Bulb
Aponogeton Ulvaceus Bulb

Water Sprite

Water sprite plants are easy to grow freshwater aquarium plants that can survive floating in the water or planted in the substrate.

Planted water sprite growing out of an aquarium.
water sprite growing out of an aquarium.

Water Wisteria

Water Wisteria is a freshwater plant with green leaves that are tall, lace-like and grow broad.

3 Water Wisteria (Hygrophila Difformis), Live Aquarium/Aquatic/Stem Plant by G&Z
  • ORDER MIGHT BE CANCELLED IF THE TEMPERATURE IS ABOVE 85 OR BELOW 35 IN THE NEXT 7 DAYS
  • Each order contains 1 bunch (3 stems) of Hygrophila difformis, 3-5 inche in height
  • A special light for aquatic plants is required to grow water spangles indoor, Stem plant, doesn't come with roots, once planted in substrate, roots will develop
  • Substrate required, Low demanding, medium light, co2 supplementation is not required, Mid-ground to Background plant
  • 100% Alive On Arrival (AOA) Guarantee from G&Z, if there is any problem, just send us a message to receive a replacement

Last update on 2020-09-19 / Affiliate links / As an Amazon Associate this website may earn from qualifying purchases.

Water Wisteria
Water Wisteria

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How To Choose The Right Plants For Aquarium?

There are many types of aquarium plants, and they all need proper care to thrive and give benefits to your tank. Here’s how to choose aquarium plants for a fish tank:

Benefits of Live Plants

Live plants provide the following benefits for an aquarium:

  • They convert carbon dioxide into oxygen for your fish.
  • Live plants remove harmful chemical waste products like nitrates from the water column.
  • Oxygen produced by live aquatic plants helps aerate the tank.
  • Adds a natural look to the aquarium.
  • They act as shelter and protection for fish.
  • They break up sightlines – a benefit for territorial fish.
  • When you add live plants to your fish tank, you are improving the quality of the tank water and the health of your fish.

Types of Aquarium Plants

The three main types of aquarium plants are:

  • Foreground plants
  • Mid-ground plants
  • Background plants

Foreground Plants

Foreground plants placed at the front of your aquarium. They are small and slow-growing plants. Many foreground plants grow outward instead of upward. Usually, they cover the bottom of the tank like a carpet. Hence, they are also called carpet plants.

Examples of foreground aquarium plants are:

Mid-ground Plants

You place these types of aquarium plants along the sides of the tank. Mid-ground plants are taller than foreground plants and generally take up less space.

Examples of mid-ground aquarium plants are:

Background Plants

Background plants occupy the back of your aquarium. These kinds of aquarium plants are taller than both foreground and mid-ground plants.

Examples of background aquarium plants are:

When choosing the right type of plant for your aquarium, you have to consider where in the tank you are going to place the plant. The size of the aquarium also influences the type and number of plants. For example, nano fish tanks need smaller plants.

References:

How To Care For Aquarium Plants

Substrate

Live plants need certain nutrients to flourish. Aquatic plants absorb some nutrients from the water column but absorb most of the nutrition through their roots. Thus, they need a proper substrate.

The substrate is the stuff that lines the bottom of your tank, such as sand, soil, or gravel. For planted tanks with rooted plants, soil is best as sand and gravel provide no nutrients.

Other plants, for example, floating aquarium plants, don’t depend on the substrate for nutrients. Instead, they get most of their nutrients via the water column.

Lighting

Plants also need adequate light to thrive. They need light to carry out photosynthesis, which converts carbon dioxide into energy for the plants.

Some aquatic plants need little light, others need moderate lighting, and others need lots of light.
There are many different options for aquarium lighting, but not all are ideal for live plants.

An LED aquarium light is a good investment for your fish tanks. You can also depend on natural light, but do not expose your aquarium to too much natural light as it can lead to increased algae growth. Although, if you have any of these algae-eating fish, shrimp, or snails, it might not be such a bad thing.

References:

Algae Prevention

Algae can hinder aquatic plant growth as they compete for light and nutrients. But, there are algae-eater fishsnails that eat algae, and algae-eating shrimp that you can add to your tank to help combat algae growth.

To further prevent the growth of different types of algae that grow in aquariums, try not to overfeed fish as leftovers can lead to algae growth.

If you don’t keep snails and other algae-eating animals, scrub away the algae on your tank’s glass using an algae scraper on a weekly basis.

Fertilizer

Like plants in a garden, you can boost the development of aquatic plants using fertilizer. But, you have to use a fertilizer that’s safe for fish and other marine life. An iron-based slow-release fertilizer is best. Avoid phosphate-based fertilizers as they promote algae growth.

Maintenance

Be sure to trim or clip leaves that grow so tall or large that they cover the top of the aquarium. It is to prevent them from blocking light needed by other plants. Always make sure to remove dead and decaying leaves. Follow these tips on how to care for aquarium plants and your aquarium should be bustling with life.

References:

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