Plants can add more colour and life to your aquarium. Plants can maintain the water quality and the pH of your aquarium well balanced. Along with aesthetic qualities planted aquarium is the best in maintaining the peaceful underwater atmosphere for your fishes.
Choosing plants for your aquarium might seem as an easy job as you can find a lot of bundles available in every Aqua shop. But, you need to give equal importance in selected them as you did for your fishes and other tank supplements. Selecting a right plant for your aquarium needs more care than any other essential. There are a wide range of plants available in the market each with their own kind of requirements that you need to know before buying them. Each type of plant will need a different type of care and routine to be followed. So before choosing a plant for your aquarium you need to know all the information associated with it.
Why do you need aquarium plants?
You need to think more than twice why you need to buy aquarium plants. Though these plants offer wide range of benefits to the aquarium you need to consider your reason for buying them. Just analyze your why.
There are lists of goodness they offer,
- It helps in the conversion of carbon dioxide as a breathable oxygen matter for your fishes.
- The harmful chemical wastes such as nitrates are removed from your aquarium by the addition of these plants. They save your fishes from getting harmed.
- These plants aerate your tank by saturating your tank water with oxygen.
- Natural and aesthetic look is a major advantage provided by the addition of plants into your aquarium.
- Fishes prefers to be around plants because they feel sheltered and safe.
- These plants also help in the breeding as some fishes prefer plants to lay their eggs.
- Plants give better atmosphere to your aquarium thereby upgrading its blunt setup.
Addition to all these, plants when placed in the aquarium will help to improve the quality of your tank water.
The quality of water is very important in maintaining the health and wellness of your fishes. If the quality of your tank water drops to the very low it makes your fishes more prone to various kinds of diseases.
The benefits offered by these plants are numerous and these are the reasons why you need to add them to your aquarium. Nevertheless, you need to think more on the reason why you want to incorporate these plants into your aquarium and on how you want your tank to look like when you add these plants.
Live plants come in a lot of shapes, size, colour and varieties. Depending on the size of plants that you choose, you either go for carpeting your aquarium or adding a living backdrop. No doubt, doing both will add new colours to your tank.
Three steps for successful planted aquariums
When designing a planted aquarium there are a several things that you should consider. They are listed below,
STEP 1: Aquarium design – the aquascape aquarium
The design phase is where you need the most concentration in the beginning. Remember that this your aquarium so design it as per your wish. This design setup is where you determine what your aquarium is going to look like.
STEP 2: Selecting the types of plants
Once the designing process is over you need to do more research to find out what kind of plants you are looking for and what kind of plants will suit your aquarium to the best. There are a lot of varieties of aquatic plants like rosette, stem flowering plants, ferns and moss, aquarium for your plants and finally adding plants to aquarium. You can choose from the whole lot.
STEP 3: Adding plants to the aquarium
The third step deals with the selection of the type of environment that is essential for your plants to grow. In this step you will prepare the aquarium for your plants and finally add them to it.
Carefully planning these steps will help you create a beautiful and a healthy planted aquarium.
The different types of aquarium plants
Now that we have a clear knowledge about the role of aquarium plants in the tank, be ready to choose the kind of plant that would suit your aquarium the best. These aqua plants can be classified into three different categories according to where they are going to be placed.
- Foreground plants
- Mid-ground plants
- Background plants
Now let us see about each of them in detail.
Foreground plants – these plants are those that you place in the front section of the tank. They mostly grow shorter and their grow rate is generally slow. Some of these plants are usually referred to as carpet plants because they then to spread at the bottom of the tank rather than growing upwards.
Mid-ground plants – these plants are generally taller than the foreground plants and are ideal to be placed at the corner of your tank or in the middle of your tank. They are the best aesthetic components that you can add without taking much of your tanks space.
Background plants – these types of plants are usually larger in size. They are perfect for placing in the back of your aquarium to create a natural backdrop for you tank as well as a place for your fish to hide.
How to choose your plants?
When choosing the right plants to put into your aquarium, you should also consider some basic information about the aquarium plant varieties.
Plant characteristics – To begin with, investigate how huge various plants can get and their water prerequisites (for example pH, temperature, water hardness, light, and so on). Clearly, you would prefer not to purchase enormous plants for a little aquarium or little plants for a huge aquarium. You additionally need to attempt to purchase plants that have comparative water prerequisites so they will all flourish similarly well in the condition that is given. Likewise, remember that you may not need quickly developing plants along with moderate developing plants in light of the fact that more quickly developing plants can go through the supplements so rapidly that the more slow developing plants don’t get satisfactory supplements.
Similarity: Another thought is the combination of fish and plants are perfect. By all these you need to ensure that the water prerequisites are comparable for both the fish and plants with the goal that it isn’t hard to address the issues of the considerable number of life forms in the aquarium.
Special visualizations: To make an alluring aquarium configuration, have a go at picking plants that have various hues and structures. You can incorporate aquarium plants with shifting hues, for example, red and green plants. Visual intrigue is likewise included by differing between wide leaf and thin leaf plants, just as shifting among tall and wide plants. Orchestrate the plants to make central focuses and backgrounds. Utilizing every one of the three zones, the closer view, mid ground, foundation, and in any event, gliding plants on a top level territory, will help add to the visual engaging quality of the aquarium.
Aquarium Plants and Lighting
Light’s a key essence of vitality for your tanked plants – it permits them to finish the procedure of photosynthesis through which they convert carbon dioxide into vitality. There are a wide range of alternatives for aquarium lighting however not every one of them is perfect for live plants. Your plants will require around 8 hours of full-range light every day – full-range light imitates characteristic daylight and it is the best for photosynthesis. Be cautious about utilizing regular light, be that as it may, (for example, putting your tank close to a window) on the grounds that a lot of light could add to green growth development. The best kind of lighting for a planted tank is artificial aquarium lighting. This type of lighting is exceptionally proficient as far as vitality utilization and the bulbs keep going quite a while. These installations additionally don’t create heat like a few apparatuses, (for example, VHO or metal halide) so you don’t need to stress over overheating your tank. They’re additionally a lot less expensive to operate.
Purchasing and preparing your plants for the aquarium
At the point when you are about to buy the plants attempt to discover solid and youthful ones. Look for any signs that say the plants are not beneficial will have earthy colour and yellow leaves, holey or straightforward leaves, missing leaves, twisted stems, and white or harmed roots. Most plants sold in pet stores are in pots or are sold in drifting packs. For transport home, they ought to be set in plastic packs with air and dampness, or enclosed by wet papers. This will shield them from drying out and getting harmed. At the point when first fitting up another aquarium it is ideal to pick tough plants that root rapidly in light of the fact that the organic framework isn’t yet settled and conditioned.
Plants that are genuinely delicate will make some good imprints and may pass on without any problem. Green growth likewise will in general develop rapidly from the outset before the aquarium is habituated. Tough plants are better ready to adapt to this quick green growth development. It is a smart thought to buy green growth inhibitors, they quickly also to help hold down the algal development. After the aquarium is adequately conditioned, around 4 a month and a half, the tough plants can be supplanted with the less solid plants.
The more delicate plants will have an a lot simpler time in an aquarium that is as of now settled. When home, altogether wash off the plants. Remove them from any compartments, expel elastic groups, and remove any dead roots, stems, and leaves. Frequently new plants will contain snails. For typical aquariums it isn’t important to evacuate them, if anyway you are utilizing moderate discharge compost, you will need to expel any Malayan snails. On the off chance that you plan on having a carefully plant aquarium, you will need to expel all snails which is the most important thing.
Best aquarium plants for beginners
Now that we have seen more about the plants and the method of setting it up. Now let us see about some popular plants used for the aquarium.
- Java moss – this kind of plant does well in clean, well maintained water and it does grows faster in bright light. It is a wonderful carpet plant because it spreads quickly and it is easy to trim. Moderate light is enough for this plant to grow. Has fast growth rate. Very easy to manage.
- Lilaeopsis – known as Brazilian micro swords. It is a short stemmed carpet plant that can grow fully or partially submerged. It can form a dense carpet with the right ingredients provided. It requires high lighting. Has moderate growth rate and it is manageable.
- Dwarf baby tears – it has clusters of tiny leaves which is ideal for breeding tanks. Easy to care and it forms a dense carpet with good light when provided. Requires high lighting and it has moderate growth rate.
- Water wisteria – this plant has lace like leaves and varies in size based on the temperature of water. It can be easily propagated by cutting lower leaves. Requires moderate lighting and has fast growth rate. Easy to handle.
- Amazon sword – it is an ideal background plant that has large and broad leaves. It is easy to care and requires moderate lighting. It also has moderate growth rate.
- African water fern – this plant grows fairly in any given conditions. Once planted it is easy to maintain. Requires high light and has slow growth rate.
- Java fern – it is easy to grow and has different shapes and sizes. It functions well in moderate lighting. If exposed to strong light then leaves may turn brown.
- Anubis – this is the easiest plant for beginners. It is hardy and easy to grow. When planted the rhizome should be left above to prevent rotting. Requires low ligh and has moderate growth rate.
- Cryptocoryne Becketti – popularly known as water trumpet. It is a mid ground plant and it grows well in low to medium light. Easy to handle once planted. Has slow growth rate.
- Aponogeton ulvaceus bulb – beautifully rippled leaf plant that is tolerant and spreads well in any background. A single bulb has up to 40 leaves. Requires moderate lighting and has high growth rate.
- Dwarf aquarium lily – has uniquely shaped leaves. This dwarf lily plant is easy to care. Requires low to moderate lighting and has fast growth rate.
So when choosing the plants for your fish tank use your own creativity.