Tips On Live Aquarium Plants For Beginners

There’s nothing quite as peaceful as watching colorful fish swimming in an aquarium.

And whether you’re new to owning an aquarium, or have had one for years, adding aquatic plants to the environment can be a great way to give your fish tank even more visual interest.

fish in aquarium

With the right plants, you can even get better views of your favorite fish!

Wondering how to get started? Consider these tips on live aquarium plants for beginners to help you “dive in!”

Caring For Aquatic Plants

There are many different types of aquatic plants that you may want to add to your aquarium, and knowing how to care for them is essential.

While some plants may thrive on their own in a properly balanced environment, others may need special nutrients for aquatic plants to stay healthy and vibrant.

Decide before you start picking out plants whether you’d prefer easy-to-maintain aquatic plants or if you’re willing to put in a little more work to get the look you want.

That way, you’ll choose plants that match the level of care you want to put into them.

Categories of Live Aquarium Plants

1. Foreground Plants

The first plants to consider for your fish tank are foreground plants. These aquatic plants are low-growing and sit at the front of the aquarium.

If you have lots of smaller fish in your tank, foreground plants are an especially good choice for their environment.

The plants give them a place to blend into, while still letting you see and enjoy them as they move through the tank.

Smaller fish may also form schools in foreground plants, which can look fantastic if you have a large tank and want to have an interesting display to look at.

Some foreground plants to consider are:

  • Dwarf Baby Tears – This plant has a vibrant green color and is especially helpful in creating a healthy environment for your fish by adding oxygen and absorbing nitrates from the water.
  • Java Moss – Java moss is one of the easiest aquatic plants to grow, making it a great option for those using aquatic plants for the first time.
  • Brazilian Micro Sword – This is a grass-like plant that can add an attractive look to your tank, but it can be trickier to grow due to its need for higher light levels.

2. Midground Plants

Midground plants are taller plants that sit more toward the middle of a fish tank.

Since the middle of the tank is generally the focal point, this is the place you should put your most colorful and interesting aquatic plants.

You can also pair your midground plants with your favorite aquarium decorations, as well. Colorful glowing aquarium decor can look especially striking in this part of your aquarium.

Fun midground plants to add to your aquarium include:

  • Anubias Nana – This plant has a vibrant color and larger leaves that add an attractive look to the middle of your aquarium.
  • Cryptocorynes – There are many different varieties of cryptocorynes to choose from. They’re a popular choice since they don’t require excessive light or nutrients.
  • Alternanthera Reineckii Mini – This smaller version of the Alternanthera Reineckii is a popular midground choice due to its striking red color, which helps provide visual interest.

3. Background Plants

Background plants are ones that sit at the back of a tank. Usually, background plants are the tallest ones, and they’re often used to help block out the back of the tank entirely.

These larger plants also provide your fish with a safe and comfortable place to hide.

Popular plant choices for background plants include:

  • Water Wisteria – This fast-growing background plant is especially useful for keeping ammonia and nitrates at a healthy level for your fish.
  • Hornwort – This easy-to-grow background plant is useful for improving oxygen levels in fish tanks.
  • Red Flame Sword – These plants are popular because of their striking red leaves. They’re best suited to larger aquariums.

Adding Lighting

Proper lighting is important in any aquarium, not just for properly viewing your fish, but also to help ensure plants have the light they need to grow.

Make sure to research the light needs of the plants you choose, and then tailor your lighting to ensure your plants stay healthy and your overall display is visible to be enjoyed.

live aquarium plants in tank

There are all kinds of different live aquarium plants for beginners that are easy to grow and care for.

And you’re sure to love the way they add extra beauty and interest to your fish tank, turning your tank into a beautiful piece of home decor.

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