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Aquatic Plants


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Okay this is my list of truly aquatic plants some are from my own research and others are out of this months Australian Aquarium Keeper. While there are many 'sub varieties' this is just a basic list, feel free to add to this list. If it is a plant in which i have researched i shall place an asterix next to it. there will be a description and there needs whether they require good lighting, ferts and co2.


A plant commonly found in Africa has become more common in planted aquariums as now it comes rooted to driftwood and comes in many 'sub varieties' It is slow growing and will grow in terrariums sizes vary from species. Grows best in high light with co2 ferts are not required if the tank is stocked sufficiently.

Aponogeten - Lace Plants

Lace Plants are one of the most famous aquatic plants, the most famous is of course the Madagascar variety. The leaves are like lattice and the major drawback with lace plants is they have a cooling off period once a year where the leaves die off and all you see is the bulb. It comes in two forms broad and wavy leave forms, can grow fairly large up to 60cm (24") they require extremely high light and do best with co2 and ferts


Bacopa enjoys cooler waters so is ideal with goldies they have bright green leaves and come in an extremely wide range of varieties and needs high light


A very pretty plant that comes in two colours green and purple. It is extremely delicate and is not a good beginner plant requires trimming and thrives in a co2 rich environment


Blyxa comes in two forms it looks like a shrub and comes in dwarf and standard it resembles val and does best in 20degrees celsius lowlight and can take some abuse this is a good plant for anyone who is new to live plants


This plant grows well in tanks it resembles java fern does well in light but will grow equally as well with no lighting requires no co2 or ferts but if they are used it will help the plant grow quicker they are excellent beginner plants maybe one of the best around


This is one of the old favourites in aquariums unfortunately it has grown rapidly in lakes and rivers in the past years having it banned in parts of the US and Australia. There are 3 fine leaf varieties divided from the central stem requires little lighting and some possible co2

*Ceratophyllum - Hornwort

a fine leave plant which prefers hard waters and cool waters this is a good goldfish plant easy for a beginner to care for requires little lighting.

*Ceratopteris - Water Sprite

A plant which grows very fast and is a very good background plant. It is a fine leaf plant and is not recommended for a beginner due to its rapid growth rate will need to be trimmed and the trimmings can be planted which is an added bonus. It is very pretty in a tank, it needs high lighting, co2 and ferts

Cryptocoryne (crypts)

This is one of the more stunning aquarium plants they have some extremely bad habits commonly known as crypt meltdown. They are not for the beginner if you do like the looks of cryptocoryne you should try wendtii as they are very similar to crypts but require alot less work. Requires highlight and ferts

*Echinodorus (sword plants)

While every one has heard of Amazon Sword there are a lot more sword plants than you first think. They can come in all shapes and sizes, there are some swords which can be used as foreground(runner plants) then there are mid ground plants and background plants. From cross breeding specimens there are many different varieties. medium to highlight is must have if you keep sword plants

*Eleocharis (hair grass)

There are 3 forms of hair grass the most commonly found is the dwarf variety which makes a breathtaking lawn of fine leaved grass. the only real requirement for hair grass is high light.


There is really only one variety which is suitable to a life submersed in water. It will grow well in a aquarium and in a pond, it is a real ruff looking plant. Does not require much can with stand some abuse, it does well in low light but can grow in all conditions


These plants are hard to get. The leaves resemble a human kidney. It grows like a weed. Requires medium to high light and needs trimming from time to time


There are many species of hygrophila. They require trimming as they grow quite quickly. It comes in a beautiful green and yellow colour which is quite striking in planted aquariums. I have this in all of my tanks and i have to trim it weekly it grows so fast. I would recommend this to anyone. requirements are they do best in high light but will grow regardless of lighting. I do recommend ferts if you are planning to have it grow to it's fullest extent other wise they are not needed. The added bonus which i like is the cuttings can be replanted and in about a month you will have a bushy vibrant looking plant.

Limnophila (Ambulia)

Finer leaves divide this plant giving it is own unique look it has come about by cross breeding cabomba. In low light the plant will grow out of the water in search for the light it requires and in highlight it will stay submerse for it's life. Requirements does best in medium to highlight with ferts and co2


This plant is really pretty in any tank due it's unusual colouration. it has the normal green colouration on top but the under side of the leave is red, they is now a variety where it is reversed so the red is on top and green is underneath. requirements this plant needs regular cutting back if kept in medium to highlight does best with ferts. While this plant can be kept in lowlight it will take an extremely long time to grow.


This plnt has very fine leaves and is not suited to life with goldfish. does best in a small aquarium with very high light and co2


A small rounded leaf plant on many stems, that generally grow straight towards to the surface. if given time can grow quite dense and resembles hygrophila. will grow in most set ups it can be fiddly to look after but well worth it.

*Microsorium (Java Fern)

There are many variations on this old classic plant. It is good for a beginner as it will grow in hard water with very little light just be warned it has a tendency to die off in warmer water which is why i will give this my award of best plant tp be kept with goldfish smile.gif

Myrophllum (parrots feather)

This plant is south american and mainly found in the amazon, there have been recent discoveries in Australia where parrots feather has been found in the wild. They are generally bog plants will grow in aquaria if it is warm which is why it is better suited to tropical fish

Nomaphila (temple plant)

These plants require cutting every once in a while. They large and dark redish leaves, they can and will grow out of the water with highlighting.

Nymphaea (water lotus)

This plant has spectacular round leaves held by the most delicate stem. While they can be kept submerse it is quite hard as they have a tendency of sending lilypads to the surface. this plant is better suited to a pond as in an aquarium with lighting which it requires it would most likely be burned from the heat of the lighting system


This plant is very bland looking as it comes in brown and translucent leaves. Does best in cooler environment and is quite sensitive to ph,temperature and nitrate fluctuations. Requires medium to high light with co2


Red plants are always breath taking especially in an aquarium the prettiest voted by Australian Aquarium Keeper being R.macrandra this requires high lighting. All species of rotala require high light with ferts and can be trimmed monthly. The trimmings can be replanted.

Sagittaria (sag)

Thin strip leaves which grow straight is broader at the tip then at the base. Grows best in highlight

*Vallinseria (Val)

Similar to sag but much longer is normally used as a background. There are variations in the shape of the leaf they can straight and rigid or can spiral like a spring. There is a giant form which has maroon leaves this plant will live in high to very high light anything below that and it will die.

*Versicularia (Java Moss)

A very hardy plant it will stay in the shape it is molded in when there is high light in low light it will go bushy and loose it's vibrant green colour. This plant makes an excellent spawning media. It can grow on porous surface, as stated earlier does better in highlight.

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