Adding green plants to your aquarium brings life to it. Not only does it add color and beauty to it, but it is also beneficial for the fishes living inside of it. From balancing out pH to providing oxygen, aquatic plants do it all.
But there are various kinds available, and each of them requires different methods of the plantation. You will only have to go through this article to learn how to plant aquarium plants. (different types)
Everything will be explained in detail so that you are ready to start planting as soon as you are done reading this article. Let’s get started.
How to Plant Different Types of Aquarium Plants
I am not going to talk about 1 or 2 types of plants over here. Actually, I am going to highlight 9 types of aquarium plants and how you can plant them.
If you want to plant these kinds of plants in your aquarium, you should go for Anubias, Ferns, and Microsorum. The roots of rhizome plants grow downwards while the leaves and stem grow upwards. Leaves of this plant grow from a very thick and horizontal trunk.
Now, coming to the plantation part, it is not very complicated, really. You can either use glue or use a thread to connect it with a ledge. You can also put it in the middle of the cracks in rocks.
A substrate is not essential for the growth of rhizome plants, but if you plan to use it anyways, you have to ensure that the plant doesn’t get covered at any cost.
You have to put in enough quantity of a fertilizer which is an all-in-one liquid. One other thing that you have to make certain of that the roots are buried up to the height of the plant.
The name of these plants was given because the leaves have a resemblance to sword blades. Red flame sword and echinodorus are widespread kinds of sword plants.
These plants are better off in the background of your aquarium as they tend to grow very tall. If you place it towards the front, the full view of your tank will be entirely blocked.
There are a few steps that you have to follow in order to plant them successfully. Put your fingers to good use and make a hole in the substrate. After that, choose the kind of sword plant you want and place it in the hole you have created. Then you have to cover up the roots within the substrate.
But one thing you have to keep in mind is that you have to make sure that the base of the thing is not covered at all. If you cover it up, then the leaves won’t be able to come out.
Also, use a variety of root tabs if you decide to utilize an inert substrate.
Aquarium grass really ties up the entire look of the tank. It is a quite popular type of plant as this is very similar to the grass of a garden. This is very easy to grow, even for a beginner.
After buying the aquarium grass, you have to take it out of its pot, and then you have to run it underwater so that the rock wool comes off easily.
Now you have to take a pair of scissors and divide the plant into 7 to 8 pieces. The excess roots have to be shaved or trimmed nicely. With the help of a tweezer, place it on the substrate. Be sure that your grip over the plant is strong.
You now have to shake the thing a bit in order for the roots to be surrounded by the substrate.
Carefully, you need to take away the tweezers. The substrate should remain in its position. Repeat the exact same steps to plant the remaining 6-7 pieces. The distance from one piece to another has to be at least 3 cm so that they can grow properly.
Other similar plants to rhizomes are mosses. This means that they also don’t require any substrate in order to grow. The most available type of moss is Java moss and Christmas moss. They don’t need ours and are usually sold as décor pieces or in driftwood or are fixed to a mesh square or rectangle.
The process of planting mosses is quite simple. You have to attach a thread or glue it to a hardscape, and you will be good to go.
Did you know that mosses have the capability of growing into a big, free-floating mass? This is ideal for when the fishes are breeding. The baby fishes can use this as cover and hide here.
Mosses also add beauty to your aquarium tank and are, in fact, in demand.
In this case, your fingers aren’t the way to go. You actually have to get pinsettes to place the stem plants precisely into the substrate. A soil-based substrate is an ideal choice when working with stem plants as it is not very dense, and the bigger grains allow an effortless plantation.
You have to take the stem plants in the pinsette at a 45-degree angle. Place it in position ( about 3 to 4 cm beneath the substrate level) and bury it. Wiggling is the key after this step.
Wiggle the tool so that substrate fills up space around the plant. Gently and carefully remove the tool and be sure that the plant is in its designated spot.
Bulb and Tuber Plants
Under running water, put the bulb or tuber plants to eliminate all the remaining substrate and rocky wool. After doing that, all you have to do is to station it above the substrate. If the bulb or tuber begins to float, you should hold patience and sit back for it to sink bank.
One other thing you could do to keep it stationed in its position is to use a hardscape. That way, it will be weighed down and won’t be able to move at all.
You will soon start noticing new leaves growing out of it and will see roots coming out of the bulb. Turnover the bike or tuber if no growth is seen in about three weeks.
These types of plants have the tendency to grow tall, and their leaves can also touch the surface of the water. Their source of nutrients is liquid fertilizers and as well as root tabs.
The carpeting plants basically is used to cover up the ground of your aquarium tank to make it look like, as its name suggests, a green carpet. Glossostigma and Eleocharis are examples of carpeting plants. These are dense and short in size and have several small leaves with delicate roots.
Planting these is no rocket science. The thing that you have to do is to put the pot that has arrived in the substrate. From there, the plant will grow out like a carpet in your tank. When you see that the carpet has properly grown out, you will have to cut the part that is potted.
Floating plants are, perhaps, the easiest ones to plant. All you must do is place it on the water surface of your tank. But you have to ensure that the surface of the water is not covered entirely by it.
This could cause the oxygen level to drop in the tank, and there would also be less light reaching it. Not only would it risk the life of fishes in the tank, but it could also lead to other plants over there dying because of the lack of proper lighting.
Also, dunk a lot of liquid fertilizers because they need it and do certify that the current is not that fast.
Lastly, don’t allow their leaves to get extremely wet.
Some examples of floating plants would be duckweed, dwarf water lettuce, etc.
Another name of Cryptocoryne is crypts. They are one type of rosette plant. Cryptocoryne Tropica, Cryptocoryne Lutea, Cryptocorean Parva, Cryptocorean Lucens and, Cryptocoryne Venditti are quite common.
In order to fo fully grow, they need a substrate and a good amount of root tabs. The plantation process is very similar to that of sword plants.
You have to keep the base of it above the ground while the root is buried. One thing you’ll notice when placing it inside the aquarium tank is that the leaves fall off, and the plant melts. Don’t be alarmed at all, and don’t make the mistake of throwing it away.
Give the plant some time to get accustomed to its new surroundings. Once it has been settled, you’ll see, the leaves that were submersed will slowly start to make appearances.
I would suggest you do the trick of cutting away the leaves that are emersed. That way, the plant will be able to grow the submersed leaves nicely. You can utilize this method for all kinds of Cryptocoryne other than Cryptocoryne Parva as they don’t tend to melt in a new surrounding.
How to Plant Aquarium Plants in Gravel
Now that I am done talking about the different types of plants, I will move on to teach you how to plant aquarium plants in gravel. The method is simple and consists of only a few steps.
It won’t take you long to grasp on to it. So, without further ado, let’s get you acquainted with all the simple steps this process has.
Step 1: Know Which Plants You Can Grow In Gravel
You can just pick out any kind of plant, place it in gravel, and expect it to grow very nicely. It doesn’t work like that. Only some plants can properly grow in gravel, so you must pick those out first.
Step 2: Layering Up
You should layer up the gravel to at least 2 to 3 inches above the tank’s floor.
Step 3: Adding Fertilizer
Without a proper fertilizer, there is no chance for a plant to grow out to its full potential. So choose a fertilizer according to the plant you have picked to plant. Add the right amount of it, or else the growth might be very slow.
Step 4: Planting The Plants
This step is one of the most crucial steps, and this is when you add the plant to the gravel. Be very gentle with and use a steady hand to carry out this process. The plants should be covered by the substrate above or up till the level of their roots.
Step 5: Use Fish-Safe-Rock
When you are trying to plant in a tank that has already been established, you must use a fish-safe-rock so that it stays in its position because of the additional weight. You can simply do this by attaching the rock to the plant with the help of a rubber band.
Don’t use any other kind of rock as it might harm the fishes in your tank.
How to Plant Aquarium Plants in Sand
It might sound weird and next to impossible, but yes, you can grow plants in the sand! Not just any plants, actual aquarium ones!
Do you want to know how to plant aquarium plants in sand and how easy it is? Stay with us here and give this section a good read to have a proper grasp of the whole process.
Step 1: Choosing The Plants And Washing The Sand
Since I am talking about sand over here, you should know that fragile and delicate plants such as dwarf water lettuce can’t grow in such a situation. But in contrast, hardy plants such as Amazon sword plants, Java fern, Cabomba, etc., can grow just fine in the sand.
Do not forget to wash the sand. If you fail to do so, you might be putting your fishes at risk of getting harmed.
Step 2: Adding Adequate Amount Of Nutrients
In order to have well-grown plants in the sand, the substrate needs to have enough nutrients so that the plants can live off of it and reach their potential growth properly.
Your tank must have nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium in large quantities, as plants really need them. Magnesium, boron, and iron are also vital but in small amounts.
So before the plantation, add several root tabs to the substrate. This is for the plants that take up nutrients from their roots.
The case isn’t the same when it comes to the plants that take up nutrients from the water column. In this situation, wait until they are moderately established. After that, use a liquid fertilizer and put it into the tank. Don’t put too much of it, though, as plants will take up nutrients from the water column and the sand.
Step 3: Place The Sand
You should now place the sand in your tank. It should be at least 2 to 3 inches above the ground of the aquarium. This will allow for the growth of the root.
Step 4: Bring Shape And Add Water
Wet the sand and scape it afterward. This should help you to get the shape you want your sand to have. After all, that is done, pour in the water very slowly into the tank and start with the planting process.
How to Plant Aquarium Plants in Pots
I am almost reaching the end. All that is left to learn is how to plant aquarium plants in pots. This section will help you to learn the A to Z about the process. Proceed to find more on this topic.
Step 1: Add Water To The Soil
You will have to add enough water to the soil of the potting plants so that they start appearing like a mud pie.
Step 2: Placing The Soil
Once you are done with add water, place the mud-pie-like soil in the pot. Press and hold so that any trapped air bubbles are eliminated.
Step 3: Create A Hole
With the help of your handy finger, make a hole that reaches the bottom of the pot. Make sure that this hole is positioned right at the center.
Step 4: Planting The Plant
Now, you have to plant your aquarium plant in the hole that you have created in the center of the pot. After that, just put in some gravel on top of your soil.
Step 5: Put The Pot In The Tank
The last step would be to carefully submerge the freshly potted plant inside the tank.
One good thing about potted plants is that you can shuffle around the placement of them. It’s not like the rest of the aquarium plant. You will be able to rearrange it according to your likings.
It is always smart to have aquarium plants in your tank as they remove the toxicity in the water and oxygenate it. You now have a full idea of how to plant different types of aquarium plants. Which ones would you put inside your tank out of the 9 that I have disc used above?