African Water Fern - Planted Tank Mates

African Water Fern

16” | Background | Easy

Co2: No | Light: Low

Column Feeder

Bolbitis heudelotii

Characteristics:

Max Size: 16″

Care Level: Easy

Nutrient Source: Column Feeder

Composition: Background

Parameters

Co2: None

Light Level: Low

Tank Mates

Great for nano community fish like tetras, rasboras, danios, mollies, endlers, otocinclus, corydoras, dwarf gouramis.  Avoid larger mid dwellers that may pick on its delicate leaves like cichlids and goldfish.

Notes

Also known as Congo Fern or Bolbitis Narrow Leaf Fern is a column feeding plant.  It has a narrow leaves that branch off on alternating sides of the stem.  Similar to Java Fern, do not bury it deep into the soil as the rhizome can rot.  Lightly bury, weigh it down, or tie it to hardscapes to allow it to grow.  It’s a very slow growing plant in low light settings, but can propagate fast with CO2 and moderate lighting, but look out for algae on the leaves.

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African Water Fern removeWater Sprite removeProserpinaca palustris (Mermaid Weed) removeVallisneria removeHydrocotyle Japan removeMicro Sword remove
NameAfrican Water Fern removeWater Sprite removeProserpinaca palustris (Mermaid Weed) removeVallisneria removeHydrocotyle Japan removeMicro Sword remove
Imageafrican water fern planted tankwater sprite planted tankmermaid weed planted tankvallisneria planted tankhydrocotyle japan planted tankMicro Sword (Lilaeopsis brasiliensis)
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Description

16” | Background | Easy

Co2: No | Light: Low

Column Feeder

12” | Background | Easy

Co2: No | Light: Low

Column Feeder

16” | Background | Medium

Co2: Medium | Light: High

Root Feeder

20”+| Background | Easy

Co2: None | Light: Low

Root Feeder

5” | Foreground | Medium

Co2: Medium | Light: Low

Root Feeder

3” | Carpet | Easy

Co2: No | Light: Medium

Root Feeder

Content

Bolbitis heudelotii

Characteristics:

Max Size: 16"

Care Level: Easy

Nutrient Source: Column Feeder

Composition: Background

Parameters

Co2: None

Light Level: Low

Tank Mates

Great for nano community fish like tetras, rasboras, danios, mollies, endlers, otocinclus, corydoras, dwarf gouramis.  Avoid larger mid dwellers that may pick on its delicate leaves like cichlids and goldfish.

Notes

Also known as Congo Fern or Bolbitis Narrow Leaf Fern is a column feeding plant.  It has a narrow leaves that branch off on alternating sides of the stem.  Similar to Java Fern, do not bury it deep into the soil as the rhizome can rot.  Lightly bury, weigh it down, or tie it to hardscapes to allow it to grow.  It's a very slow growing plant in low light settings, but can propagate fast with CO2 and moderate lighting, but look out for algae on the leaves.

Ceratopteris Thalictroides

Characteristics:

Max Size: 12"

Care Level: Easy

Nutrient Source: Column Feeder

Composition: Background

Parameters

Co2: None

Light Level: Low

Tank Mates

Great for nano community fish like tetras, rasboras, danios, mollies, endlers, otocinclus, corydoras, dwarf gouramis.  Popular for guppy and shrimp tanks as they provide shelter for baby shrimp and fry.  Avoid larger mid dwellers that may pick on its delicate leaves like cichlids and goldfish.

Notes

Water Sprite is a versatile plant that can be placed in the background or trimmed to keep low in the midground of your aquarium.   Also known as Indian Water Fern, it's a column feeding plant that can be planted in the soil or left floating in the water.  It's a fast growing plant under medium to high lighting but be cautious of algae growth on its leaves.

Proserpinaca palustris

Characteristics:

Max Size: 16″

Care Level: Medium

Nutrient Source: Root Feeder + Water Column

Composition: Background

Parameters

Co2: Medium

Light Level: High

Tank Mates

Great for community fish, shrimp and snails

Notes

This greenish to orange-red plant has a wide canopy and distinguished saw-tooth edges.  It's a relatively hardy plant, but with strong lighting and CO2 it can start to show more red colors.

Read more about how to maintain Red Aquarium Plants See the diagrams on how you can setup CO2 for your aquarium

Vallisneria

Characteristics:

Max Size: 20″+

Care Level: Easy

Nutrient Source: Root Feeder

Composition: Background

Parameters

Co2: Not Required, but grows faster with

Light Level: Medium

Tank Mates

Vallisneria is a popular backdrop for middle to top dwelling fish like tetras, gouramis and angelfish.

Notes

This is a very easy background plant.  It does not require CO2 and will thrive with good subtrate and water column.

https://plantedtankmates.com/aquarium-plants-for-beginners/

Hydrocotyle tripartita

Characteristics:

Max Size: 5"

Care Level: Medium

Nutrient Source: Root Feeder

Composition: Foreground

Parameters

Co2: Low - Medium

Light Level: Low

Tank Mates

Low foreground plants are great for invertebrates and bottom feeders to graze and hide.

Notes

Hydrocotle Japan make great foreground and midground plants.  The clover-like appearance of this plant creates a unique carpet experience.  It’s very hardy, undemanding and can quickly cover your foreground.  High lighting will help this plant grow low and spread.  Insufficient lighting will have the clovers reaching for the sky.  CO2 again will help with density and compactness.

Compare carpet plant options and select the next one for your planted tank See the diagrams on how you can setup CO2 for your aquarium

Lilaeopsis brasiliensis

Characteristics:

Max Size: 3"

Care Level: Easy

Nutrient Source: Root Feeder

Composition: Carpet and Foreground

Parameters

Co2: Optional

Light Level: Medium to High

Tank Mates

Great carpet plant.  Creates a lush looking lawn.  Closely resembles grass

Notes

Microsword is one of the easiest carpet plants for beginners.  They’re relatively hardy and look like real lawn grass.  Plant clusters about 1.5” - 2” apart and allow them to infill.  They have runners that spread over the surface and shoot roots down into the substrate.  When planting, angle into the substrate at a diagonal to minimize uplifting.

Compare carpet plant options and select the next one for your planted tank See the diagrams on how you can setup CO2 for your aquarium
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