2 Great Live Plants for a Home Aquarium: A Guide to Care and Maintenance

Adding live plants to your home aquarium enhances its aesthetic appeal and promotes a healthy environment for your aquatic inhabitants. Aquarium plants offer numerous benefits, such as oxygenation, water filtration, and hiding spots for fish. In this article, we will explore some of the best plants for a home aquarium, along with essential care tips to ensure their successful growth. Whether you’re a seasoned aquarist or a beginner, these plants will thrive with proper care, adding a touch of natural beauty to your underwater world.

Java Fern (Microsorum pteropus)

Java Fern is an excellent choice for both beginners and experienced aquarium enthusiasts. Its hardy nature and low light requirements make it easy to maintain. This plant features beautiful, broad, and dark green leaves, providing an ideal hiding spot for fish. It can be attached to rocks, driftwood, or left to float freely in the water. Avoid burying the rhizome, as it may cause rot. Java Fern prefers slightly acidic to neutral water conditions and benefits from regular fertilization.

Care Tips

Lighting: Java Fern thrives in low to moderate lighting conditions. Avoid intense lighting, as it may cause algae growth.

Water Parameters: Maintain a temperature range of 68-82°F and a pH level of 6.0-7.5.

Fertilization: Although Java Fern can absorb nutrients from the water column, occasional supplementation with liquid or root fertilizers is beneficial.

Amazon Sword (Echinodorus sp.)

The Amazon Sword is a popular and visually striking aquarium plant known for its long, sword-shaped leaves. It serves as an excellent background or centerpiece plant, creating a lush and vibrant underwater landscape. This plant requires moderate to high lighting and nutrient-rich substrate for optimal growth. The Amazon Sword is known to absorb excess nutrients, helping to combat algae growth in the aquarium.

Care Tips

Lighting: Provide moderate to high-intensity lighting for the Amazon Sword to thrive. Consider using full-spectrum LED lights or fluorescent tubes.

Water Parameters: Maintain a temperature range of 72-82°F and a slightly acidic to neutral pH level of 6.5-7.5.

Substrate and Fertilization: Use a nutrient-rich substrate to supply essential nutrients. Regularly fertilize with root tabs or liquid fertilizers to ensure healthy growth.


Including live plants in your home aquarium not only enhances its visual appeal but also creates a healthier and more natural environment for your fish. Java Fern and Amazon Sword are two excellent choices for aquarium plants, offering beauty, functionality, and ease of care. By following the provided care tips and maintaining suitable water parameters, you can enjoy the benefits of a thriving aquatic plant ecosystem. Remember to regularly monitor and adjust the conditions to meet the specific needs of your aquarium plants.

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