View Full Version : Suggested beginner plants

03-26-2017, 05:02 PM
I didn't see a general plant subforum so please move this if needed. I have a lot more reading to do concerning plants.

I am interested in starting some plants from bulbs, rhyzomes or cuttings. I am going to start a 5.5G plant nursery and then transplant them to the main aquarium. I have flexibility in locating the main aquarium for adequate natural lighting. Local selection of bulbs is limited so I can order online. Eventually I would not mind a CO2 system but for now I would like to start with plants that don't require it to thrive.

03-26-2017, 06:16 PM
Java fern! It's a nice easy low light plant that you don't even need to plant, simply tie them with black thread to a porous surface and let them grow. They still propagate by growing plantlet on old mature leaves and also at the main rhizome. Use cotton thread if you want it to disintegrate after the plant takes hold to something. Use polyester thread if you want the thread to hold it and the plant will grow to cover the thread.

I don't have much experience with bulb plants, but they do well with a bit of root fertilizer for me.

Then there's anubias, which I think you're already considering, it's a beautiful plant with long-lasting leaves, but is a slow-grower, slower than java fern. It also shouldn't have too much light to prevent algae from growing on the leaves. It grows the same way as JF, with a rhizome that can attach to a porous suface. Just be sure not to bury the rhizome of any plant, they need to have access to the water column and flow.

Other easy plants, easy to obtain, that need to be planted include some cryptocoryne plants, amazon sword plant, wisteria, hygros.

03-26-2017, 07:01 PM
Thanks for your help Kat, I will look those up and get some ordered. I have even toyed with the idea of throwing a small plastic pond in the back yard. I could really jump start some true tropical plants, and add a few local temperate zone plants. We have a warm/hot season that lasts about 4 1/2 months. That might be enough time to get a good start with the strong sunlight. I bought some guppies to test my starter aquarium a couple days ago. Now I already have about 25 guppies so they need a place to live. Most of them will be "mutts" no doubt. When I was a child my neighbor used to do that every summer. Then grab some of the more attractive ones for breeding use in the aquariums at the end of the season. They grew common aquatic plants as well but I have no idea what plants.

03-26-2017, 08:04 PM
Sounds cool. My good "fish-friend" lol, keeps white cloud minnows. He adds them to his plastic pond in the summer, they breed to enormous numbers in the pond, and he sells the babies come fall. He keeps a few in his tanks indoors over the winter. He literally fishes/nets out EVERY fish when the water starts to cool for the season. Idk how he has that patience, but he's incredibly maticulous.

Sorry, off topic a bit....
I would order the java fern to start and/or wait for more input. You can't go wrong with java fern. There are different variations of JF like broadleaf, narrowleaf, needleleaf, trident, windelov and others. Here's a little link for java fern care


Do you already have some anubias?

Some of your bulb plants might get pretty large too and take up space, depending on which types you have?

03-26-2017, 09:46 PM
I don't have any anubias. Just the aponogeton, water onion and water lilly species I mentioned in the other thread. The bulbs I bought yesterday are already popping roots so I may get another pack of those. Just picked up my new aquarium and it is a 60G. I am going to place it where it catches some natural light. If that is an algae nightmare I'll drain it down in a few months and learn my lesson. I think I will fight plant growing less in the beginning if I have some natural light. My new 60G just has some LED tights. I will probably build a hood and research what sort of lights I need to support plants.

I will order some of the ferns you suggest.

Law Dog
03-27-2017, 12:28 AM
I planted some Vals and Crypts in my boys 5gal Spec V tanks and they're growing like made, especially the Vals. In just 5 days 1 of the Vals had 3 new runners coming off of it.