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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hi guys,
I just posted this article to my blog and wanted to add it here ...

Betta Plant Selection – What Is The Perfect Betta Plant?

Bettas in nature usually are found around plants and vegetation, and some even depend on plants for creating their bubble nests. But there are so many plants out there, how do you know which would be the perfect betta plant? Lets take a look at some of the better options for your betta that will help him thrive while adding some visual splendor to your tank.

This Betta Loves Natural Plants

1 – Plastic Betta Plant
Plastic plants have a few benefits that natural plants do not. adding a plastic plant or two means no dirt to clean up! Huge benefit there. Also, plastic plants last indefinitely, and will not create the need for extra cleaning. While they do not create oxygen for the tank like natural plants, they come in a limitless variety of colors and styles, both top water and anchored, which allows you no end in choosing the betta plant that accents your betta the best.


2 – Natural Betta Plant
Natural plants are the purists choice, and they provide needed oxygen to your betta tank. However, they do create a dirtier tank, and may cause more frequent tank maintenance. When choosing natural plants, make sure to follow the progress of the roots, which usually hang down. If they start to cramp your betta’s movements, or begin to become brown and squishy, they need to be removed.


One great natural betta plant is the water lily. This plant hovers at the top of the tank, is a lush green color, and provides excellent nesting and hiding areas. Some other good ideas for a natural betta plant are Chinese Evergreen and Philodendron.


Always check with an expert first when choosing natural plants, because some plants give off poison toxins, and could be harmful, if not deadly to your fish.


Hope this helps,
Elizabeth
 

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Well, I have an amazon sword in one of my tanks, and my betta seems to love it. He's always swimming in and out of it, and just likes to hang out around it, lol.
 

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I always thought that natural plants helped clean the tank, not vice-versa.
 

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Plants DO help clean the water for fish (water changes are still necessary), but decaying/rotting plant material pollutes the water. Plants absorb nitrates (perhaps ammonia and nitrites also?) for photosynthesis but when the plant dies it releases these chemicals (and others) into the water.

Moral of the story: plants are GREAT for fish tanks but you have to monitor for dead leaves and prune them when necessary.

My favorite plants are the Cryptocoryne lutea and Crypt. wendetii. They grow in many different light settings and don't seem to need much care. Crypt. species are prone to 'crypt melt' when moved around but once established in one location they can thrive. The Crypt. lutea species seems to be a bit smaller and probably more appropriate for smaller tanks. These Crypt. plants form dense little bushes which makes them great places for bettas to sleep!

I also like the Anubias nana plant. It can be tied to a smooth piece of driftwood with cotton thread or nylon fishing line. It grows slowly and doesn't need much light. It is a great 'foreground' plant for small tanks since it doesn't grow very tall. All of the Anubias species are low maintenance plants. Anubias barteri is a larger species with dark green, flat leaves that make great resting places for bettas and corydoras catfish.

Hi guys,

2 – Natural Betta Plant
Natural plants are the purists choice, and they provide needed oxygen to your betta tank. However, they do create a dirtier tank, and may cause more frequent tank maintenance. When choosing natural plants, make sure to follow the progress of the roots, which usually hang down. If they start to cramp your betta’s movements, or begin to become brown and squishy, they need to be removed.
I always thought that natural plants helped clean the tank, not vice-versa.
 

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Agree. Plants are very beneficial to a tank ecosystem and reduce the number of water changes you have to do. As long as you practice proper husbandry (ie pruning plants) and/or have animals that feed off of decaying plant matter (ie shrimp) you should never have a problem with plants in tank.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Well, I have an amazon sword in one of my tanks, and my betta seems to love it. He's always swimming in and out of it, and just likes to hang out around it, lol.
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I am not familiar with the amazon sword! I will have to google it and find some pics. Sounds cool, at least.

;-)
 

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I always thought that natural plants helped clean the tank, not vice-versa.
A natural "betta plant" does a great job of appealing to your fish's ancestral memory, and fish do appear to interact better with natural rather than plastic plants. But you have to remember that betta fish have been bred in captivity for at least one hundred and fifty years. Their desire for plants has long since eroded.

The best reasons for keeping plants in aquariums are for 1) aesthetics, being generally pleasing on the eyes and 2) breeding, giving bubble nest bettas a place to make their nests. Any natural organism will eventually die, which means decomposition and dirt. Natural plants do add oxygen to your tank, and make it easier for a heater to do its job, but that is where the benefit ends.

Having said that, I myself prefer natural plants; call me a purist.

Elizabeth

My favorite plants are the Cryptocoryne lutea and Crypt. wendetii. They grow in many different light settings and don't seem to need much care. Crypt. species are prone to 'crypt melt' when moved around but once established in one location they can thrive. The Crypt. lutea species seems to be a bit smaller and probably more appropriate for smaller tanks. These Crypt. plants form dense little bushes which makes them great places for bettas to sleep!

I also like the Anubias nana plant. It can be tied to a smooth piece of driftwood with cotton thread or nylon fishing line. It grows slowly and doesn't need much light. It is a great 'foreground' plant for small tanks since it doesn't grow very tall. All of the Anubias species are low maintenance plants. Anubias barteri is a larger species with dark green, flat leaves that make great resting places for bettas and corydoras catfish.
Great advice. You have me researching those names already. I called my local pet store owner and they were not familiar with the scientific names. Do these have any common names? It is perhaps that I already know of them by a layman's term.
Thanks,
Elizabeth
 

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Crypt. wendtii is known as green/brown/red (any of the 3) wendtii crypt here. There is also Wendtii crypt undulata (which is my personal favorite). Anubias is commonly known as just Anubias. I have never had any of the Anubias family... but I currently have 3 Crypt. wendtiii and I love them. They are very, very hardy plants... they do occasionally go through crypt melt if water parameters change drastically - but they always come back in a month or so.
 

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My vote is for hornwort. Some people find it unattractive but I love it!.

It can be weighted down in the substrate or left floating. I leave a large clump floating around because it shields my betta from a lot of the bright florescent lighting. He loves to swim through the stems that drape down from the top and has created a few bubble nests around them. Its a very fast growing, hardy plant (in my experience), which means its a great algae deterrent, as it can potentially out-compete algae for nutrients.

Go Hornwort!
 

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My vote is for hornwort. Some people find it unattractive but I love it!.

It can be weighted down in the substrate or left floating. I leave a large clump floating around because it shields my betta from a lot of the bright florescent lighting. He loves to swim through the stems that drape down from the top and has created a few bubble nests around them. Its a very fast growing, hardy plant (in my experience), which means its a great algae deterrent, as it can potentially out-compete algae for nutrients.

Go Hornwort!
I actually like how that looks also. And bettas do seem to like to use it for shelter.
 

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my Lulu plays with her betta bulb plants- she tears off a piece and chases it around the tank- she catches it then spits it out and hunts it like a cat with a cat toy- i just saw her do it about 15 minutes ago- this isn't something she would be able to do with a fake plant- but I don't think i've ever heard of other fish doing this
 

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I was checking out some of these plants and and i found some the looked nice(anubias barteri). But
1). I want to know what is a low maintenance plant that does not require lots of lighting.
2)Another type of plant i want to know that floats from the top of the water (like the hornwort but i dont really like how it looks) however keep in mind i want to have plants that are low maintenance.
3) if i was using river rocks (large or meduim size ones) what are my options with planting them
 

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2)Another type of plant i want to know that floats from the top of the water (like the hornwort but i dont really like how it looks) however keep in mind i want to have plants that are low maintenance.
Maybe check out duckweed? I've heard its incredibly fast growing, hardy, and good in low light conditions. I've got some on its way in the mail that I won off of aquabid. If you want I'll let you know how it is when I get it.

What size tank do you have? I might be able to make some other recommendations.
 
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