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Discussion Starter #1
I'm setting up a 7.5 gallon planted aquarium and wondered if anyone has experience with Helanthium 'Vesuvius' (sometimes called Echinodorus 'Vesuvius'). I'd love to use it as a background plant, but I'm worried that the leaves might be too pointy. Could they damage a betta's fins?

If you don't have direct experience with this plant, I'm wondering if anyone has tips on figuring which plants could be unsafe. I like the look of Rotala arcuata but that one seems like a potential disaster.
 

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As far as I know, there aren't any live plants that will damage a betta's fins! They may look "sharp" but they're still quite flexible and soft. If you're going to worry about anything, rocks & driftwood would be the more likely culprits but I've only rarely heard of them causing tears.

The bigger concern is making sure the plants can grow well in the conditions that bettas prefer, and unfortunately I am not familiar enough with the plants you've asked about to give advice there.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
That's good to know!

All of the plants I'm considering have water parameters consistent with what a betta would need except, perhaps, for the mosses which tend to do better at lower temperatures. I'm thinking of attaching them to parts of the hardscape that look a bit rough. By the time I'm finally ready to add the betta I should have a pretty good idea of how they're doing.
 

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It's a sword it'll be fine. :). Can't imagine any live aquarium plant would harm a betta.

I hear you re: mosses! I learned the hard way that they definitely need cooler temps. I believe mosses native to warm waters like Java Moss would be fine - others on here have success with it so I'll probably try it.



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Discussion Starter #5
My favorite is Fissidens fontanus, and it definitely prefers cooler temperatures but I like it so much I'll probably cave in and give it a try, possibly with a dry start.

I've seen posts in various forums that suggest hornwort can harm betta fins, so I've been a little worried about pointy leaved plants in general, but perhaps there's something unique to hornwort that causes trouble?
 

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Keep in mind that Moss species is from North America and likes a lot of light. If it survives in a tropical tank pls let me know I'll buy some!

With respect to what you've found on internet forums regarding Hornwort, an old adage comes to mind:

"Don't believe anything you've heard or read, and only half of what you see". .

(and yes that applies to this forum as well, although there are fish keepers around here with 50 years experience in keeping Betta).

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I found Vesuvius Swords to be extremely fragile re: growing conditions. They did "okay" but I eventually pulled them. They had both substrate and water column ferts. Not all Swords are created equal. ;-) Some are bomb proof but many are not. There were several species of Swords thriving in the same tank.
 

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I love them and you will, too. Even plants with which I am not successful get a second...or third...chance. Usually I buy from a different seller because sucess often has to do, IME, with the conditions in which plants are grown. So I will try Vesuvius again.
 
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