little fish fish tank aquarium

A Few Supplies That You May Need

Although none of the items on our checklist require excessively more care, these things might be useful (especially if you want to accomplish major progress in a low light environment!).

Origin Tabs: Small, nutrient-rich discs called root tabs are positioned beneath the substrate to help with nutrition levels. I highly recommend Seachem Root Tabs. These are the best products now on the market, in my opinion.

Fluid plant food: Since liquid plant food frequently causes algae episodes, it should be used much more sparingly than origin tablets. Having said that, Seachem Flourish works wonders for promoting growth in fish tank plants that do not root into the substrate.

Special Considerations

High plants make excellent historical plants, such as mature Java ferns or African water ferns. As midground plants, center elevation plants like Cryptocoryne or Anubias balance out the sides of the scene.

Beautiful history plants include tall plants like fully grown Java ferns or African water ferns. Midground plants in the scene’s center, such as Cryptocoryne or Anubias, balance out the scene’s edges.

In a storage tank with less lighting, ease up on the fertilization! The majority of the plants listed below are not the quickest cultivators, with a few exceptions like Hornwort. When adding too much in the way of vitamins and minerals, if your plants can’t absorb it all, it might lead to eruptive algae growth.

It is vital to conduct numerous study investigations on the intricate treatment requirements of your plants. pH is crucial for proper plant health and welfare; some alkaline water (pH 7+) is necessary for plants like Marimo Moss spheres to thrive. Others, like Java Fern, favor environments with even higher pH levels (pH listed below 7).

30 Best Low Light Aquarium Plants for Beginners

Below are a couple of types of low-light fish tank plants that we suggest for novices.

1. Java Moss (Vesicularia dubyana)

Java moss is a very common moss that typically grows on rocks and trees in regions with unusual environments. Since it has no beginnings, it is possible that the moss can drift through the water to find the nutrients it needs.

It will undoubtedly also attach to the substratum or fish tank design. Small, oblong-shaped falling leaves that cover ugly fish tank equipment like filters help identify java moss.

The moss is perfect for design because it can easily adhere to any kind of porous surface.

Feel in one’s bones that it can leave hands if not kept cleanly brushed; if you choose something cleaner, other water moss kinds like Christmas Moss might better suit your needs.

Feel in one’s bones that it can leave hands if not kept cleanly brushed; other water moss species, such as Christmas moss, may better suit your needs if you desire something more hygienic.

Low, however additional light can be provided to encourage development. Fair degree needed. Overgrowth will surely occur in areas of excessive light.

Degree of treatment: Beginner.

Compatibility: Excellent. It provides excellent protection for eggs, insects, small fish, and young animals. It does not root well in crushed stone and prefers to be attached to rocks and other solid surfaces.

2. Environment-friendly Hygro (Hygrophila polysperma)

The green hygro is a fast-growing stem plant with long fallen leaves that, depending on the lighting, can range in color from green to brown to red. Choose a top-notch grown fish tank substrate because this plant prefers a sizable substratum to guarantee its origins. Although the green hygro is a reputable plant, when it is specifically delighted with a strategy, it can spiral out of hand.

Low browning will undoubtedly accompany overlighting, therefore a fair degree is required. Rapid growth will surely occur in extremely low light as well.

Degree of treatment: Beginner-Intermediate.

Compatibility: Good, but must frequently be pruned to prevent it from taking over. Please avoid using containers with fish because they could overfeed on the plant and soon consume it.

3. Sundown Hygro (Hygrophila polysperma ‘Rosanervig’)

The pigmentation of the leaves that have fallen makes the dusk hygro distinct from the environmentally friendly hygro. Additionally, the water needs to contain the right amounts of iron in order to maintain the vibrant red hues of its leaves.

Green and red ranges are excellent indicator plants in a fish tank with low lighting. They lose their fallen leaves, a warning indication of concern, when other issues or nutrient levels arise.

Light degree called for: Low-moderate light.

Degree of treatment: Beginner-Intermediate.

Compatibility: Good, yet have to be trimmed to prevent taking control of the container.

4. Rotala Rotundifolia

The complete rotundfolia is a popular fish tank plant renowned for its pink color and thin, rounded leaves that, when allowed to spread to the water’s surface, will definitely cascade downhill in a bushy growth pattern.

Another quickly growing plant that requires the right lighting to achieve outstanding pigmentation is this one. It needs to be regularly pruned to prevent overgrowth in addition, just like hygros. Although rotalas usually don’t grow larger than 6 inches, they will surely keep growing up and down and climbing the sides of the fish tank.

It’s important to note that while Rotala Rotundifolia would surely survive and thrive in a fish tank with low lighting, greater lighting only causes it to display its pink color.

Light degree called for: Moderate. Yellow-green leaves will undoubtedly fall under too-low lighting conditions. As long as enough trace elements are provided, it can thrive in low light conditions.

Degree of treatment: Beginner-Intermediate.

Compatibility: Good, yet have to be trimmed to avoid respected development.

5. Rotala Indica

India has even larger rounded leaves that frequently stay green in the absence of light, although the plant’s stem only has a crimson hue. Although both kinds can be cultivated independently or on a small plot, substantial trimming is unavoidably required.

Fair degree needed: Low.

Degree of treatment: Beginner-Intermediate.

Compatibility: Good, but must be pruned to prevent respectable development. As well as requiring far less light than Rotala rotundifolia.

6. Hornwort (Ceratophyllum demersum)

Hornwort will surely attach itself to objects in the fish tank or may drift freely in the water thanks to its unique growth pattern, which gives the plant the nickname of “Coontail.”

Fair degree needed: Low-moderate.

Degree of treatment: Beginner.

Compatibility: Excellent.

7. Java Fern (Microsorum pteropus)

The useful, ideal plant known as the java brush prefers fish tanks with low light levels. The java brush is a passionate plant that doesn’t require special lighting but also shouldn’t be exposed to very harsh lights.

Fair degree needed: Moderate to Low lights.

Degree of treatment: Beginner.

Compatibility: Excellent.

8. Parrots Feather (Myriophyllum aquaticum)

The parrot’s plume draws notice among marine plants due to its rich, eco-friendly growth and distinctive structure. For its use as color and concealment for aquatic animals, parrot’s plume is well-known. This plant, like hornwort, frequently drifts in the water but can be supported by a shallow substratum.

Fair degree needed: By placing the fish tank close to a home window and employing low lights inside the tank, you can provide a moderate to high level of lighting.

Degree of treatment: Beginner.

Compatibility: Excellent, specifically with fish, guppies, and also minnows.

9. Moneywort (Bocapa monnieri)

The moneywort, also known by other names, is a sneaky plant that is frequently used to shade the fish tank. Moneywort shoots are frequently planted close to one another in order to compare them to various other plants.

Fair degree needed: Moderate.

Degree of treatment: Beginner.

Compatibility: Excellent; thrives in most fish tank environments.

10. Brazilian Pennywort (Hydrocotyle leucocephala)

Brazilian pennywort produces light-colored, bean-shaped, and branching leaves that have stalks that resemble vines. This plant, like many others, can be kept as a rooted plant or as a drifting plant. The pennywort is a plant that grows quickly and requires frequent trimming, but it is worth the effort because it is an attractive plant that can be used anyplace in the fish tank.

Fair degree needed: Any, however, reduced suffices to prevent overgrowth.

Degree of treatment: Beginner.

Compatibility: Given that it can be a somewhat delicate plant, this shouldn’t include any tanks for fish or cichlids.

11. Crypt Wendtii

The varied plant species crypt wendtii can produce brownish, crimson, or green-colored fallen leaves in a variety of shapes and sizes. The crypt wendtii is a popular plant due to its convenience and its ability to be used as a centerpiece within the fish tank. Typically, the leaves are long with swinging sides, and they may grow to sizes up to 18″.

Light degree called for: Thrives in any type of illumination problems.

Degree of treatment: Intermediate. Extremely conscious transforming problems within the fish tank.

Compatibility: Good yet shouldn’t be kept in storage tanks with cichlids that could destroy the leaves.

12. Crypt Balansae

The crypt balansae’s fallen leaves are long and thin, with distinctive shaken upsides. Water animals can easily hide out in the thick globs that the plant frequently forms.

Despite being a somewhat sluggish cultivator, this plant is deserving of attention for its unique structure and appearance. C. A fantastic mid- to late-historical plant is balansae.

Light degree called for: Moderate-High light.

Degree of treatment: Intermediate. Very conscious transforming problems within the fish tank.

Compatibility: The presence of containers with cichlids, which might destroy the fallen leaves, is good but not necessary.

13. Crypt Spiralis

The fallen leaves of circles are a little thicker than the various other Crypts, and also while it expands gradually, it will certainly still tend to grow shoots throughout the fish tank. Another Crypt category, the crypt spiralis, shows lengthy slim fallen leaves, which create looseened spirals as they mature to 24″ in size.

Fair degree needed: Moderate.

Degree of treatment: Beginner-Intermediate. Extremely conscious altering problems within the fish tank.

Compatibility: Good but shouldn’t be kept in tanks containing cichlids since they might eat the leaves that have fallen.

14. Guppy Grass (Najas guadalupensis)

Due to its effectiveness as a “baby chamber” plant for young guppies, Guppy Yard earned its name. It has thin, globular green leaves that have fallen to the ground. This plant frequently has a tendency to float in the storage tank and will surely continue to grow.

Guppy Grass has great versatility, making it difficult to defeat. The plant will certainly thrive in any type of fish tank, whether you want to root it, let it drift, use low light, or use high!

Fair degree needed: Any; reduced suffices.

Degree of treatment: Beginner.

Compatibility: Fantastic, especially for baby guppies!

15. Anubias Barteri

Anubias barteri has large, curved-side, arrowhead- or heart-shaped leaves that are intensely green in the shade.

This plant is still just approximately 5″ in size and around 6″ in elevation. It grows slowly and has thick, complex leaves that are bitter to the majority of fish and invertebrates that eat plants.

The wide-spread fallen leaves frequently encourage the growth of algae. The best way to keep these stylish plants will surely be to pair them with fish and invertebrates that consume algae.

Light degree called for: Low-moderate light.

Degree of treatment: Beginner.

Compatibility: Excellent; tenacious enough to put up with one of the fish tank residents who loves plants the most.

16. Anubias Nana

The smaller-framed relative of A is Anubias Nana. barteri, even though both varieties have enormous leaves that have fallen that are roughly the size of the plant. A little, bushy, slowly dispersing plant known as Nana attaches to driftwood or other items in the fish tank. Similar to barteri, it has leaves with an arrowhead pattern and is still a little plant.

Anubias species are wonderful additions to fish tanks with fish that consume plants. Fish and invertebrates will trouble a grown Anubias plant; the large, rubbery falling leaves are complicated and also slightly bitter.

Fair degree needed: Low light.

Degree of treatment: Beginner.

Compatibility: Excellent; tenacious enough to put up with one of the fish tank residents who loves plants the most.

17. Pelia (Monosolenium tenerum)

Pelia and moss share some visual similarities. It is a unique plant that differs from many mosses in that it offers a variety of goals. Pelia, in contrast to moss, does not attach to supports and spreads out swiftly in dense floor coverings.

Fair degree needed: Low-Moderate light.

Degree of treatment: Beginner-Intermediate.

Compatibility: Moderate. Not need to be in fish tanks with aggressive or knowledgeable fish, which might easily hurt the fragile Pelia.

18. Waterwheel Plant (Aldrovanda vesiculosa)

One of the most distinctive maritime plants mentioned so far is the waterwheel. As a result of the tiny meat-eating catches at the end of each twirl (or “talked”) of the plant, it has been likened to a marine Venus flytrap. The waterwheel consumes aquatic pests and frequently floats freely outside of the water to “hunt” for its prey.

Fair degree called for: Moderate to Full.

Degree of treatment: Intermediate-Advanced.

Compatibility: This plant requires a diet high in meat, which should include daphnia, bugs, snails, tadpoles, insect wigglers, etc. Prior to putting the plant in a fish tank, this needs to be considered.

19. Bacopa (Bacopa caroliniana)

The Bacopa is another common water plant that is well recognized for its long, oppositely expanding leaves that form a “ladder” up each stalk. The Bacopa ranges in color from a brilliant greenish-yellow to a brownish tone, and it needs to be given a suitable substrate to grow on. It is a slowly growing plant that can reach an elevation of 12 inches.

Fair degree needed: Low-Moderate.

Degree of treatment: Beginner.

Compatibility: Excellent.

20. American Waterweed (Elodea canadensis)

Elodea is a rapidly growing, long-stemmed plant that adapts well to drifting or rooting in the substrate and provides little fish with enough cover.

Typically in fish ponds and lakes in North America, the Elodea can be spotted growing. It is a basic food for many aquatic animals kept as pets, including ducks, turtles, beavers, etc.

Before adding this plant to a fish tank, local restrictions must be checked as it is regarded as an intrusive variety in some states.

Vegan fish like Elodea for its soft fallen leaves and also fast development.

Light degree called for: Low light.

Degree of treatment: Beginner.

Compatibility: Elodea is good, however a lot of fish and marine animals chose it as a major food source. Unless the plant is being supplied as food, storage tanks with fish that consume soft plants must not be present!

21. Micro Crypt (Cryptocoryne petchii)

The micro vault is a slowly growing plant with tiny, lengthy fallen leaves, including shaken upsides, just like the crypts described above. The micro is the smallest of the crypt series, measuring only a few inches in height as a whole.

Several other dwarf crypts, including C. Petechiae is found in dubious, fast-moving streams in Sri Lanka. Although slowly spreading, it is also rather durable and low-demanding.

Numerous crypts are available in pet stores as light bulbs, allowing you to quickly and effectively create a strong root system for your new plants.

Fair degree needed: Low light.

Degree of treatment: Beginner.

Compatibility: Although beneficial, cichlid plants shouldn’t be around because they might eat the fallen leaves.

22. Red Ludwigia (Ludwigia repens)

It is a stem plant that grows quickly and requires regular trimming. Large groups of shoots are frequently grown together.

Red Ludwigia is native to North America and can tolerate water temperatures as low as 65 degrees, although she prefers temperatures between 75 and 80 degrees. When fully grown, it develops a rose hue on the underside of its dropped leaves and offers sporadic feedings.

Fair degree called for: Moderate; also, reduced light will certainly trigger loss of fallen leaves and lessen the shade.

Degree of treatment: Beginner.

Compatibility: Excellent.

23. Marimo Ball

The Marimo is a kind of circular algae that expands radially, frequently taking on a rounded appearance, and is frequently mistaken for moss. These plants in fish tanks with low lighting develop gradually. However, they are easy to care for and live a long time. They are widely used as decoration and are liked for their distinctive appearance.

They might eventually squish out in low-light fish aquariums without powerheads or solid filtration. These relatively delicate aquatic plants can be destroyed by overfertilization.

Fair degree needed: Low light to stay clear of browning.

Degree of treatment: Beginner.

Compatibility: Excellent. However, watch the mario round to make sure the fish aren’t consuming it too much and preventing it from developing. A common choice for betta containers shouldn’t be used for fish containers.

24. African Water Fern (Bolbitis heudelotii)

African water brushes have sturdy, long-stemmed plants with delicate, dark-green falling leaves. African water brushes grow very slowly but can reach a mature size of 16 to 18 inches. They usually anchor themselves to rocks, bark, or other surfaces.

Although African Water Ferns are fantastic low-light plants, they occasionally require additional feeding and CO2 for the optimal growth.

Fair degree needed: Low-Moderate.

Degree of treatment: Beginner.

Compatibility: Excellent, specifically when coupled with algae-eating fish or shrimp.

25. Coffee fallen leave anubias (Anubias barteri v. ‘coffeefolia’)

The coffee fallen leaf anubias is recognized by its oval, rippling leaves that spread out from the plant, spreading wide rather than high. The freshly fallen leaves start out as a mocha brown before turning the distinctive dark green that Anubias are known for.

Coffee fallen leave anubias, like other varieties, frequently expand gradually and shouldn’t be grown into the substratum because doing so usually results in the plant’s death.

All Anubias species prefer to be fastened to rocks, logs, or even filter piping! The juvenile Coffee Leaf Anubias can be tied safely with just an elastic band; by the time the band rots, the plant will have matured.

Fair degree needed: Low light.

Degree of treatment: Beginner.

Compatibility: Excellent, specifically when coupled with algae-eating fish.

26. Duckweed

Lemnaceae, or duckweed, is a contentious genus. Because it rests directly at the water’s surface to absorb light, it performs amazingly well as a fish tank plant in low light.

Some aquarists support duckweed with submerged plastic plants or light-tolerant plants that require little to no light, such as Java Fern or Java Moss. The duckweed grows color, a lovely organic appearance, and serves as an organic filter. Just keep in mind that if you decide to remove it, you must be extremely thorough to prevent it from regrowing from even a single remaining plant!

Fair degree called for: Low.

Degree of treatment: Very Easy.

Compatibility: Great vitamins and mineral sponge and algae control plant; beware of its tendency to outgrow control!

27. Banana Plant (Nymphoides Aquatica)

The banana plants are not as hardy as some of the other plants below since they like modest lighting. Due to their banana-shaped origin appendages, they thrive in fish tanks with low lighting. These unique bulbs store extra nutrition for times of famine. In order to receive the best light exposure, the plant will certainly contact to create a fallen leaf that resembles a lilypad.

If kept in a fish tank with low lighting, the banana plant will quickly send up a variety of lily pad leaves, however greater lights will surely encourage it to generate even more undersea flora with attractive purple-red hue.

Fair degree called for: Low-Moderate.

Degree of treatment: Easy.

Compatibility: Suitable for all fish tanks; beware of snails as they like to take in the fleshy bulbs, eliminating the plant.

28. Water Wisteria (Hygrophila Difformis)

Although Water Wisteria will likely grow well in a low-light aquarium, be aware that the type of growth it produces depends on the lighting. It uses a wide leaf variety to maximize direct light exposure until it is moved into a bright light environment, at which point it transforms into a punishing, practically downy leafed plant that looks altogether different sorts!

Water Wisteria is much more required in nourishment, favoring extra CO2 and fertilizing to accomplish ideal development.

Fair degree called for: Low-High.

Degree of treatment: Intermediate.

Compatibility: Great as well as handles various looks based upon light and also nutrient degrees.


Lemon Bacopa is a slow-growing stem plant that like to be planted in small groups where it will certainly work its way to the surface and produce a tiny purple blossom. The name comes from the lemony scent of the crushed fallen leaves. One of the most sensitive low-light fish tank plants available, Lemon Bacopa is also one of the easiest to care for and doesn’t require much in the way of additional lighting or feeding.

It is simple to spread Lemon Bacopa; just take a cutting and place it directly into the crushed stones. The new branch will certainly develop roots within a couple of days, making its method right into the substrate as a brand-new plant.

Fair degree called for: Low-Moderate.

Degree of treatment: Easy.

Compatibility: Fits well in many containers; has an enjoyable scent when squashed!

30. Peacock Moss

Taxophyllum species “Peacock” is a relative’s first introduction to the amazing world of water mosses. Peacock moss is a hardy yet attractive substitute for Java moss as a low light fish tank plant. It has a slightly green coloring and a nice growth pattern similar to a small evergreen.

While equally sturdy, it expands gradually, suggesting it takes much less upkeep to maintain looking great.

Peacock moss appreciates periodic fertilization and CO2 if kept in a fish tank with mature fish. Peacock moss prefers temperatures of no more than 75 degrees and is a cooler water decreased light plant.

Fair degree needed: Low.

Degree of treatment: Intermediate.

Compatibility: Tidy contrasted to Java Moss; reduced light is necessary to this shade-dwelling water moss.

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