7 Benefits Of Live Plants In An Aquarium

Today I like to discuss 7 benefits of live plants in an aquarium because plants are so much more than just green bushes, leaves, and decoration.

For a thriving healthy aquarium, live plants are extremely important and beneficial to have. Even for beginners, it is recommended to use live plants.

Not to mention how breathtaking it can be to have an aquarium filled with beautiful colorful real live plants, instead of plastic. Let’s go to step 1 of 7 Benefits Of Live Plants In An Aquarium.

1. Live Plants Help Reduce Algae in an Aquarium

An aquarium that is overgrown with algae can be very frustrating and irritating. And a great way to fight back against algae is by using live plants.

There are of course algae eaters but sometimes even they will not be able to keep up with the algae growth.

Because live plants and algae need the same nutrients as food. Live plants can be really helpful in reducing algae in an aquarium. But this only works for fast-growing live plants, such as the Water Wisteria, or Egeria Densa. The roots will absorb all the nutrients leaving nothing left for algae.

Live plants that grow slower, for example, Anubias struggle to starve out overgrown algae. And even though slower growing plants cannot compete fully with algae they are still a great addition in reducing algae.

This will save a lot of time in the long run with cleaning an aquarium. But it should not mean that algae growth can be ignored. Keep cleaning the glass and remove anything visible there is inside the aquarium.

Also, keep in mind that live plants and algae are sensitive to too much light. Therefore do not keep the aquarium lights on for longer than 12 hours with full-grown live plants.

If the live plants are still small keep the lights on for around 4-6 hours and slowly add more hours as the live plant grows. This is because when they are small they do not need so much light yet.

Let’s go to step 2 of 7 Benefits Of Live Plants In An Aquarium.

Algae Covered Aquarium
Aquarium Covered in Algae

2. Live Plants Create an Extra Filtration

Every aquarium requires a good filtration set up to maintain a healthy environment and adding live plants will give an extra filtration that is more natural.

Live plants have the ability to remove all the unnecessary products through their leaves and roots. And use all these unnecessary products as fertilizer. Like decaying matter, carbon dioxide, ammonia, nitrites, nitrates, heavy metals, and fish waste from the water. Which is pretty awesome.

Now you might be thinking then why do I need a filtration system if I can just use live plants? Well true in a way a live plant-only aquarium is possible.

But if you are new to the hobby I suggest not doing a live plant-only aquarium. Because a live plant-only aquarium requires green thumbs and knowledge about live plants, just like a garden outside. Let’s go to step 3 of 7 Benefits Of Live Plants In An Aquarium.

3. Live Plants Helps With Production of Oxygen

Another great benefit of using live plants in an aquarium is because they produce oxygen. And even though there are devices that increase oxygen. A lot of the time there will not be enough oxygen for fish to breathe.

Because live plants use photosynthesis to produce the food they need. Oxygen is released into the water during this process. And carbon dioxide is reduced.

This is great because carbon dioxide is toxic to fish but gives live plants what they need to thrive.

Let’s go to step 4 of 7 Benefits Of Live Plants In An Aquarium.

4. Live Plants Create a More Natural Habitat

Fish will thrive with live plants inside an aquarium, and not only because of the reasons I listed above. But also by creating a nice natural habitat for them. In the wild fish can hide and thrive among live plants but in an empty box, there is nothing to thrive for.

By recreating a natural habitat your fish will feel straight at home and they will also show a more normal behavioral pattern. Fish will be able to hide from other fish and create their own little spots to hide just like in the wild. With live plants in an aquarium, you provide protection.

Which will make fish a lot less stressful when they are thriving. Because when fish get stressed they can get sick and even worse die.

Not only will it be more pleasing for the fish but it can also be fun to design and re-create an entire underworld. Live plants can create such a life-like underwater world as they come in many different colors. Which can be breathtaking. Let’s go to step 5 of 7 Benefits Of Live Plants In An Aquarium.

7 Benefits Of Live Plants In An Aquarium
Dutch Style Planted Aquarium

5. Live Plants Helps With Keeping the Substrate in Place

Just like the plants and tree’s in the wild have a very strong root system. Life plants in an aquarium also have a very strong root system. The substrate becomes more stable and fish are less likely to kick the substrate all over the place as they dig, hide, and live their lives.

Keeping the substrate in place keeps the water more clear as well, instead of looking like an underwater sandstorm. In the wild rivers and oceans have natural streaming, inside an aquarium the filter outflow will create a flow and that can disturb the substrate without live plants. Especially sand substrate. Let’s go to step 6 of 7 Benefits Of Live Plants In An Aquarium.

6. Live Plants are Another Food Source

Live plants are a more natural food source that helps with digestion. And because some fish are omnivorous they require live plants every now and then to snack on. Now no need to panic that fish will eat all your beautiful plants.

Because when fish are fed regularly on a normal basis as always. They will not attack the plants like crazy. And even if you forget to feed your fish for a certain amount of time. A healthy live plant will grow back. Let’s go to step 7 of 7 Benefits Of Live Plants In An Aquarium.

7. Live Plants Keep Fish Healthy

My personal favorite on why to keep live plants in an aquarium is for healthy fish. Artificial plants might be easy and handy in maintenance but in the end, even the best material in the world will start to show damage.

Fish could break pieces off which could create sharp edges. Colors will fade and chemicals could be released into the water which can disturb the nitrogen cycle. And keeping a good balance is already tough enough.

And of course for all the other reasons I listed above. A healthy aquarium with an awesome aqua design is just breathtaking. Why ruin it with plastic fake stuff and risk the health of your fish.


And this is the end of my article about 7 Benefits Of Live Plants In An Aquarium.

Thank you for reading my article about 7 benefits for live plants in an aquarium. This blog posts only covers a few beneficial reasons as there are many more reasons why to add live plants.

So toss those plastic fake ugly artificial plants away and start enjoying a healthy thriving aquarium with actual real-life plants.

As soon live plants are added the difference will be huge immediately. It looks so much more alive, real, and satisfying. Especially after designing an underwater world.

If there are any questions about 7 benefits for live plants in an aquarium. Then I would love to see them in the comment box below.


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