6 Low Maintenance Fish Tank Plants

When setting up your first fish tank you want to make it as low maintenance as possible, and that goes for the plants you choose as well as the fish. However, there are plenty of easy to look after plants to choose from, which will bring your aquarium to life.

It might be tempting to choose artificial plants; however, actually planting live plants can bring great benefits to your aquarium and help to reduce maintenance. For example, live plants use up the nutrients within the water, which helps to keep algae at bay.

Real plants also provide a natural habitat for your fish, giving them hiding places and give your tank a much nicer appeal overall. We’ve turned to the experts and our folks from Aquacadabra were kind enough to give us a guide to six relatively low maintenance plants to try in your first aquarium:

Java Moss


This is a very commonly found plant in aquariums everywhere, mainly because it grows quickly, is easy to look after and very difficult to kill off. It grows like a fuzzy carpet on the bottom of the tank so it’s best to attach it to something like a rock, otherwise, it might float and cause problems.

It grows well in most water temperatures but prefers around 73 degrees. It needs medium lighting for maximum growth and is a great decoration for the bottom of your tank – perfect for hiding the substrate.

Dwarf Baby Tears


This is another carpeting plant which looks stunning in aquariums. It creates a thick and vibrant carpet of leaves which also produce tiny bubbles – hence the name. It grows in brighter lighting and a temperature of around 74 degrees and is another that is perfect for covering the substrate.

Dwarf Hairgrass


This plant looks stunning next to the stone and grows very quickly – it might well require frequent trimming due to its growth rate. It looks very much like grass so is a perfect landscaping plant for any tank.

It likes bright light and a temperature of around 76 degrees for the best growth possibilities and is a great decorative plant as well as a carpeting one – it contrasts really well with stone, rock, sand, and wood.

Marsilea Minuta

This carpeting plant resembles clover leaves, making it very popular for aquarists. It is easy to look after and grow. It creates a beautiful carpeting effect and prefers water around 73 degrees and medium level lighting.

Amazon Sword


This is another plant found commonly in many aquariums thanks to its stunning sword-like leaves. Just note that it can grow up to around 21 inches tall, so bear that in mind if you decide to buy it for your fish tank.

It is a beautiful plant, but also incredibly easy to look after and it grows quickly in the right conditions, including medium lighting and around 73-degree water. It’s a great one to use to hide the pipework or filters in your tank.

Java Fern


This plant is incredibly low maintenance and appeals to most aquarists thanks to its unique leaves. It can be planted in any part of the tank and produces stripy thick leaves in bunches. It is a good plant to use to disguise features in the tank but also provides a nice hiding place for fish.

It prefers water that is around 74 degrees and needs a medium to low level of light to grow well and thrive within a tank. It is another that is commonly used by beginners thanks to the very low maintenance nature of it.

These are just six of the low maintenance plants you could choose for your aquarium but there are many more out there – it’s all a question of choosing the right plants for your particular tank – they need to thrive in the conditions you are providing.

When selecting plants you need to make sure they will survive in the water conditions which you have created –don’t try to adjust the water to suit the plants, it’s far easier to do it the other way around.

If you pick the right plants and the right fish for your water conditions your tank should become a mini Ecosystem all of its own requiring little extra maintenance beyond the regular needs of any fish tank.

Live plants help to support the fish, look beautiful and can help to keep the nutrient levels in your water low naturally, negating the need to use any kinds of chemicals in the water, which makes it a healthier and more natural tank all around.

If you are worried live plants take a lot of looking after then select a few from our list and you will soon realize how easy it is to take care of them. Not only that, your fish and fish tank will thank you for adding them into the environment.