Artificial Plants For Aquarium

Artificial plants are an excellent choice for both experienced and beginner aquarium enthusiasts because they are usually made by using plastic or silk materials. Many fish species also prefer artificial plants that eat real plants. You should use artificial plants if you keep African Cichlids and fairly large herbivorous fish in your aquarium. At present, different size and colors of artificial plants are available with sensible cost in online shops year round. Besides these, they are long lasting and they do not influence the oxygen level and do not produce carbon dioxide in the aquarium.

Benefits of Artificial Plants

  • Artificial Plant does not rot and never create pollution in the tank;
  • You can easily clean the artificial plants when it becomes dirty or covered with algae; 
  • They do not disturb the composition of water in your aquarium; 
  • You can easily make this plant look brand new; 
  • It does not overgrow, die and does not need pruning;
  • It does not get sick;
  • They do not need fertilizing, lighting, nutrient substrates or CO2 supplementation;
  • They are long lasting;
  • They do not influence the oxygen level;
  • They do not produce carbon dioxide in aquarium;
  • You can easily disinfect this plant using bleach and make easily harmful bacteria or pests free;
  • Artificial plants look like new for 5 years or more if you do regular maintenance;

Disadvantages of Artificial Plants

  • It never creates photosynthesis. When you install artificial plants in your aquariums, it needs more powerful aeration, because artificial plants do not produce oxygen (O2) and do not absorb carbon dioxide (CO2);
  • This type of plant disrupts the biological balance in aquarium and lead to vitamin starvation of fish and other animals;
  • Artificial plants do not contribute to remove of nitrates in aquarium;

Why will you choose artificial aquarium plants or live plants?

There are many options to choose artificial or live plants for your aquarium such as: 

  • Silk made artificial aquarium plants are almost identical from natural real plants. They look very realistic and some of the time, their appearance is beautiful and attractive than live plants. But for running a tank with live plants, extra equipment, fertilizers, CO2 and strong flourescent lighting are required; 
  • Artificial plants do not take oxygen, fertilizer and finally they do not clog the filtration system. In case of aquarium with live plants, leaves isolate and stop the filter inlet and finally block the whole filter system;
  • Artificial plants does not need specific substrate at all for plantation and you can plant it anywhere while live plants must be planted with specific substrate;
  • Cleaning of artificial plants are very easy than real plants and it never decay while live plants decay and make your aquarium nasty; 
  • Artificial plants do not carry any parasites or snails. But aquarium with live plants carries parasites or pest if you do not clean it properly. In this case, your aquarium fish may infect with parasites or any harmful pest;

Aquarium Decoration with Artificial Plants

For properly decoration of your aquarium with artificial plants, firstly you need to hide the necessary equipment in the aquarium. In this case, you should select long and dense plants to cover all the filters, thermometers and heaters. Plant should not be longer than the aquarium; otherwise, it makes problem to hide equipment behind it. To hide the filter or other instruments, place them in front of longer plants. So the aquarium will look natural.

Artificial plants do not require additional lighting. In this case, you should use ordinary aquarium fluorescent lamps which emit blue and red light, which is necessary for life to fish and plants. You can use beautiful stones or some small plants. Most aquarists prefer long plants along the back wall. You can also add plants of a shorter length and color to avoid a solid wall.

Many species of schooling fish such as tetras feel safety in an aquarium with artificial plants and their color will become more saturated.  Natural and artificial objects in the tank should be ratio of 50/50; this will preserve the aesthetic appearance.

Cleaning Artificial Aquarium Plants

You can easily clean artificial plants using boiling water. Boiling water easily kills plaque from algae. To clean plants properly you should follow the following steps;

Firstly you should put the plants in boiling water for 10-15 minutes. Clean the scraping from algae and put it back into the aquarium. Sometimes it is permissible to use a bleach solution to remove algae scraping on plants. In this case, you should keep in mind that bleach may discolor partially or completely your plants and cause significant harm to your fish if you do not wash it completely. At present, all quality plastic aquarium plants are covered with a special polish which prevents exposure to bleach. Never use bleach during cleaning artificial snags and corals. 

Read Also: Best Substrate for Planted Tank: Choose the Best One

Safe Cleaning Artificial plants and Scenery by Using Bleach

Mix 1 part bleach and 9 parts pure water and make a 10% solution. Place the scenery and artificial plants in the solution for 15 minutes. After 15 minutes place the scenery in the normal water for 15 minutes and rinse thoroughly in running water.

Cleaning Silk Made Artificial Plants 

At first, plants need to rinse thoroughly with hot water. Then you need to make a paste from a mixture of non-iodized salt and lemon juice. Apply the paste on the silk made plants and carefully clean the algae using a toothbrush. When all the algae scraping are removed, then it needs to rinse the product under hot running water. 

Concluding Remarks

At present, various types and sizes artificial plants are available in the pet fish markets with sensible cost which have long been used in aquarium sector. There are many aquarium fish which love to eat or destroy the live plants. In this case, artificial plants are best choice for your aquarium and you can keep any fish, snails and shrimp without fear that eat live plants. Artificial plants look like new for 5 years or more if you do regular maintenance. In case if you are not a fan of artificial plants you may choose between Madagascar Lace and Aponogeton Bernierianus.

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