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Plants for a Walstad Method Aquarium



If you're looking to create a natural and low-maintenance aquarium, the Walstad method might be the perfect choice for you.

We recently discussed "What is the Walstad Method?" in our past article.

Today's discussion will focus on which plants work best with the Walstad method.

Picking the appropriate plants for the Walstad Method is crucial. 

Sadly, many aquarium plants that are featured in complex aquascapes will not thrive in a Walstad. 

These include most carpeting plants and other plants that require a lot of CO2 and lighting.

It's necessary to plant abundantly! 

The more aquatic plants there are and the faster they’re growing, the more harmful substances are absorbed out of the water column, ensuring a safe environment for your Aquatic friends!



When choosing plants for your Walstad method aquarium, it's important to choose plants that are hardy and can thrive in low-light conditions.

Some good options include Java fern, Anubias, and Amazon sword.

These plants are all relatively easy to care for and can help to create a natural-looking environment in your aquarium.

Another important factor to consider when choosing plants for your Walstad method aquarium is their ability to absorb nutrients from the water.

Plants like Hornwort and Water sprite are excellent choices because they can absorb excess nutrients from the water, which helps to keep the water clean and clear.

Lots of surface area = Beneficial bacteria colonization, too!




 Once you've chosen your plants, it's important to think about where you want to place them in your aquarium.

In general, you should try to create a balance between foreground, midground, and background plants. 

Here's further reading on this: Some Great Foreground Plants, & Creating the Illusion of Depth in a Nano Aquarium

Smaller foreground plants like Dwarf hairgrass and Java moss can help to create that sense of depth in your aquarium....

....While midground plants like Cryptocoryne and trimmed Ludwigia can add some color and texture.

Background plants like Amazon sword and Vallisneria can help to fill out the space and create a backdrop and shelter for tiny fry and shrimp.



One of the benefits of a Walstad method aquarium is that it requires less maintenance than other types of aquariums.

However, that doesn't mean that you can completely neglect your plants.

It's important to regularly trim your plants to prevent them from becoming too overgrown, and to remove any dead or decaying plant matter from the aquarium.

In addition, you should also monitor the nutrient levels in your aquarium to ensure that your plants are getting the nutrients they need to thrive.

You can do this by testing the water regularly and adjusting the nutrient levels as needed.


Choosing the right plants for your Walstad method aquarium is an important step in creating that natural and low-maintenance ecosystem.

By choosing hardy plants that can absorb excess nutrients from the water, and placing them strategically in your aquarium, you can create a beautiful and healthy environment for your fish to thrive in - plus, minimize the time you spend doing aquatic chores!

With just a little bit of maintenance and care, your Walstad method aquarium can be a stunning addition to any home or office.

 - Maricel 🥰🍃🌿

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