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8 Best Aquarium Plants That Grow On Driftwood and Rock

Yesterday I was looking for some inspiration for my planted aquariums.

And I was totally amazed by how people have created beautiful aquascapes in their aquarium.

Especially the plants that attach to the driftwood and rock really stand out in those aquariums.

But are these plants real?

If yes, then how could they attach to rock and wood.

So I did some research and find out all the answers.

In this article, I am going to share with you the best aquarium plants that can grow on driftwood and rocks.

And I will also tell you how you can attach them to rock and wood.

Best Aquarium Plant To Grow On Wood and Rocks image

Best Aquarium Plants That Grow On Driftwood and Rocks

1. Anubias

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PARAMETERSVALUES
PLANTAnubias
COMMON NAMES
SCIENTIFIC NAMEAnubias
FAMILYAraceae
CARE LEVELEasy
LIGHT REQUIREMENTLow-Moderate
GROWTH RATESlow
TEMPERATURE72-82°F
pH6.5 – 7.8
HARDNESS60- 160 ppm
PLACEMENTMid-background
MAXIMUM SIZE11+ Inches
MINIMUM TANK SIZE5 Gallons
PROPAGATIONRhizome Division

Anubias is one of the popular plants in the aquarium hobby.

This plant is very hardy so it is an ideal choice for beginners

It doesn’t have real roots. 

Instead, it has rhizomes that you can easily attach to any rock and driftwood.

How much light does Anubias require?

Anubias is not very demanding when it comes to light.

It can grow in almost any lighting condition whether that is a low or very bright light.

Under low lighting conditions, its growth will be slower.

And under high lighting conditions, it will grow faster but it can also cause algae growth on this plant.

So ideally, you should provide it light anywhere between two to four watts per gallon.

What’s the best place to keep it in an aquarium?

Anubias is a relatively short aquarium plant that can grow about 11 inches tall.

So you should keep it in the foreground or midground of your aquarium.

If you have a small tank then you can also keep it in the middle ground of the aquarium.

Ideal water parameters

The ideal temperature for the proper growth of Anubias is between 72 to 82 degrees Fahrenheit.

Its pH tolerance range is between 6.5 to 7.8 and the hardness tolerance range is between 3-8 KH.

How to keep it in an aquarium?

There are several ways you can keep Anubias in your aquarium.

You can either plant it into the substrate like gravel or you can attach it to rock and driftwood and then put it inside your aquarium.

How to attach it to rock and driftwood?

You can use superglue, fishing line, or a cotton string to attach Anubias to rock and driftwood.

Fertilization requirements

To see the best results, you should regularly supplement Anubias with fertilizers.

You should also supplement it with additional carbon dioxide gas but it is not absolutely necessary.

Check the latest price of this plant at Amazon.com here

Check the latest price of this plant at Amazon.co.uk here

2. Java Fern

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PARAMETERSVALUES
PLANTJava Fern
COMMON NAMESJava Fern
SCIENTIFIC NAMEMicrosorum pteropus
FAMILYPolypodiaceae
CARE LEVELEasy
LIGHT REQUIREMENTLow to Moderate
GROWTH RATELow to Moderate
TEMPERATURE68-82oF
pH6.0-7.5
HARDNESS60-160 ppm
PLACEMENTMid to Background
MAXIMUM SIZE13.5 inches
MINIMUM TANK SIZE5 Gallons

Java fern is another one of the most popular aquarium plants in the hobby. It is also one of the best plants for Tetras.

This plant can tolerate a wide range of water parameters.

Also, it is a relatively cheap plant which makes it an ideal choice for beginners.

Java fern doesn’t have real roots, instead, it has rhizomes.

So it doesn’t require any substrate for planting in the aquarium.

You can easily attach it to any rock and wood and then put it inside your aquarium.

How much light does Java fern require?

Java fern is not very light-demanding.

You can keep it in low to medium lighting conditions.

If you keep it under high lighting conditions, its leaves will start turning brown.

So ideally, you should provide it 1.5 to 2 of light per gallon.

What’s the best place to keep it in an aquarium?

Java fern can grow pretty tall and wide so ideally, you should keep it in the mid-ground or background of your aquarium

How to keep it in an aquarium?

As mentioned earlier, Java fern doesn’t have real roots, instead, it has rhizome.

So it doesn’t actually require any substrate.

Though you can bury its rhizomes into the substrate like sand or gravel and keep it that way in your aquarium.

Or you can also attach it to driftwood and rock and then put it inside your aquarium.

How to attach Java fern to rock and driftwood?

You can use a cotton string or fish line to tie it to rock or driftwood.

Or you can also use superglue to tie it to rock or driftwood.

Either way can work out just fine.

But, when you attach it using cotton string, over the period the string will get disintegrated and that can loosen up the plant.

So using a superglue or fish line is a good option.

Ideal water parameters

As mentioned earlier, Java fern can tolerate a wide range of water parameters.

That being said, the ideal temperature for the proper growth of Java fern is between 68 to 82 degrees Fahrenheit.

Its pH tolerance range is between 6 to 7.5 and hardness tolerance ranges between 3-8 KH.

Fertilization requirements

Java fern is a pretty hardy plant and can do well without any additional fertilization.

But if you want quicker growth then you can supplement it with fertilizers.

This plant draws most of its nutrients through leaves so you should add fertilizers in the form of liquid.

Check the latest price of this plant at Amazon.com here

Check the latest price of this plant at Amazon.co.uk here

3. Java Moss

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PARAMETERSVALUES
PLANTJava moss
SCIENTIFIC NAMEVesicularia dubyana
FAMILYHypnaceae
CARE LEVELVery easy
LIGHT REQUIREMENTLow to Bright
GROWTH RATEFast
TEMPERATURE59-86°F
pH5.0 to 8.0
HARDNESS60- 240 ppm
PLACEMENTForeground
MAXIMUM SIZE4 inches
MINIMUM TANK SIZE5 gallon

Java moss is one of the most popular aquarium plants. It is one of the best plants for Guppies.

This plant is commonly used in aquascaping.

This plant can tolerate a wide range of water parameters and it is very easy to maintain which makes it an ideal choice for beginners.

As it is a very popular plant, it is available in most shops and online.

It is also one of the most popular plants among breeders as it provides a lot of good hiding places to the fry and protection to eggs.

How much light does it require?

Java Moss is very undemanding and can grow in almost any lighting condition.

Though there will be some difference when you keep it under low or high lighting conditions.

Under high lighting conditions, it will grow more compact and dense compared to when you keep it under low lighting conditions.

But keeping it under high lighting conditions can also cause algae growth on this plant.

Checkout our lighting recommendation

What’s the best place to keep it in an aquarium?

Java Moss doesn’t grow tall and it is usually used as a carpet plant in the aquarium.

How to keep it in an aquarium?

There are several ways you can keep Java Moss in your aquarium, depending on what aesthetics you want to create in your aquarium.

The simplest way is to keep it as a floating plant in your aquarium.

You can just toss it into the aquarium and it will find its place over the time and get attached to any kind of ornament or wall of your aquarium.

The most common way is to keep it as a carpet plant or attach it to any ornament in your tanks like wood and rock.

How to attach it to rock and wood?

You can use fishing line or super glue to attach Java moss to rock or wood.

Ideal water parameters

Java Moss can tolerate temperature as low as 59 degrees Fahrenheit to up to 86 degrees Fahrenheit.

So you can easily keep it in a cold water aquarium.

Besides, its pH tolerance range is between 5-8 and it does well in soft water.

Fertilization requirements

Java Moss is a pretty hardy plant and can do well without any fertilizers.

But to speed up the growth and for the compact growth, you can supplement it with some fertilizers.

You should use liquid fertilizers for this plant.

Check the latest price of this plant at Amazon.com here

Check the latest price of this plant at Amazon.co.uk here

4. Dwarf Baby Tears

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PARAMETERSVALUES
PLANTDwarf baby tears
COMMON NAMESDwarf baby tears
SCIENTIFIC NAMEHemianthus Callitrichoides
FAMILYScrophulariaceae
CARE LEVELModerate
LIGHT REQUIREMENTHigh
GROWTH RATESlow
TEMPERATURE68-82° F
pH5.0-7.5
HARDNESSKH 0-10
PLACEMENTForeground
MAXIMUM SIZE6 inches
MINIMUM TANK SIZE5 gallon
PROPAGATIONCuttings, Runners

Dwarf baby tears is a small slow-growing aquarium plant.

This plant is very popular among fish breeders as it provides a lot of hiding places to the eggs.

You can easily plant it on the substrate or you can also attach it to any rock or driftwood in your aquarium.

How much light does it require?

For proper growth of Dwarf baby tears, you should provide it bright lighting of at least 3-4 watts per gallon.

What’s the best place to keep it in an aquarium?

Dwarf baby tears is the smallest aquarium plant in the hobby which makes it an ideal foreground plant.

You can also use it as a carpet plant.

How to keep it in an aquarium?

There are a few ways you can keep Dwarf baby tears in your aquarium depending on the aesthetics you are looking for.

The simplest way is to just toss it into the aquarium and let it float.

Over time it will find its place in the aquarium and get attached to anything in your aquarium.

Another way is to plant it into the substrate.

If you plant it in a nutrient-rich substrate then it will grow faster and denser and create a carpet effect.

The popular way of keeping it in an aquarium is by attaching it to any ornament like driftwood or rock and then putting it inside the aquarium.

How to attach it to rock and driftwood?

You can use cotton string to attach it to rock or driftwood.

After some time the the the cotton string will get disintegrated and it will remain attached to the rock or driftwood by its rhizomes.

Ideal water parameters

Dwarf baby tears can tolerate a wide range of water parameters.

That being said, the ideal temperature for the proper growth of this plant is between 62-82 degrees Fahrenheit.

Its pH tolerance range is between 5 to 7.5 and the hardness tolerance range is up to 10 KH.

Fertilization requirements

For faster and denser growth, you should regularly supplement it with carbon dioxide fertilizers.

If you plant it in the substrate then you should also supplement it with some substrate fertilizers like root tabs.

Check the latest price of this plant at Amazon.com here

Check the latest price of this plant at Amazon.co.uk here

12 Benefits of Live Plants in an Aquarium (Pros and Cons)

5. African Water Fern

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PARAMETERSVALUES
PLANTAfrican Water Fern
COMMON NAMESAfrican Water Fern, Bolbitis, African fern, Congo fern, African water fern, creeping fern, water fern
SCIENTIFIC NAMEBolbitis Heudelotii
FAMILYPolypodiaceae
CARE LEVELEasy
LIGHT REQUIREMENTLow
GROWTH RATEMedium
TEMPERATURE68-82.4 °F
pH5.0-7.0
HARDNESS4-12 dGH
PLACEMENTMid-ground, Foreground
MAXIMUM SIZE11 inches
MINIMUM TANK SIZE10 gallon
PROPAGATIONCutting

African water fern is one of the popular decorative plants in the hobby. It is a very good oxygenating plant.

This is a slow-growing plant that can grow a maximum of 11 inches tall.

It is relatively less demanding and also easy to care for so it is a good choice for beginners.

How much light does African water fern require?

This plant is not very demanding when it comes to light.

In fact, you should not keep it in high lighting conditions and should only keep it under low lighting conditions because high lighting conditions can cause algae growth on this plant.

But you should provide it light for 12 hours every day.

What’s the best place to keep it in an aquarium?

As mentioned earlier, African water fern is a short plant that can grow a maximum of 11 inches tall.

So ideally, you should keep it in the middle ground or foreground of your aquarium.

How to keep it in an aquarium?

There are a couple of ways you can keep African water fern in your aquarium.

You can either plant it into the substrate of your aquarium.

Or you can attach it to any ornament in your aquarium like rock or wood and then put it inside your aquarium.

How to attach it to rock and driftwood?

You can use a fishing line, rubber band or cotton thread to attach African water form to rock or driftwood.

Attaching it using cotton thread is recommended because the thread will get disintegrated after some time.

And by the time it will get disintegrated, this plant will get attached to rock or wood by its roots.

Ideal water parameters

The ideal temperature for the proper growth of African water fern is between 62-82 degrees Fahrenheit.

Its pH tolerance range is between 5 to 7 and the hardness tolerance range is between 4 to 12 dGH.

Fertilization requirements

African water fern doesn’t require a lot of fertilizers for its proper growth.

But for optimum growth of African water fern, you should regularly supplement it with fertilizers that are rich in carbon dioxide and other minerals in small doses.

You should add these fertilizers in the form of liquid.

Check the latest price of this plant at Amazon.com here

6 Tips to Take Care of Live Plants in Aquarium (For Beginners)

6. Riccia Fluitans

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PARAMETERSVALUES
PLANTRiccia fluitans
COMMON NAMESFloating Crystalwort
SCIENTIFIC NAMERiccia fluitans
FAMILYRicciaceae
CARE LEVELEasy
LIGHT REQUIREMENTModerate
GROWTH RATEModerate
TEMPERATURE56-86°F
pH6.0-8.0
HARDNESSModerate soft to very hard water
PLACEMENTSurface or foreground
MAXIMUM SIZE1.9 inches
MINIMUM TANK SIZE10 gallon

Riccia fluitans is another popular plant that you can keep by attaching it to rock and wood in your aquarium.

It is also known as Slender riccia.

This plant can tolerate a wide range of water parameters and you can easily keep it in a cold water aquarium.

This plant is also very easy to care for which makes it an ideal choice for beginners.

How much light does it require?

Riccia fluitans is not very light-demanding.

But you should provide it at least moderate lighting conditions for its proper growth.

You can provide it light anywhere between two to three watts per gallon.

What is the best place to keep it in an aquarium?

Riccia fluitans is a short plant and it is commonly used as a carpet plant, so you should keep it in the foreground of your aquarium.

How to keep it in an aquarium?

There are several ways you can keep Riccia fluitans in your aquarium depending on the aesthetics you are going for.

The simplest way is to keep it as a floating plant in your aquarium, though it is not a very common practice.

As this plant grows dense and compact just like Java Moss, you can also use it as a carpet plant in the foreground of your aquarium.

The popular way of keeping it in the aquarium is by attaching it to any ornament in your aquarium that could be a rock and driftwood and then putting it inside your aquarium.

How to attach it to rock and driftwood?

You can use a fishing line, super glue or cotton string to attach it to rock or driftwood.

Ideal water parameters

As mentioned earlier, Riccia fluitans can tolerate a wide range of water parameters.

That being said, the ideal temperature for the proper growth of this plant is between 56 to 86 degrees Fahrenheit.

Its pH tolerance range is between 6 to 8 and hardness tolerance ranges between 120-400 PPM.

So you can easily keep it in any kind of hard water aquarium.

Fertilization requirements

Riccia fluitans is a very hardy plant and can do well without any fertilizers.

But for faster and denser growth, you can supplement it with fertilizers.

It draws most of its nutrients through its leaves so you should supplement it fertilizers in the form of liquid.

Check the latest price of this plant at Amazon.com here

Check the latest price of this plant at Amazon.co.uk here

7. Christmas Moss

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PARAMETERSVALUES
PLANTChristmas moss
COMMON NAMESChristmas moss
SCIENTIFIC NAMEVesicularia montagnei
FAMILYHypnaceae
CARE LEVELEasy
LIGHT REQUIREMENTModerate to high
GROWTH RATEModerate to high
TEMPERATURE68-82°F
pH5-7.5
HARDNESS5-20 dH
PLACEMENTFloating, foreground
MAXIMUM SIZE4 inches
MINIMUM TANK SIZE5 gallon

Christmas moss is another variety of Moss plants and it has similar features to Java moss.

It is one of the best plants for Shrimps.

This plant is also very easy to care for and can tolerate a wide range of water parameters which makes it beginner-friendly.

It is also commonly used in the aquascaping hobby.

And it is also very popular among fish breeders as it provides a lot of hiding places to the fish fry and eggs.

Besides, you can easily attach it to any ornament like a rock or wood and put it in your aquarium.

How much light does it require?

Christmas moss is not very light-demanding.

It can do well in almost any lighting condition.

But to get the best results and denser growth, you should provide it at least moderate lighting conditions of at least 2-3 watts per gallon.

For faster growth, you can also provide it more light but it can also cause algae growth on this plant.

What is the best place to keep it in an aquarium?

As it is a short plant that grows very dense and compact, it is usually used as a carpet plant in the foreground of the aquarium.

Another popular way to keep it is by attaching it to rock or wood.

How to keep it in an aquarium?

There are several ways you can keep Christmas Moss in your aquarium.

The simplest way is to keep it as a floating plant and it will provide a lot of hiding places to the fry.

You can also plant it into the substrate and use it as a foreground carpet plant.

The popular way of keeping it is by attaching it to rock or driftwood and then putting it inside the aquarium.

How to attach it to rock or driftwood?

You can use a fishing line, superglue or cotton string to attach it to rock or driftwood.

Ideal water parameters

The ideal temperature for the proper growth of Christmas moss is between 68 to 82 degree Fahrenheit

And its pH tolerance range is between 5 to 7.5.

Fertilization requirements

Christmas moss can do well without any additional fertilization.

But for compact, denser and faster growth you can always supplement it with additional CO2 injection.

CO2 injection will also help to enhance its coloration.

Check the latest price of this plant at Amazon.com here

Check the latest price of this plant at Amazon.co.uk here

8. Hygrophila Pinnatifida

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PARAMETERSVALUES
PLANTHygrophila Pinnatifida
COMMON NAMESHygrophila Pinnatifida
SCIENTIFIC NAMEHygrophila Pinnatifida
FAMILYAcanthaceae
CARE LEVELMedium
LIGHT REQUIREMENTMedium
GROWTH RATEMedium
TEMPERATURE59-78 °F
pH6-7.5
HARDNESS2 - 12°dKH
PLACEMENTMid-background
MAXIMUM SIZE11+ inches
MINIMUM TANK SIZE10 gallon
PROPAGATIONCuttings

Hygrophila pinnatifida belongs to Acanthaceae family.

It is becoming popular in aquascaping because of its unique leaf shape and coloration.

This plant features color ranging from green to brown to red.

A substrate is not necessary for keeping this plant in the aquarium and it can easily get attached to any ornamental like a rock or driftwood in your aquarium.

This plant can also flower in your aquarium and produce a beautiful purple flower.

How much light does it require?

You should provide at least moderate lighting conditions for the proper growth of Hygrophila pinnatifida.

If you are going for its red coloration then you should provide it high lighting conditions.

What is the best place to keep it in an aquarium?

Though Hygrophila pinnatifida grows tall in the aquarium, it doesn’t really grow very tall.

So ideally, you should keep it in the foreground or mid-ground of your aquarium.

How to keep it in an aquarium?

There are a couple of ways you can keep Hygrophila pinnatifida in your aquarium.

The first way is by planting it into the substrate of your aquarium.

Another way is by attaching it to any ornamental like driftwood or rock and then putting inside the aquarium.

How to attach it to rock or driftwood?

You can easily attach it to rock or driftwood using a fishing line.

Ideal water parameters

Hygrophila pinnatifida can tolerate temperature as low as 59 degrees Fahrenheit to up to 78 degrees Fahrenheit.

So you can easily keep it in a cold water aquarium.

Besides, its pH tolerance range is between 6-7.5 and hardness tolerance ranges between 2 to 12 dKH.

Fertilization requirements

For optimum growth of Hygrophila pinnatifida, you should regularly supplement it with liquid fertilizers.

For the best results, you can also provide CO2 injections.

Check the latest price of this plant at Amazon.com here

Check the latest price of this plant at Amazon.co.uk here

20 Tips to Maintain a Healthy Aquarium

FAQ

How to attach aquarium plants to the driftwood and rocks?

There are several ways you can attach aquarium plants to any ornament in your aquarium whether that is rock or driftwood.

You can attach the plants by using a fishing line.

The benefit of using the fishing line is that it will not get disintegrated and it will keep the plant in place i.e. attached to the rock or driftwood.

Another way is by using rubber bands.

The benefit of attaching plants using rubber bands is that it is very easy to do.

But you can easily see these rubber bands and that can mess up your aesthetics.

You can also attach aquarium plants using cotton string.

Now, this is the most popular way of attaching plants, especially among veteran aquarists.

When you attach plants using cotton string, after some time, the cotton thread will get disintegrated.

But by the time the plant will get attached to the rock or driftwood by its rhizomes or roots.

Another way of attaching aquarium plants without messing up your aesthetics is by using super glue.

Now you may be wondering super glue may contain toxic chemicals that can harm your fish.

But that’s not the case.

Super glue is commonly used to attach aquarium plants to rocks and driftwood and it doesn’t cause any issue.

What are the fastest growing aquarium plants?

There is a lot of variety available when it comes to fast growing aquarium plants.

There are stem plants like Amazon sword that can grow very fast.

Also, there are floating plants like Dwarf Sagittaria that can grow pretty fast.

Also, there are some carpet plants like Java Moss that you can also attach to rock or wood that grow pretty fast.

I have written a detailed article on this topic on my website here.

Can I grow aquarium plants in gravel?

Yes, there are several plants that don’t draw a lot of nutrients through their roots.

And so they don’t actually require a nutrient-rich substrate or soil for planting them in the aquarium.

You can easily keep such plants in the gravel.

Some examples of these kinds of plants include Anubias, Amazon sword, Jungle Vallisneria, Ludwigia repens, Java Moss, etc.

I have written a detailed article on this topic on my website here.

Will Anubias grow on driftwood?

Yes, you can easily grow Anubias on driftwood.

Anubias doesn’t have any real roots instead it has rhizomes.

You can attach it to driftwood and almost any ornament in your aquarium using a fishing line or cotton thread.

Can aquarium plants grow without soil?

Yes, there are a lot of aquarium plants that can grow without soil.

There are several aquarium plants that can grow in gravel.

There are several plants that can grow in sand.

Also, there are some floating plants that don’t require any kind of substrate and you can just keep them floating in your aquarium.

Can you use superglue in a fish tank?

Yes, you can use super glue to attach plants to driftwood and rock in your aquarium.

Conclusion

So these are the best aquarium plants that can grow on driftwood and rocks.

I hope you found this article helpful.

If you do, please share it.

Also, let me know if you have any questions and suggestions in the comments section below.

Happy fishkeeping!

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11 thoughts on “8 Best Aquarium Plants That Grow On Driftwood and Rock”

  1. great article i have most of these plants they’re great when carrying out maintenance as i can just remove the wood with all the plants attached in one go and clean gravel, there’s another one i discovered recently that’s definitely worth adding to the list and that’s Bucephalandra there’s loads of different types and they mostly fall under the easy category for care, there great for nano tanks and they can also flower under water

    Reply
  2. I want to have a aquarium which I want to have driftwood and this really helped. The thing is I have neon tetras and corydoras but I have a really intense light so I want to have something that can cover the light. I also heard that corydoras will damage certain plants.

    Reply
  3. And also I heard that to breed Corydoras the water should be cooler than the normal temperature but where I live the temperature is usually 27 Celsius. How can I make the water cooler

    Reply

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