02-25-2012, 12:04 PM
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Originally Posted by Kurious
Byron, what are your nice floating plants? I definitely will consider adding some (NOT duckweed) but don't want a type that can invade my tank and become problematic? Thanks in advance.
That photo isn't one of my tanks, by the way, just a good example I found somewhere of an authentic Amazonian aquascape for cardinals and similar forest fish. But, I do know the floating plants, they are Amazon Frogbit. I have this in my 70g flooded Amazon tank [photos under "Aquariums" below my name on the left] but it is 50/50 for me. I have my tanks fairly tightly covered, due to jumping hatchetfish primarily, and I understand this plant can do better with more air circulation such as with an open top tank. It goes through seasonal growth spurts for a couple months, even flowering, then it will die off to barely a couple of one-leaf plants for a couple months, then start back again.
The best floating plant bar none is Water Sprite. Once settled, it will expand across the tank if permitted, but it produces daughter plants on the leaves so frequently that you can remove these and discard the parent plant regularly as you see fit to maintain a cover from minimal to thick. I bought one plant in 1996 or 1997, and over successive generations I have it in most of my tanks and I chuck out plants every couple of weeks. Fish love this plant, the dangling roots collect microscopic plankton, many species spawn in it, fry can successfully hide in it...truly a wonderful plant. And with its fast growth it is excellent at removing toxins and nutrients, and releasing a lot of oxygen through the roots into the water.