10 Low-Light Freshwater Aquarium Plants

low light aquarium plant

There are lots of different plants that you can put in your aquarium, but their lighting needs are not all the same.

You will be able to find many low light plants that will look great in your tank while providing your fish with a comfortable habitat.

10 Low-Light Freshwater Aquarium Plants

1. Monoselenium Tenerum

Monoselenium Tenerum

This particular plant is a good addition to many aquariums, and it makes for some nice soft flooring. Just make sure that you spread these plants out evenly at the bottom of the tank. The soft texture of these plants means they won’t injure your fish at all. They can, however, break quite easily if they are not handled properly.

2. Java Moss

Java Moss

Java Moss is a classic choice when it comes to choosing vegetation for an aquarium. It is very resilient and can live through even the harshest of tank conditions. These plants don’t need much light at all, and they can add a nice look to your aquarium. It will be necessary to trim your Java Moss once in a while so overgrowth doesn’t become an issue.

This is a good choice if you are planning to breed any fish, as it will provide the perfect place for egg hatching. It will also provide new juvenile fish with a place to play with each other.

3. Anubias


Anubias is a flowering plant that is capable of adapting to a variety of water conditions without any issues whatsoever. One of the best things about these plants is that you won’t need to constantly maintain them. You will need to trim the leaves sometimes to get the most ideal growth though. This is a good choice for those who have a larger tank that needs some nice low-light plants in it.

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4. Vallisneria


Vallisneria is the perfect plant for freshwater tanks in low light conditions. It has a very unique appearance with leaves that grow right from the roots in groups. These plants do not grow very quickly, but that just means less maintenance work for you. They do have to go through an adjustment period when put into a new tank. Once this happens, you should start to notice faster growth on a consistent basis.

5. Sagittaria


If you are looking for grass-like plants to put in your freshwater aquarium, Sagittaria is an excellent option to consider. These plants will look great in any position in your tank, including the back. You will want to consider the species of the fish in the tank when deciding where to put these plants. It is important that you position them in a place that matches where your fish tend to spend most of their time.

6. Taxiphyllum/Flame Moss

Taxiphyllum is a fairly common moss that is used in aquariums due to its beautiful appearance. It is constantly climbing, which means that it is always in direct contact with the light source you are using. This is one of the best plants you can put in your tank when it comes to achieving a nice aesthetic.

7. Bacopa Caroliniana

Bacopa Caroliniana

This plant is a great choice when you need to provide your fish with vegetative cover. It doesn’t matter what your light source is, as the needs of these plants are minimal. The leaves of this plant are turned outward, so it always gets all the light it needs.

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8. Cladophora Aegagropila

Cladophora Aegagropila

When you want a plant that is a little bit different from the others, this one is certainly worth considering. It grows in a ball shape, which none of these other plants do. This makes for a great decorative flare for your aquarium. This plant is also very soft, so you won’t have to worry about any of your fish getting injured at all. You’ll probably notice your fish rubbing themselves against it. This is not a great choice if you are looking for plants that will provide smaller fish with a way to hide from the larger fish.

9. Java Fern

Java Fern

The Java Fern is characterized by its short but wide leaves that branch out very far. This plant can be affixed by rocks, driftwood and much more with an angling line or just some string. It is naturally found in rivers growing on the sides of the water. This is another excellent choice to explore when you are looking for plants that don’t need much light and are easy to care for. You won’t have to worry about much maintenance work with these.

10. Crypts


The Cryptocoryne Wendtii plant goes well on the floor of just about any freshwater aquarium. You can get it in a variety of colors, so it can add a nice aesthetic touch to your tank. It takes a little while for this plant to adjust to its new environment, so you’ll have to be patient.

It is perfectly normal for some of the leaves on this plant to turn brown and die during the initial adjustment period. This will eventually stop once it gets used to being in your tank. Just leave it alone while it is getting acclimated. These plants can grow up to six inches and make for great cover.

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  • The Monoselenium Tenerum plant goes well on the floor of freshwater tanks and is very soft to the touch.
  • Java Moss is another great choice because of its nice aesthetic and natural resiliency to even the harshest conditions.
  • Anubias is also highly adaptable but requires occasional trimming so overgrowth doesn’t become a problem.
  • Vallisneria is a slow growing plant that must be allowed to adjust to its new environment before it really begins to thrive.
  • Sagittaria can look good and thrive in any position in your tank, but you’ll need to place it in the right spot according to the fish species you have.
  • Taxiphyllum is a popular freshwater aquarium plant that is gorgeous and always faces the light.
  • Bacopa Caroliniana is the perfect choice when looking for a plant that will give your fish adequate cover.
  • Cladophora Aegagropila is another soft plant that fish love to rub up against because of just how good it feels.
  • Java Fern has wide and short leaves, and it doesn’t require much maintenance at all.
  • Crypts come in a wide range of colors and can grow up to six inches, so they are also excellent for providing fish with cover.
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