How To Anchor Aquarium Plants – 7 Easy Methods

A well-planted environment can add a beautiful look to any aquarium. We need to choose what plants we want to put in our aquarium. How hard can it be? Well, that is a good question.

Most of the time, planting is frustrating. Because after two or three minutes, the planted plants will be floating on the surface of the aquarium. Why is that, you may ask?

The reason for floating is simple. The aquarium plants are lighter than water, so they float unless you have anchored them. So, How do anchor aquarium plants?

In this guide, we will learn about how we can anchor aquarium plants in aquariums.

7 Easy & Effective Ways To Anchor Aquarium Plants

How To Anchor Aquarium Plants
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Plants need some time to form strong root systems. Many of them thrive in the crevices of rocks or wood. Anchoring them will help them stay put in the same place.

To maintain the natural look, we should hide the anchoring props. We have to make sure that we aren’t damaging any roots while doing the anchoring process.

Here are the 7 easy and effective ways to anchor aquarium plants:

Lay down a generous substrate layer

Before buying a plant for an aquarium, we should research how they tend to form their roots. This will help us understand how thick the substrate layer should securely anchor them.

We can use at least 3 inches thick substrate layer for most aquatic plant species for general understanding. Most aquarist uses this method when setting up their planted tank.

We should also keep in mind that this method won’t work on seedlings or plants with shorter roots.

Anchor aquarium plants in crevices

The crevices on driftwood or textured rocks with cracks make them excellent plant anchors. We can use an ultra-thin fishing line to anchor aquarium plants in any gap.

This method is excellent when planting non-rooting or shorter-rooting plants like Java Fern.

Use weights to anchor aquarium plants

We learned that plants could stay rooted in substrate alone, but an external factor can uproot them if there are not anchored. A filter with strong output or bottom dwellers likes to dig into the substrate.

A filter and bottom dwellers are just two of many uprooting culprits. To prevent this, we can use weights to anchor live plants. We can use stones and pebbles pieces to lay at the plant’s base.

This method will work like a charm if you keep fish that like to tug at plants.

Tie aquarium plants to driftwood

If you are aquascaping with driftwood over hardscaping with rocks, you can use the same method to anchor plants to pieces of wood. Use a fishing line to anchor live plants to driftwood.

If you are using mature plants with developed roots, you can wrap the seeds around a part of the driftwood. Here are some examples of live plants that can be anchored to rocks or driftwood:

  • Java Fern.
  • Java Moss.
  • Anubias.
  • African Water Fern.

Tie aquarium plants to rocks

Anchoring live plants to rocks work the same way as striking them into decor crevices. You can use plastic zip ties or rubber bands to anchor a plant to a rock. You can bury the rock in the gravel.

The rocks have enough to the plant down even if they have large leaves. Make sure you tie that plant at least 0.5 inches above the roots. Don’t tie too tightly. This may damage the stem of the plant.

Anchor plants using fish-safe adhesive

You can also use glue for your plants. Cyanoacrylate glue is an instant set of fast-curing glue. It is 100% fish-safe and aquarium-safe. Fishkeepers use it all the time to secure their rockscapes.

Ceramic plant anchors

You can also buy plant anchors store. Those plant anchors are just ceramic weight-shaped like short cylinders. You have to stick the plant’s root and a small part of the stem through them.

If the plants aren’t mature enough to fill the hole, you can use a sponge as a buffer. Now, push the anchor into the gravel.

The ceramic anchors work great if you’re keeping large bottom feeders like Loaches.

Why Do Aquarium Plants Need To Be Anchored?

Aquarium plants
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You may think, why do we need to anchor plants? There are many reasons why we need to land those plants. Plants are light weighted, so even if we plant deep in the subtract, a slight movement is enough to make them float.

Movement can cause by bottom feeders, filter position, and flow rate. Anchors will stop the plant from floating even with some direction in the aquarium.

Bottom feeders

Bottom feeders and bottom dwellers can easily uproot a plant that isn’t anchored securely. When searching for the leftover in the bottom of the tank, they can easily move enough substrate to expose the roots.

Bottom feeders aren’t necessarily interested in eating the pant. Larger-bodied fish can even do it by swimming at the bottom of the tank.

Herbivorous Fish

Like mono fish or Buenos Aires tetras, Herbivorous fish can all eat massive amounts of plant matter. As long as the plant roots are not damaged, the plants will grow.

So, anchoring the plants deep in the substrate layer should be enough to keep them alive.

Burrowing fish

Some fish species like to burrow them in the sand or gravel. These are normal behaviors. They can uproot any unanchored plants.

We should anchor the plant before those fish uproot the plants.

First-timers in a planted tank

If we introduce a new fish to our planted tank, sometimes they will tug on the plants. This tugging will happen the fish we add is accustomed to a bare tank.

They will tug the plants out of curiosity, but they’ll treat the plants like other fish once settled in.

Filter position & flow rate

Suppose we put a strong filter with a high flow rate next to our plants. The plants may uproot if they aren’t anchored.

We can use a textured piece of driftwood for anchored the plants. This will protect them from high water flow.

Hey, I am Shuvradeb Biswas a content writer. Fishkeeping is my hobby. There are many problems I faced during my first fishkeeping. So, I made the blog to help new fishkeepers.

1 thought on “How To Anchor Aquarium Plants – 7 Easy Methods”

  1. You have put some awesome information in your blog. It is really helpful for us. If you do not anchor the plants in the aquarium, they will start to float here and there. So, you need to know some effective tricks, you can follow the below steps too:
    Use river rocks or pebbles
    Use sand substrate at the bottom
    Use driftwood or sea rocks
    Use some weights
    Use an adhesive that is not harmful to the fish
    Use plant anchors
    Use a Plastic mesh
    Use terracotta pots
    You can also check my article that may be helpful for you.


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