10 Best Plants for Betta Fish To Improve Quality Of Life

10 Best Plants for Betta Fish To Improve Quality Of Life
10 Best Plants for Betta Fish To Improve Quality Of Life


Plants for betta fish provide many benefits that can greatly enhance your betta’s quality of life and reduce stress. Plants help recreate the natural environment that bettas originate from in Southeast Asia. The heavily vegetated rice paddies and shallow waters bettas come from are very different from the small, artificial tanks most bettas are kept in today. Providing lush greenery helps make bettas feel more secure and comfortable in what would otherwise be an unnatural environment for them. Live plants also give bettas more enrichment, mental stimulation, and places to explore and hide.

An aquarium filled with plants has been shown to lower stress and aggression in betta fish compared to bare tanks. The restorative effects and tranquility of living plants can promote positive behaviors and activity levels. Overall, incorporating live aquarium plants greatly improves betta health and happiness by reducing stress and making them feel more at home. In this article, BettaFishy finds out the best plants for betta fish and states more clearly the benefits that plants can create for your betta fish.

The Benefits of Plants for Betta Fish

The Benefits of Plants for Betta Fish
The Benefits of Plants for Betta Fish

Provide Security

In their natural habitat, betta fish live in rice paddies and slow moving streams with very dense vegetation. The thick plants and roots provide ample hiding spots where bettas can retreat if they feel threatened. Having this vegetation is key to reducing stress and aggression in bettas.

When setting up an aquarium for your betta, it’s important to recreate some of that heavily planted environment. Live plants help bettas feel more secure by breaking up sight lines and giving them places to hide. This appeals to their natural instinct to remain concealed from predators or rival males.

Aquariums with ample foliage and plants allow bettas to relax and display more natural behaviors. The plants essentially create a “comfort zone” that reduces flaring and aggression issues. Studies have shown that bettas in planted tanks are less stressed and live longer lives.

Some easy tall background plants to provide security are Amazon Swords, Java Fern and Hornwort. Floating plants like Frogbit also offer overhead cover. A tank densely planted with live plants caters to a betta’s natural habitat and personality.

Improve Water Quality

One of the best reasons to add live plants to a betta tank is that they help keep the water clean and healthy. Plants act as natural filters by absorbing toxic compounds from the water like ammonia, nitrites, and carbon dioxide. Aquarium plants are very good at absorbing nitrates.

Aquatic plants also create oxygen through photosynthesis and help establish the nitrogen cycle in the tank. As noted on Alsip Nursery’s website, “Live plants provide a unique filtration system that is able to remove carbon dioxide, ammonia, nitrates, fish waste, and decaying matter from the habitat.” This makes the water safer and healthier for betta fish.

By improving water quality and oxygenation, live plants promote good health and boost the immune systems of betta fish. Owners who add aquatic plants often see less issues with fin rot, eye cloudiness, and other diseases associated with poor water conditions.

Reduce stress for fish 

While betta fish enjoy calmer spots for resting, plant life can provide exciting areas for them to explore and interact with. Plants with different textures give bettas stimulation and activity. Floating plants like frogbit or duckweed have round leaves that move in the current and that bettas can push around. Plants with large leaves such as amazon sword or anubias offer places for bettas to rest under or weave through. Fronds from ferns like java fern gently sway in the water, captivating curious bettas. Having multiple types of live plants can create an enriched environment for betta fish to play and explore.

Top 10 Best Plants for Betta Fish. 

Easy-care Plants for a Thriving Betta Tank

Breathe new life into your betta’s world with these five low-maintenance plants! Perfect for beginners, these beauties will add vibrancy and functionality to your aquarium without demanding constant attention.

1. Anubias nana petite

Anubias nana petite
Anubias nana petite

This little gem thrives in low light, slowly spreading its lush, emerald leaves like a miniature forest floor. Ideal for beginners, it requires minimal trimming and thrives with just weekly water changes. Plus, its compact size makes it perfect for smaller tanks.

2. Java moss

This versatile wonder can be anchored, floated, or even attached to driftwood, offering endless aquascaping possibilities. Its feathery fronds provide essential hiding spots for shy bettas, while also filtering the water and competing with algae for nutrients. Simply trim back any excess moss for continued growth.

3. Water wisteria

Watch your tank transform with this fast-growing beauty! Its vibrant green stems and delicate leaves not only add visual interest, but also help consume excess nutrients, reducing the risk of algae blooms. This champion thrives in a variety of lighting conditions and requires minimal pruning, making it a low-key hero for any tank.

4. Duckweed

Don’t let the name fool you, this floating plant is a friend to bettas! Its tiny leaves provide dappled shade, perfect for light-sensitive fish, and also act as a nitrogen sink, keeping your water healthy. Easy to remove if it gets too enthusiastic, duckweed offers a touch of whimsy and a natural filtration boost.

5. Cryptocoryne wendtii

This stunner comes in a variety of shapes and colors, from deep green spirals to vibrant bronze hues. It tolerates low light like a champ, making it ideal for dimly lit tanks. Plus, its dense foliage provides hiding spaces and a natural feel for your betta to explore. Just remember, Cryptocoryne wendtii prefers a stable environment, so avoid frequent water changes and redecorating.

With these easy-care plants, you can create a thriving betta paradise that’s both beautiful and low-maintenance. So, let your creativity flow, experiment with different combinations, and watch your betta blossom in a vibrant, plant-filled haven!

Plants That Are Neither too Simple Nor too Complicated to Care for

Ready to take your aquascaping to the next level? These five moderate-care plants offer a stunning visual reward for your efforts. They’ll add depth, color, and personality to your betta’s home, while still being manageable for hobbyists of all experience levels.

1. Amazon Swords

Imagine a verdant jungle emerging from your tank! Amazon Swords boast lush, broad leaves that sway gracefully in the current. They add height and dramatic flair, making them a favorite for aquascapers. While they prefer moderate light and nutrients, they’re generally forgiving and adapt well to most conditions.

2. Red Tiger Lotus

Red Tiger Lotus
Red Tiger Lotus

No aquarium is complete without a touch of drama, and the Red Tiger Lotus delivers! This beauty boasts vibrant red flowers that emerge from its glossy green leaves, adding a vibrant pop of color. It needs moderate light and nutrient levels to flourish, but its stunning blooms are worth the extra effort.

3. Water Sprite

This fast-growing stem plant is a beginner’s dream! Its delicate, feathery leaves provide hiding spots for shy bettas and help oxygenate the water. Water Sprite thrives in various lighting conditions and readily absorbs excess nutrients, making it a low-maintenance champion. Watch it gracefully dance in the current as it adds lushness to your tank.

4. Cardinalis

Looking for a splash of color? Look no further than Cardinalis! This plant’s vibrant red leaves add a fiery touch to any aquascape. It prefers moderate light and nutrient levels, but its low growth rate makes it manageable even for busy hobbyists. Just remember to provide adequate space for it to spread and showcase its stunning foliage.

5. Dwarf Hairgrass

Crave a natural, carpet-like effect? Dwarf Hairgrass is your answer! This petite plant forms a lush green blanket across the substrate, creating a stunning visual contrast. While it needs good lighting to thrive, it’s low in nutrient demands and requires minimal intervention. Watch your betta glide effortlessly over its soft, emerald expanse.

Plant Selection and Care Tips

Live plants are more than just pretty decor for your betta fish. They’re essential allies, improving water quality, offering hiding spots, and fostering a natural, stimulating environment. But choosing the right plants and caring for them can seem daunting. Fear not, fellow fish enthusiasts! This guide will equip you with the knowledge to create a thriving, plant-filled haven for your finned friend.

Choosing the Right Plants:

  • Tank Size: Consider your aquarium’s dimensions. Tall plants like Amazon swords might overpower a smaller tank, while delicate species like dwarf hairgrass can get lost in a large one.
  • Light Intensity: Different plants have different light needs. Low-light options like Anubias nana thrive in dimly lit tanks, while Cardinalis and Red Tiger Lotus require more intense light for optimal growth.
  • Betta’s Temperament: Some bettas are fin nippers, and delicate plants like water sprite might be better off in a separate tank. Opt for sturdy plants like Java moss or Cryptocoryne wendtii if you have a feisty fin-nipper.

Planting and Anchoring:

  • Substrate: Many plants, like Amazon swords and Cryptocoryne wendtii, prefer a nutrient-rich substrate like aquarium soil. For others like Java moss and Anubias nana, rocks or driftwood provide perfect anchoring points.
  • Planting Techniques: Some plants, like water sprite and dwarf hairgrass, can be simply rooted in the substrate. Others, like Anubias nana, need their rhizomes attached to rocks or driftwood with fishing line or super glue.
  • Maintenance Tips: Regular water changes are crucial for healthy plants. Trim back fast-growing species like water wisteria to prevent them from taking over the tank. Be gentle when removing duckweed, as it can easily spread if not carefully scooped out.

Potential Challenges and Solutions:

  • Melting: Plants like Cryptocoryne wendtii might melt slightly when introduced to a new tank. Don’t panic! This is normal, and they’ll usually recover with stable water parameters.
  • Algae Growth: Fast-growing plants like water wisteria can help combat algae by consuming excess nutrients. However, if algae persists, consider adjusting your lighting intensity or increasing water changes.
  • Nutrient Deficiencies: Yellowing leaves can indicate a nutrient deficiency. Iron fertilization can benefit Amazon swords, while nutrient-rich substrate is ideal for Red Tiger Lotus.

Remember: Every plant is unique, and observing their behavior is key to understanding their needs. With a little patience and observation, you’ll soon be a plant-whisperer, creating a thriving underwater paradise for your betta to explore and enjoy. So, dive into the world of aquatic plants, unleash your creativity, and watch your betta’s paradise flourish!


In summary, plants for betta fish provide many benefits. Plants help give bettas more security and hiding spots, which reduces stress and makes them feel more comfortable. The plants also help improve water quality by absorbing excess nutrients, producing oxygen, and reducing algae growth. This leads to healthier betta fish.

Plants provide enrichment and mental stimulation for bettas with their natural look and interaction opportunities. Bettas enjoy swimming through and resting on plants. Above are 10 types of best plants for betta fish, from easy to care for to difficult. Easy to care for low light plants like anubias, java fern, and moss balls are great beginner options.


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