Why Grow Aquatic Plants?
Aquatic plants, also known as Hydrophytes, grow and survive in freshwater, brackish water or saltwater bodies. They are the lifeline of water bodies. They consume toxic elements and provide oxygenated water for animals. They are of three types:
1. Submerged plants
2. Floating plants
3. Emergent plants
Submerged plants are totally grown under water. They consume nutrients from water and anchor themselves to the bottom soil or any other media such as rocks or wood.
Floating plants consist of two parts. The upper part is above water and the root is under water. These plants do not attach themselves to the bottom soil and float freely on the water surface. They consume nutrients from water and Carbon from the atmosphere.
These plants grow above water and their roots attach to the soil under water. Most of these plants are root feeders and consume nutrients through roots.
Submerged Aquatic plants can live underwater. Leaves of these plants are without Xylem and Stomata. These plants are also kept in freshwater aquariums and ponds. Growing aquatic plants in aquarium is easy; they add a filtration system in the aquarium; they have the ability to remove fish waster; they absorb Nitrates from the water.
Advantage of keeping Aquatic Plants in an Aquarium
They consume the toxic chemicals from the aquarium water. Elements like Nitrate, phosphate etc. is toxic for fishes but nutrients for plants.
Fish release Carbon Dioxide into aquarium water. Plants take carbon and release Oxygen in aquarium. All the fishes/invertebrates consume Oxygen.
They provide natural hiding places to fish fry and shy fishes/invertebrates.
The plants provide additional surface area to provide beneficial bacteria. They consume all the waste, decaying materials etc and improve the water quality. In other words they play the role of chemical filtration.
Some fishes are territorial. Plants provide them safety and their own territory.
Some fishes lay eggs on leaf surfaces.
Live aquatic plants recreate a natural habitat in the aquarium and prevent the growth of nascence algae in the aquarium.
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