Aquascaping Materials- Make Your Aquascape an Advanced One

Suppose your friend came to you yesterday and he found an aquascape in your room corner. Won’t it make him surprised that how elegantly you are maintaining your house despite having lots of work?

At least, I appreciate them the most who have such a touch of nature in their house. But this praise will be more if you can manage to transform your aquascape from an ordinary one to an advanced one.

Stop! Grab the point as I am here to suggest to you various types of aquascaping materials that can complete your mission of making an advanced aquascape which can also bring you a soothing environment with mental peace.

Aquascaping Materials

If you want to prepare an enriched and advanced aquascape, you must have enough ideas about the tools of aquascaping. Everyone doesn’t need to have the same tools.

But, you should at least have information or knowledge about it so that you can add things according to your taste, the availability of tools around you, and your aesthetic needs.

Though the tools are of different types, they are interconnected to each other. Hence, if you can’t place them properly or you don’t add at least according to their minimum matching, it will hamper your aesthetic look.

For your convenience, I am putting here the general types of aquascaping materials- 

  • Plant species
  • Fish species 
  • Hardscape materials
    • Substrates
    • Driftwoods
    • Rocks or stones

Advanced aquascaping consists of all these materials and all of them are placed in a perfect proportion according to the rules that I have explained in the article Aquascaping Basics. Let’s discuss these materials in detail.

Plant Species for Aquascaping

Before introducing plant species, you should know the role of them in your aquascaping. Plants mainly work as a sign of life here. 

As you know, all aquascaping may not have fish species. If yours is like that, plants are going to be the only living materials here. 

Hence, the plant provides a vibrant and aesthetic look. Also, you should introduce such types of plants that won’t consume huge nutrients that may cause a lack of nutrients for fish.

Well, for this purpose you can think of several types of plant species. Let me mention some for you.

Beginner Plants 

If you are new in this sector or you have just started a new aquascape, you can have such low-requirement plants like 

  • Anubias 
  • Cryptocoryne
  • Blyxa japonica
  • Brazilian pennywort

Intermediary plants

After your beginner plants have improved, you can add some other varieties that can enrich your aquascaping with their beauty. As you are now trained in maintaining aquascapes, you can easily handle them. Such plants are 

  • Alternanthera 
  • Echinodorus
  • Water hedge
  • Floating crystalwort

Advanced plants 

In this case, you will need to take high care of the plants and will need to add fertilizers as they are advanced aquascaping tools. These types of plants are 

  • Utricularia
  • Glossostigma  
  • Java moss
  • Bolbitis heteroclita
  • Hygrophila difformis 
  • HC Cuba
  • Aquarium bonsai

However, there are almost 50 species of plants that are found in regular use in aquascaping worldwide. You can choose any of them according to your needs and varietal combination. 

Fish Species for Aquascaping 

Let’s talk about some fish species now because to make the ecosystem vibrant, you should have some swimming fish along with the plant species.

Some fish species that are commonly used in the aquascaping are-

  • Tetras
  • Betta fish 
  • Angelfish
  • Shrimp
  • Neon tetra
  • Guppy Danio fish

Well, here you should remember some points before introducing a fish species in your aquascape. 

  • The fish should not be aggressive. Aggressive fish can harm plants and other materials.
  • The fish should not be extremely large. Try to bring dwarf species. 
  • Some fish consume food and nutrients devastatingly. Avoid them.
  • Before introducing a fish, research well and get all the information about them if they are suitable for your aquarium or not. 
  • The fish species should be calm so that they can create a good ecosystem with the plants and other elements. 

Hardscape in Aquascaping 

An aquascape remains incomplete if you don’t add any hardscape materials to it. Simply think of your garden. A garden needs some hardy or materialistic things to become fulfilled along with the plants. 

In the same way, you will also need some hardscape materials for the completion of your aquascaping. For this purpose, you can use several items. Let me introduce you to some. 

Substrate for Planted Tanks

Aquascaping researchers believe that substrate is the most important thing for establishing an aquascape. As you know, it is the base of the aquascape. Hence, you should be selective in this case. 

Here is a list of substrate types that you can use in your aquascape-

  • Laterite
  • Aqua soil
  • Clay
  • Akadema
  • Peat
  • Onyx
  • Gravel, sand
  • Limestone
  • Marble

Among them, I like sand or gravel the most. They can hold all the materials firmly due to their coarse texture. Also, you can place other materials easily on this substrate.

But it’s not always mandatory that you have to work with sand. You can think of other substrates also as their availability in your area and your necessity. 

But whatever you take, you have to be conscious of their placement. A thick layer of substrate is to be prepared with care so that the whole aquascape can be placed firmly. 

Driftwood in Aquascaping 

Driftwood is the most favourable part of my aquascape. They create an aesthetic and the most natural look by creating an invisible bond with the plants. 

Whenever I see them, I can feel a seaside view in my house. Some driftwood that I can suggest you are-

  • Malaysian driftwood
  • Cholla wood
  • Manzanita driftwood
  • pacific wood
  • Mopani wood
  • Spider wood

You can use any of them. All the types can be useful for your aquarium. But always try to find hardwood. Softwood won’t be so strong or sturdy.

Softwoods contain a lot of sap and that’s the point where you should avoid this material. As they have to remain underwater, you should concentrate on whether they can remain or not.

If you want, I can suggest a trick to make your aquascaping more aesthetic. You can add two or three small pieces of driftwood to each other by sticking glue to make a more unique creation. 

Stone in Aquascaping 

Here presents another source of attention to aquascaping and that is rocks or stones. Without them, you can’t get the complete natural vibe of aquascaping due to their aesthetic look.

Rocks can be of various types. Some of them are-

  • Mantane stone
  • Black lava 
  • Unzan stone
  • Ryuoh stone
  • Knife stone
  • Grey mountain stone
  • Ohko stone
  • Seiryu stone
  • Prism stone
  • Koke stone

In this case, some hobbyists prefer small stones. They attach the stones to the driftwood and set them on the substrate. 

But if you want my opinion, I prefer medium to large rocks that I place in different parts of my aquascape. Hence, you can take anything according to your choice and need of the aquascape. 

Others Equipment

Apart from the basic elements, you may need some other tools for the maintenance of the aquascape. 

  • A filter– To keep the aquascape water clean and healthy for the well-built ecosystem. The tubes should also be of good quality to ensure the safety of the environment. 
  • Cleaning tools– Aquascaping materials need to be cleaned regularly. That’s why you will need a cleaning brush.
  • Substrate rake for grooming the substrate. 
  • Trimmer for trimming the plants.

Though these are not adjusted to the aquascaping, you need them to maintain that and thus they are related to this fact. 

Also, you have to take great care of your aquascaping for better performance and health of the aquascape materials.


How often should I trim aquarium plants?

Trimming depends on the type of your plants. If the plants are fast-growing, you have to trim them regularly. Otherwise, you can trim it once a month. The look of your aquascaping will determine that. 

Can aquascaping tools be used in different aquariums?

You can do it if you can maintain good sterilization. Otherwise, pathogens may spread with them in the new aquarium. But I suggest avoiding doing this.

Final Words

Finally, I have completed the detailed guide that I wanted to share with you. Choosing aquascaping materials is important as they are the signs of your taste and elegance.

But when you are trying them, you should also be careful that along with beauty, the materials should also be sustainable and well adapted to,,,each other that you have introduced. 

Commonly people make blunders in these spheres. Therefore, if you think that my suggestions will be of your help, you can knock me anytime or you can check my other aquascaping articles for a better explanation. 

Howard Parker

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