For anyhow who enjoys aquariums and fish I want to recommend the pothos vine as a no effort aquarium plant. I think we’ve all been there, standing in the pet store, dreaming of an underwater garden for our fine gilled friends. Sadly most aquarium plants are ridiculously overpriced, even at garden store rates, a thimble of aquatic moss for $5.00, give me a break!
Now for anyone who hasn’t grown an Epipremnum (Pothos Vine, Devil’s Ivy) This is a great plant for everyone. They’re virtually impossible to kill, grow in full sun, to full shade, and need relatively little care. What makes them even greater is how easy they are to propagate. Cut off any piece of vine with a growing tip, bury in good soil or in this case place it in an aquarium and it will grow roots within a matter of weeks.
Betta fish swimming happily amongst pathos vine roots
Although I’ve heard rumors that this plant is poisonous to people, cats and dogs, my fish seem not be bothered. The verdict online is pretty 50/50 on this one so I say try it at your own risk. I will on the other hand let you know that I’ve had pothos vines (2 different varieties) in my aquariums for over a year now and haven’t seen even the slightest sign of sickness in my little fishies. It was as simple as cutting a piece off the main plant, washing it well in the sink to remove any possible pesticides/dust and dropping it in my fish tank. Within a couple weeks you’ll begin to see water roots, and in months the vine will most likely be thriving. Occasionally a leaf might fall off and begin to rot, remove it from the water and carry on with your life. My plants live almost completely submerged and in time grow out of the tank entirely by their own.
Large Established root system of my aquarium pothos vine (1 year old from cutting)
Benefits to plants in a fish tank.
Aeration – Plants create a lot more air then an air stone or filtration system, think of where your fish originate in the wild. Air comes from plants!
Filtration – As the fish produce waste deadly chemicals can sometimes build up in your aquarium and begin to poison your fish. With a planted aquarium your plants will use your fish’s waste as a natural fertilizer and help clean the water.
Homes and Protection – By making your tank a lot more like their natural environment fish are less stress and in turn much healthier. Last year my white cloud minnows used my pothos vine as a hatchery for breeding and a month later the popular jumped by 300%.
My fire bellied newts love to lounge in the pothos vine, which mimic a bit of a lily pad effect for them to sit on right underneath the water.