How to Care for a Dwarf Aquarium Lily
You’ve always wanted to put lily pads into your aquarium. Nymphaea (or dwarf aquarium lily) is an interesting option. This easy-to-grow, beautiful species is from India and Southeast Asia. It’s often used as a background or midground plant. Its bulb is a compact bush with 4-inch, arrow-shaped green leaves. Then it eventually grows long stems of lily pads floating at the water’s surface. The dwarf lily is a different kind of green aquarium plant. It has unique textures and interesting colors that range from pinkish-green to reddish-bronze.
How Do You Plant a Dwarf Aquarium Lily?
Aquarium Co-Op will ship a single dwarf aquarium lily bulbs in a protective peat moss package. Because bulbs can often become damaged or melt after they are planted, we do not include any leaves or roots. Remove the bulb and give it a quick rinse in water to wash off any loose dirt. Place the bulb on top of the gravel or substrate in your fish tank without burying it or else the bulb may rot. Some bulbs may float at first, but eventually they become waterlogged enough to sink.
After the bulb starts to sprout leaves, gently place it in the substrate. This prevents the bulb from being moved around by your fish or the water current. Once roots are rooted into the ground, they will anchor the plant.
After the lily sprouts leaves, push the bulb into the substrate.
How long will it take for aquarium bulb bulbs to grow? Try turning the bulb upside down and giving it another one to two weeks to sprout. Although there is a top and a bottom to plant bulbs, we can’t see it until the bulb starts growing leaves toward the surface and roots toward the substrate.
What causes the bulb to become moldy? If organic objects such as driftwood and plant bulbs are submerged, they can develop a biofilm of microorganisms and harmless bacteria. It can appear as white mold, fluffy fungal, or a few tufts of gray hair covering the bulb. The fuzzy layer will be consumed by any algae-eating shrimp, snails, or other aquatic animals in your aquarium. As long as the bulb is firm to the touch and eventually starts sprouting, the biofilm is not dangerous to the lily and doesn’t spread to other plants.
My aquarium lily bulbs won’t sprout if I followed all the instructions. If the bulb has mushy texture and emits foul odor after being touched, then it is unlikely that the bulb is defective. In our experience, we find that less than 5% of bulbs fail to revive, but if this happens to you, the next step would be to contact the fish store or plant seller where you got the plant from. Aquarium Co-Op dwarf lilies can be returned or replaced by emailing our Customer Service. Dwarf aquarium lilies are one of our favorite beginner plants, and we want to make sure you’re successful with them.
Most lilies grow quickly when they are submerged in water. They produce many leaves from one point on the bulb.
How can you take care of a dwarf lily
This tough plant can thrive in tropical temperatures between 72-82degF (22 to 28 degC). It doesn’t need CO2 injection, and can be grown in aquariums with low or high lighting. Once it starts sending lily pads to the top, you may need to prune a few of the surface leaves so that they won’t block light from reaching the other plants in the fish tank.
Dwarf aquarium lilies, like most live aquatic plants, are great for consuming organic waste compounds and improving overall water quality for your fish. Lilies will grow very quickly once they are established in your tank. You may need to supplement their growth with liquid fertilizers or root tabs.
Trim the lily pads, but not all of them, if they cover the entire surface.
Is it possible to propagate a dwarf water lily?
When your dwarf aquarium lily is feeding and growing well, it may begin to send out little shoots with daughter plants attached to them. Simply cut off the side shoots and replant them in a desired location in your fish tank. You may have a problem with your plant’s growth. Take a look at our article on plant nutrients to find out how you can fix it.