How to Plant Java Ferns on Rocks: Anubias and Java Fern

How to Plant Anubias or Java Fern on Rocks

Anubias or Java Ferns are excellent options for low-light tanks. Unlike most freshwater plants, they can go in aquariums that feature African Cichlids or Goldfish. These two species of plant are very easy to maintain and require little effort. You can leave them in the pot, attach them to driftwood, or, like we’re doing here in this week’s blog, plant them on aquarium rocks. They are the easiest and most reliable to work with.

This tutorial is also available in video format. Please see the video at bottom.

Gathering Your Supplies

You’ll need:

Anubias and Java Ferns that are about 3″ to 4 inches tall. They can be potted. – Texas holey rock, or any aquarium rock with structure. Super Glue Gel

You want to plant small plants about 3″ – 4 inches high in small plastic pots. The Texas holey rocks are around 5″ – 7″ long. They’re excellent for Cichlid and Goldfish aquariums because they balance the pH and the hardness. You could also use Okho, smooth river rocks or any other porous rock. Other than rocks, you could also use stones or plastic castles. It should be weighted so it stays in place.

To attach, you could use thread, fishing line, or a rubber band to tie. These are not ideal. Super glue gel can be purchased at hardware stores. It is not super thick. The original superglue is preferred. Make sure it has cyanoacrylate, which is a liquid acrylic and the key ingredient. It creates an adhesive bond between the rock and the plant. You are more than welcome to use gloves to prevent your hands from sticking together.

Let’s get started.

Step by Step: Gluing the Plants to the Rocks

1. Open the super glue gel by puncturing the top with the screw-on cap. 2. Get the plant ready to go. The tag should be removed and the plant taken out. 3. Remove as much of the plant rock wool, which is the cotton-like material surrounding the roots. You should get to the root level. You can also use very gently running water to remove it. You can clean the roots by using your hands. Anubias can only be one plant in a container. Java ferns are two or more plants in a pot. 4. Locate the rhizome of the anubias, which is the largest lateral part of the plant between the leaves and the roots. The new growth of tiny, bud-like leaves can be found at one end of your plant. The rhizome is responsible for more leaves. This is where the plant’s rhizome comes in. You can plant it in gravel, but don’t cover its rhizome. 5. Place your plant in the most suitable part of the rock. A natural crevice or dip works well. 6. The plant roots can be dried by using a paper towel, or a hand towel, to rub them. 7. Place a thin layer on the rock that is about twice the length of its rhizome. The super glue gel is great because it stays in place and doesn’t run down the sides of the rocks. 8. Keep the roots and plant’s rhizome horizontally elevated above the rock for at least a minute. Eventually, all these roots are going to grab onto the rock and hold the plant. 9. You can continue this process by finding the next rock and next plant. These water plants dry out quickly, so try to complete them within 10-15 minutes. 10. When they are all dried, put them in your aquarium. They will continue to grow and give you that jungle look over time!