How to grow lily pads in an aquarium

Written by jessica geesley
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How to grow lily pads in an aquarium
Dwarf water lilies will fit in an aquarium. (mcmorabad/iStock/Getty Images)

The best way to grow lily pads in an aquarium is to start with the bulbs of dwarf water lilies. Dwarf water lilies are small hardy pond plants that will do well in a cold water tank with goldfish as well as a freshwater tropical tank. They make a great addition to a goldfish tank where the goldfish produce plenty of waste for the lily to use as fertiliser. Dwarf water lilies can produce beautiful pads and help remove toxins, which will help you maintain a clean tank.

Things you need

  • Dwarf water lily bulbs
  • Terra cotta pot
  • Aquarium cover with full spectrum florescent light

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  1. 1

    Drop the dwarf water lily bulb into the aquarium water. It can take one to two weeks for the lily to sprout or longer. If you prefer, bury the lily bulb under the aquarium substrate which will secure the bulb and could speed its growth.

  2. 2

    Plant the sprouting bulb in a small terra cotta pot or another aquarium safe pot if your tank contains plant eating fish or snails. Planting the bulb will also provide room for root growth and will give you a larger plant.

  3. 3

    Install a strong full spectrum florescent light into the aquarium cover. This will speed the growth of the plant. The lillies will grow very slowly under dim aquarium lights and may not form the long shoots that become lily pads.

  4. 4

    Apply powerful light to the aquarium 12 hours a day to increase the chances of the plant forming the blossoms lily pads are known for.

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