How to Use Weeping Moss
Aquascape enthusiasts know that the aesthetics of their aquarium is accomplished not only by the fish they keep but also in the habitat they build, and greenery such as weeping moss brings both beauty and beneficial attributes to the tank.
An aquarium is not a complete habitat without plant life. Plants provide oxygen, a source of food, a safe haven and beauty. And, considering there is no physical body of water that is without plant life, having greens in the aquarium makes an environmentally balanced habitat for the fish. While aquariums without plants can certainly be successful, there are distinct and noticeable differences in the fish that live in tanks that include live greens. Brighter and stronger coloration will be seen in the rainbow exotics, and fish will seem more comfortable and live a more natural life in a habitat which is more akin to their natural environments.
Introducing plants to the aquarium offers a great many choices for the aquarist. There are tall plants used to disguise filters and tubes. Specimen plants bring the focus to the center of the aquarium with their decorative appearances, while floating plants offer fry a safe haven from the cannibalistic behaviors of their elders. Different varieties of plants offer a diverse look that can bring great interest to the tank, so combining a number of plants may be the best course of action. One plant that adds a lovely, graceful touch and offers food, oxygen and a hiding place for fish is called Vesicularia ferriei or, more commonly, weeping moss.
Vesicularia ferriei is considered to be an aquarium moss. It has become one of the most sought after of aquarium plants because of its unique and simplistic beauty. A plant with a light, bright green color, this moss exhibits a growth pattern similar to the weeping willow tree with graceful fronds that sway softly with the motion of the water. The slow growth makes it a manageable plant in the tank.
All aquatic plants require varying degrees of light, depending on their species. Vesicularia ferriei is no exception, with medium light requirements. It actually has best results with more light than less. The moss is considered to be an easy plant to grow and maintain, although its delicate fronds tend to trap debris and may need to be cleaned periodically if the water is not kept as clean as possible. As with most aquatic plants, dirty or cloudy water can be detrimental to the growth and health of the moss.
It is believed that weeping moss has its origins in Asia, but it does quite well in any situation where all of its needs are met. Finding this moss may prove to be difficult as it can tend to be harder to locate a dealer. Thanks to its hardiness and longevity, once it is found it will have a long life in your aquarium. Propagating the plant through cuttings will help to increase your moss population.
How to display
Moss can be displayed in your tank in a variety of ways to enhance the visual appeal. Those who are interested in shrimp and moss habitats may wish to use their Vesicularia ferriei as the focal point by anchoring it in the center of the aquarium. This also allows the shrimps to weave their way in and out of the foliage in the same manner as in the wild. Allowing some of the moss to float will allow a safe place for the fry to live without fear of being eaten. Perhaps the most common method of displaying the moss, however, is by attaching it to intricate pieces of driftwood. Pieces of fishing line or rock to which the moss is tied also provide an adequate means.
Aquarists know that a completely successful tank habitat possesses not only the lovely and exotic fish but also the visual appeal and benefits offered through live plants. Weeping moss is an increasingly popular choice to acquire this aesthetic appeal of their aquarium.