Water Sprite (Ceratopteris thalictroides) is an aquatic fern found in many places around the world. It’s often found rooted in muddy areas on the floor of lakes and ponds.
It is a soft leaved green plant with numerous fronds, which make for perfect cover for smaller goldfish and newly hatched fry.
While Water Sprite is usually planted into the substrate of the tank, it can also be left floating freely.
The plant has a fine and delicate root structure and gets its nutrients from the water rather than the substrate. It generally grows to around a foot tall.
Caring for Water Sprite
Water Sprite is an easy-care plant that is among the fastest growing goldfish tank favourites. It needs moderate lighting levels and a pH of around 6.5-7.
The plant is a good choice for the novice goldfish keeper, and is great at removing excess nutrients from the water.
It does not have any special nutritional requirements, but adding a good quality general purpose fertilizer with Co2 to the water will encourage growth and really make your plants thrive.
As the plant reproduces quickly, one specimen can remain viable in the tank for many years.
Keeping Water Sprite with goldfish
This plant’s soft leaves are incredibly appealing to the hungry goldfish! Which would be a problem for many other aquarium plants.
However, as the Water Sprite grows and reproduces at an impressive rate, the plant is more than capable of keeping up with demand. That is, unless you have only one small specimen and lots of hungry fish!
Where to buy it
Water Sprite is one of the easiest goldfish tank plants to find for sale. It can be found in pet shops, specialist aquarium retailers, and water garden centers. You can also order online for delivery to your door.
Try to select a medium sized plant rather than a small one.
Alternatively, consider buying three or four plants to get you started. This will give them a chance to grow and reproduce before your goldfish eat them all!