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Too many plants? Not enough?

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Sorry for the many posts...but this is truly the best forum out there!

I'm planning out my 2 gallon shrimp nano tank. It's for my office, so I don't want too much upkeep/tending needed...but enough for my shrimp to enjoy themselves. Right now, I plan on getting some plants  online (where I'll get my shrimp) and then attempting to propogate a few from my own tank (to transfer some biofilm)...

"Assorted Moss" on 5 inch Cholla Wood
Anubias nana on 2 inch Driftwood
Red cryptocoryne (bare rooted or potted plant...does it matter?)
Water Wisteria (propogated from my current estbalished tank)
Java Fern tied to some sort of decor (propogated from my current established tank)

Is that too many plants for a 2 gallon tank...or not enough? I was thinknig of a carpeting plant as well(Dwarf Sag or Microsword?), but I made the mistake of overcrowding my first 30 gallon tank and don't want to make the same mistake. Thanks!!

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Wisteria tends to grow fast and need trimming often, I would probably leave it out myself.


for ground cover that does not need much in the way of trimming, perhaps you might consider S Repens.

Java fern  might be a bit overpowering size wise in a 2 gallon and look a bit out of place…

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Thanks for the feedback. I agree that the Water Wisteria in my current tank does require a good amount of trimming/replanting..and then Java fern is pretty large. I planned on repropogating them in the new tank to transfer some biofilm/bacteria, but you're probably right. 

I've heard Moneywort is similar to Water Wisteria? Also, would S Repens require less care than dwarf sag or microsword? 

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The answer would depend on if you want plants as the main filter and oxygen source for shrimp? Or will you use a filter and/or have another source to create surface agitation 


If you will use filter, then I believe there is not really doing it not enough or way too much unless it is an extreme scenario. Because shrimp just climb around and also like dense planting and mosses. They don’t swim much like fish do nonstop, so crowding limiting space with plants does not really cut from potential swimming space. So I believe it is just up to you

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In such a small tank, fewer species is usually better.  Slower growing species can be easier to keep looking good.  Faster growing species like water wisteria would very quickly overwhelm a 2 gallon tank.  Plus the leaves would look huge in that size tank.  Even the Java fern would be really big in that size tank unless you get something like needle leaf or one of the other small varieties.  I’ll attach a pic of my 2 G cube and my 3 G tank.  Both have Anubias nana ‘Petite’.  The 3 G has needle leaf Java fern on the right.  The 2 G cube has Crypt. parva in the foreground and Crypt. jacobsenii in the background with a single Crypt. nurii variety at mid-ground on the right side.  Both these varieties of Crypt would get bigger with more ferts but it’s sooooooo easy to overwhelm such a small tank.

First pic is the 2 G cube (I’ve taken out the frogbit floaters since they were nutrient hogging too much), second is the 3 G (this pic is a bit before I thinned it down and removed about 1/2 of plants).  Last pic is after thinning the 3 G.





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