Banana Leaves are an excellent naturalistic decoration, food source, and herbal disease preventative for the freshwater aquarium!
Banana Leaves are ideal leaf litter for blackwater tanks as well as many other setups, providing shelter to fry and small species of shrimp, crabs, crayfish, snails, and fish while maintaining a natural look in the aquarium. They also serve as an ideal growth medium for biofilm and diatoms, both of which are key food sources to countless aquatic animal species, including shrimp and other invertebrates as well as fish.
Banana Leaves also have buffering qualities. As they decompose, they release tannins (tercatin, punicalin, punicalagin) that lower the pH of the aquarium, but at a gradual rate. This is particularly beneficial for aquatic animals that require acidic, low-pH water. Banana Leaves can also be used sparingly in high-pH setups as well, especially when their pH-lowering quality is counteracted with pH-raising décor such as lace rock and dried coral.
Banana Leaves have extremely valuable therapeutic qualities and can often serve as a harmless preventative medicine in the aquarium. They are highly antibacterial and antifungal and support or increase slime coat, scale, and shell production in fish and invertebrates. This is particularly crucial during the introduction and acclimation of animals to the aquarium and after water changes. Banana Leaves also enrich the aquarium water with organic compounds that are beneficial to fish that live in still, stagnant waters such as bettas.
Our Banana Leaves are sourced from 100% pesticide and chemical-free areas and are safe to add directly to the aquarium. These leaves can be allowed to be fully eaten or decompose in the aquarium, then the stem can be removed. We recommend that they be added sparingly at first in order to ensure no drastic changes in water parameters or excessive tanning of water.
Leaf size ranges from 4- 8 inches (10 - 20 cm) with knots.
Therapeutic Dosage: The effects of 1 leaf per 2.5 - 4 gallons (10-15 L) of aquarium water will last for 2-3 weeks. For more intense treatment, use 1-2 leaves per 1.3 gallons (5 L) of aquarium water.
If you are looking for other botanicals, we offer a variety of other natural leaf litter for your aquarium.