Want the appearance of having live plants in your aquarium without the hassle of actually having live plants? Well, now you can with synthetic Pangea plants! Artificial decorations for fish tank aquariums such as pangea plants are synthetically made with high quality and non-toxic material. You may be asking yourself, what is the difference between plastic, silk, and Pangea plants? We will compare the basics-appearance, longevity, maintenance, and designs-of these three types of artificial/synthetic plants. (For the purpose of this blog, we will refer to all artificial plants as synthetic plants.)
There is a noticeable difference between the appearances of these synthetic plants. Plastic plants are hard and stiff with an artificial appearance. The silk plants are made from soft dyed fabric but still have an artificial appearance. They also sway with the water’s movement. Pangea plants are much softer with a realist appearance. Their sway in the water’s movement mimics real plants.
The longevity of the synthetic plants is also different. Silk plants have the shortest life span since they are made from fabric, which breaks down in water resulting in faded and frayed synthetic plants. Plastic plants are more durable, but they tend to eventually fall apart (leaves fall off, separates from the base, etc.) The most durable and lasts numerous years of the synthetic plants are the Pangea plants. Some of the plants are what is known as “seal proof”, meaning the plants are extra durable to sustain the roughness of seals, sea lions, penguins, and otters.
Even though they have difference appearances and longevity, the maintenance of synthetic plants is very similar but with a slight difference. All three may be cleaned with a sponge or gently brushed, if needed. However, the plastic and silk plants are more porous than Pangea plants resulting in the algae being absorbed or attaching itself to the synthetic plant. Harsh chemical agents such as bleach, may be needed to remove the algae. However, Pangea plants do not need harsh chemicals to remove the algae, just use a sponge or a gentle use of a brush.
We just briefly described the appearance, longevity, and maintenance of the synthetic plants. Let’s discuss the designs of plastic, silk, and Pangea plants. Plastic and silk come in a variety of designs and sizes, which everyone is already familiar with. Therefore, we will briefly discuss the species of the three Pangea genus plants-kelp, seaweed/algae, and seagrass.
The species of Pangea kelp include, but not limited to, Dragon kelp, Sea kelp, Bull kelp, Sea Palms, and Dabberlocks. The following are brief descriptions of the kelp in its natural form/habitat and Pangea plant photos of each:
- Dragon Kelp-brown in color with long flowing branches attached to a branch type base. Sometimes seen floating on the surface. Naturally located in the northeastern Pacific Ocean.
- Sea Kelp-also known as Giant Sea Kelp. Usually brown in color with blades protruding from a stem, resembling leaves on a branch. It is used as a food source due to its content of iodine, potassium, and other minerals; sometimes used as a dietary supplement. Naturally located along the California, Washington state, Oregon, Alaska, South America, South Africa, Australia, and New Zealand coastlines.
- Bull Kelp-also known as Bullwhip Kelp. Ribbon like blades protrude from a hollow bulb on the top of the stem. The blades float near the surface of the water to obtain adequate sunlight and to provide protective shelter for young fish and invertebrates. Naturally located from the southern California coastline to the Aleutian Islands coastline.
- Sea Palms-brown in color and resembles a palm tree. They are one of the few species that survive and remain out of the water most of the time. Naturally located on the rocky shores along North America’s western coastline.
- Dabberlocks-yellow-brown in color. It is edible and may be eaten fresh or cooked. Naturally located on rocky shores with severe wave exposure along the far north Atlantic Ocean coastlines.
- Laminaria-also known as Tangle and Devil’s Apron. It is brown in color with long, leathery strips of kelp. Laminaria is a food source, usually consumed after boiling or dried, for the algin, iodine, and mannitol. Naturally located in the northern Atlantic Ocean and the northern Pacific Ocean.
Wow, did not know there were so many types of kelp! Now let’s review the different species of Pangea seaweed/algae. The species of Pangea seaweed/algae include, but not limited to, Laminaria, Bladder Wrack, Green Sea Fingers, Sea Lettuce, Sea Lettuce Gigantean, Spaghetti Algae, and Toothed Wrack. The following are brief descriptions of the seaweed/algae in its natural form/habitat and Pangea plant photos of each.
- Bladder Wrack-also known as Black Tang, Rockweed, Bladder Focus, Sea Oak, Black Tany, Cut Weed, Dyers Focus, Red Focus, and Rock Wrack. It is green, brown, or greenish-brown in color. Anti-aging products and cosmetics use Bladder Wrack to increase the skin’s thickness and elasticity. Naturally located on the coastlines of the North Sea, western Baltic Sea, Atlantic Ocean, and Pacific Ocean.
- Green Sea Fingers-also known as Green Sea Fingers or Dead Man’s Fingers (they hang down from rock during low tide resembling a dead man’s fingers). It is dark green in color. Naturally located in the Pacific Ocean near Japan and along the coastline in the northern Atlantic Ocean.
- Sea Lettuce- also known as Sea Lettuce Gigantean. It is bright green in color and edible alga which resembles lettuce. This type is algae is consumed by both sea animals (such as manatees) and humans. It is high in fiber, soluble dietary fiber, iron, and various vitamins and minerals. Naturally located along the coastlines everywhere around the world.
- Spaghetti Algae-green in color. Does not attach itself to any structures and usually grows tangling itself together. It is used in marine aquariums to remove nutrients, especially nitrates. Naturally located along the coastlines everywhere around the world.
- Toothed Wrack-olive brown in color. England uses Toothed Wrack seaweed in cosmetics to aid in strengthening hair and revitalize skin. It contains an abundant number of vitamins, minerals, and trace elements. Naturally located along the coastlines of the Atlantic Ocean of Europe and north-east America.
Who would have thought algae and seaweed were healthy enough to use as food or cosmetics! Wow! Now onto the final Pangea plant, the seagrass. It includes, but not limited to, Eelgrass, Halophila Stipulacea, Neptune Grass, Shoal Grass, String Grass, Surf Grass, Turtle Grass, Vallisneria Gigantean, and Vallisneria Natans. The following are brief descriptions of the seagrass in its natural form/habitat and Pangea plant photos of each:
- Eelgrass-bright green in color with long, ribbon-like leaves with flowers. Ealgrass are found submerged in muddy or sandy substrate. Naturally located in shallow water along the coastlines everywhere around the world.
- Halophila Stipulacea-green in color. Invasive form of seagrass which grows in various environmental conditions and substrate. It is also important food for green turtles. Naturally located in the Indian Ocean, Mediterranean, and Gulf of Aqaba.
- Neptune Grass-bright green and brown in color. It is a flowering plant with ribbon-like leaves. Neptune Grass plays an important part in the underwater ecosystem. Naturally located in the Mediterranean Sea.
- Shoal Grass-also known as Little Neptune Grass. It is green in color and a colonizer of vegetated areas. Naturally located in the shallow parts along the of some of the warmer oceans in the world.
- String Grass-green or brown in color with long, hollow rope like leaves. Naturally located in marine or brackish waters in the northern hemisphere.
- Surf Grass-green flowering plant with long, flat leaves. The Surf Grass beds are known to increase the water clarity by trapping and stabilizing sediments. Naturally located on the coastlines of western North America.
- Turtle Grass-greenish-white with a touch of pink in color. It is usually a source of food for turtles, herbivorous parrotfish. Surgeonfish, and sea urchins. Naturally located in calm, shallow water in the Caribbean Sea, Gulf of Mexico, and Cape Canaveral, Florida.
- Vallisneria Gigantean-green in color. Genus of a freshwater flowering plant. The white female flower will grow to the surface of the water; while, the male flower will detach from the stalk and float to the surface of the water. Naturally located in the tropical and subtropical regions of Asia, Africa, Europe, and North America.
- Vallisneria Natans-green in color. Similar to the Vallisneria Gigantean in two ways-it is also a freshwater flowering plant and it is naturally located in the tropical and subtropical regions of Asia, Africa, Europe, and North America.
That was a lot information! Now the easiest, shortest, and last topic to review, the base of the Pangea plants. There are three types of bases-disc, suction cup, or anchors. The discs are small and used in sand or gravel substrate. While the suction cups are used when there is little or no substrate; such as marine or quarantine aquariums. Finally, anchors are used to mount plants onto rocks or other decorations. The bases are determined based on the location of the Pangea plants.
Congratulations!! You now have the knowledge to purchase your trend setting Pangea plants. All you have to do is contact Living Color Aquariums; that simple! A Living Color Aquariums trained professional will gladly assist you with any questions you have or assistance in placing your order.
Author: Tessy Weigold