Recently I just tossed my hygros out, the leaves kept dying and breaking off littering my tank with decaying leaves. So I'm in the mood to shop for replacement plants for my background. Something narrow. Thinking of some java ferns and maybe some time of val. Anyone have any suggestions of what I should get?
Depending on their availability in your area, Isoetes japonica and Isoetes lacustris (commonly known as quillwort) both make excellent background plants in medium to tall tanks. They are easy to care for (requiring very little in the way of pruning), grow slowly even under medium to high light, do not need CO2 supplementation, have a striking bright green coloration, and put out very unique looking, rigidly vertical, tightly bunched shoots of needle-like leaves. I. japonica and I. lacustris look very nearly identical so either one would fit the bill.
I know that Robert at www.aquabotanic.com regularly carries I. lacustris and sells it for a very reasonable price.