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I agree with Catherine on the Duckweed. It is a nuisance and it has taken a lot of consistent effort for me to eliminate it from my tanks (it hitchiked in on some other plants).

Water lettuce has worked well for me, it seems to be a heavy feeder and removes a lot of nutrients from the water column. It helped me get new tanks established without suffering major algae outbreaks. The advantage of this plant, and the others mentioned by Catherine is that it is easy to manage and remove from the aquarium. You can easily thin it out to manage the % of cover it provides between your light and the water. I also like the look of the roots hanging in the water.
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