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Anubias and ferns generally don't grow fast enough to compete with algae. (I've seen pure Anubias tanks completely overrun with beard algae.) To address this problem, you can combine slow-growers with emergent plants (floating plants, houseplants, etc) in the same tank. However, I would never use a soil layer or deep gravel in this kind of setup. You need fast-growing rooted plants to keep the substrate from going anaerobic and toxic.
Great point, Anubias seems to be a bit of an algae magnet.

I actually forgot this was under the El Natural board when I replied!

So when I said "beginner" I was referring more to the average person who walks into a fish store knowing nothing, wants the cheapest/easiest way to keep some fish alive, and has never considered plants as an option. Ironically, their cheap lighting, cautiously recommended conservative tank stocking, and reluctance to spend money on special substrate or fertilizer actually does a reasonable job of controlling algae, while a little bit of slow plant growth goes a long way to increase their enjoyment of the tank and gives them confidence to explore a little more into the plant side.
 
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