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Do you discard the dying parts of anacharis?

Ben Rhau

Member
I'm not much of plant guy, so please bear with me.

I have a planted tank with anacharis, anubias, java fern, java moss and pellia moss. Since these are all really easy plants, everything is growing like crazy. But I have a question about the anacharis that I have with all long stem plants (e.g, foxtails, etc.):

Since the new growth is always at the top, I can propagate from there, but the older part of the plant at the bottom invariably starts to yellow and die off, usually with healthy plants sprouting off the sides. Aesthetically, I prefer having all green plants, but if I am always getting rid of the older plant, I'd need to establish new roots from a cutting every time (with some risk the cutting also dies). Is there any reason to do this, or should I just leave the plant alone and let it take care of itself? I understand these plants can float, but I also like having plants anchored to break line of sight.
 

dw1305

Well-Known Member
5 Year Member
Hi all,
......I have a planted tank with anacharis, anubias, java fern, java moss and pellia moss. Since these are all really easy plants, everything is growing like crazy. But I have a question about the anacharis that I have with all long stem plants (e.g, foxtails, etc.):

Since the new growth is always at the top, I can propagate from there, but the older part of the plant at the bottom invariably starts to yellow and die off, usually with healthy plants sprouting off the sides. Aesthetically, I prefer having all green plants...... I understand these plants can float, but I also like having plants anchored to break line of sight.
The good thing is that they are all growing.

I would just keep re-planting the tops and side shoots of the Anacharis (Egeria densa), they will re-root really easily.

Foxtail (Ceratophyllum demersum) doesn't ever have any roots, so it is best as a sub-surface floater, just keep pinching off the older stems as they yellow and /or become bare.

I'm like @Linus_Cello got fed up with pruning all the different stem plants, so now I just use floating plants and a sub-surface floater (Ceratophyllum and/or Ceratopteris). I only have slow growing, very shade tolerant, planted plants (nearly all Cryptocoryne spp.).

The rest of the plants I have are "epiphytes", Anubias barteri, Bolbitis heudelotii and various mosses. None of these are fastened to wood or rocks any more and they just grow in a big tangled mass.

cheers Darrel
 

Ben Rhau

Member
Darrel,

Thanks for your suggestions. Since I just have the one tank, I don't mind replanting, and I do like how the rosette shape of the anacharis contrasts with the leaf shapes of the other plants. I do have another question though:

From the Hovanec article on aquatic plants, it seems that at minimum you need plants with roots in the substrate for oxygen transport. i.e., it appears necessary, but not sufficient. The plants I listed above don't have much in the way of roots. The anubias, java fern and anacharis all do to an extent, but only because I've buried them there to anchor them to the bottom of the tank. (I was careful to expose the anubias rhizome.) The roots are not seeking substrate. Given that my substrate is fine sand, is it critical for me to add more planted plants?

To benefit the subsrate, I added about half a dozen MTS last week, but I'm not sure how well they'll thrive in soft, acidic water. When I kept Malawis, the population exploded nearly immediately. I don't see much of the snails yet.

Thanks,
Ben
 

dw1305

Well-Known Member
5 Year Member
Hi all,
From the Hovanec article on aquatic plants, it seems that at minimum you need plants with roots in the substrate for oxygen transport. i.e., it appears necessary, but not sufficient. The plants I listed above don't have much in the way of roots. The anubias, java fern and anacharis all do to an extent, but only because I've buried them there to anchor them to the bottom of the tank. (I was careful to expose the anubias rhizome.) The roots are not seeking substrate. Given that my substrate is fine sand, is it critical for me to add more planted plants?
There are quite a lot of variables, and it definitely isn't essential, but I probably would try some rooted rosette plants.

I like Cryptocoryne as my smaller rooted plant, if I had a deeper substrate then Echinodorus might be better. I used to grow E. bleheri, it is a great plant, but too big really for a 2' tank. Helanthium (Echinodorus) tenellum is another <"good plant">.

The Cryptocoryne spp. that have survived longest for me are C. x willisii, C. wendtii and C. "pontederiifolia". The last one (pictured) is a bit bigger than the other two, and has a pretty chunky root system.



cheers Darrel
 
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