growing stem plants - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-21-2012, 06:09 PM Thread Starter
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growing stem plants

In many years of keeping fish I have never had much luck getting stem plants to grow. After clipping off about one half inch of the bottom stems, I plant them with or without the lead weight in the gravel. They never seem to root and end up floating about. Yesterday I bought a bunch of Rotala Wallichii which I have never seen before. Like all of the stem plants I have bought it didn't have any roots. Thanks for any suggestions.
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post #2 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-21-2012, 06:16 PM
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I usually plant 3 or 4 stems in the same hole and, most of the time, they take hold and root for me.

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post #3 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-21-2012, 06:23 PM
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What kind of substrate do you have? What do you use to plant them? What stem plants have you tried? I have mostly stem plants in my tank and I have never had any trouble betting them to root. Mine usually root fairly well within a week or so.
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post #4 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-21-2012, 07:49 PM
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What kind of lighting do you have on your tank? If it's just the light that came with the tank, it may not be enough to grow stem plants.


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post #5 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-21-2012, 08:05 PM
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I used to have the same problem you are experiencing, then I started EI dosing and now I can get just about any stem submerged or emersed to grow.
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post #6 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-21-2012, 09:33 PM
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All I have are stem plants. Well i just bought an amazon sword, but my stems have huge roots as I found out when I moved a couple. Wow. They were a little yellow tho so I've started the EI dosing. Maybe they like san jose water ?
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post #7 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-22-2012, 02:09 AM
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I have the same problem. I plant, the bottoms rot, they float. I trim off the bottom, replant, they rot and float. Repeat. After about four or five replantings, they finally root.

A member recently told me to float the plants initially after purchase. Float them until roots develop, then plant....

Frustrating yes, but I like the way stem plants look.

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post #8 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-22-2012, 02:38 AM
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I forgot about that, stem plants are fast growers and they probably do better in a high light/pressurized co2/EI tank. But I'm also sure there have been people on this forum succesfully grow them in low tech setups. Might browse through that low tech section and get an idea for what they are doing.
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post #9 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-22-2012, 06:09 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dmckmc View Post
I have the same problem. I plant, the bottoms rot, they float. I trim off the bottom, replant, they rot and float. Repeat. After about four or five replantings, they finally root.

A member recently told me to float the plants initially after purchase. Float them until roots develop, then plant....

Frustrating yes, but I like the way stem plants look.
This is a nutrient issue. Your missing something the plant needs as far as a fert. Are there any specific stems you tried that did this?? Only other things ive seen cause this is specific water conditions. As well as when you plant them be sure to strip/trim off the leaves about 4 leave nodes up leaving the node. The node is where the roots will grow from. And believe it or not adding a root tab to a area with freshly planted stems can assist with them rooting easier without this issue.

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post #10 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-22-2012, 06:11 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tatersalad View Post
I forgot about that, stem plants are fast growers and they probably do better in a high light/pressurized co2/EI tank. But I'm also sure there have been people on this forum succesfully grow them in low tech setups. Might browse through that low tech section and get an idea for what they are doing.
It can be done with lower light and no co2. Ive got a tank that does it just fine. Also depends on the stem your doing, and what your giving them for nutrients. Thats the big part as most stems like to suck up the nutrients.

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post #11 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-22-2012, 10:37 AM
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I had trouble getting my plants to root in gravel too. Although it can be done. I switched to an Aquarium sand and Flora Max mix and it makes a huge difference.


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post #12 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-22-2012, 10:50 PM
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This is a nutrient issue. Your missing something the plant needs as far as a fert. Are there any specific stems you tried that did this?? Only other things ive seen cause this is specific water conditions. As well as when you plant them be sure to strip/trim off the leaves about 4 leave nodes up leaving the node. The node is where the roots will grow from. And believe it or not adding a root tab to a area with freshly planted stems can assist with them rooting easier without this issue.
I had the problem with amaranth red root or scarlet temple (not sure what I have). Now, they are rooted and doing well.

I had the problem with egeria densa. But so far, after many trimmings, it still will not even produce roots. I've been floating it for two weeks now and other than the tip, all the leaves are thin and transparent, it grows but does not have color.

I have not had any problems with brazilion pennywort or water hyssop. By far, the healthiest plant in my tank is the water hyssop.

Other plants are jungle Val (doing okay) a sword of some type which was doing great until this week (no new growth - normally 1 large leaf weepy) and a annubias Annacaris (new leaves are great but mature leaves brown quickly)

*60g
*Substrate = 50% Florite sand 50% regular Florite
*Lighting 108W of a 216W T5HO Aquatic Life hood 25" from substrate 8.5 hours daily.
*Amarath Redroot, Waterhyssop, Brazilian Pennywort, Water Wisteria, Jungle Val, Moss Ball, Riccia, Nana, Java Lace, Cryptocoryne, Pigmy Chain Sword.
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post #13 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-23-2012, 09:04 AM
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Originally Posted by Dmckmc View Post
I had the problem with amaranth red root or scarlet temple (not sure what I have). Now, they are rooted and doing well.

I had the problem with egeria densa. But so far, after many trimmings, it still will not even produce roots. I've been floating it for two weeks now and other than the tip, all the leaves are thin and transparent, it grows but does not have color.

I have not had any problems with brazilion pennywort or water hyssop. By far, the healthiest plant in my tank is the water hyssop.

Other plants are jungle Val (doing okay) a sword of some type which was doing great until this week (no new growth - normally 1 large leaf weepy) and a annubias Annacaris (new leaves are great but mature leaves brown quickly)

egeria densa Aka Anacharis is more pain to grow planted then floating. Alot of people have plenty of issues with this plant but yet its touted as beginner. Personally I find it finicky and not liking to be planted around many other plants. I can get it to grow but the bottom half always yellows as it seem to do for most. Really have to use some scissors and trim leaves off the stems before planting. They are also heavy nutrient sucking plants.. But most find allowing them to flow they do fine. The instant it goes into the substrate they have issues.

The Jungle val and the swords need to get root tabs under them as they are heavy root feeders for sure.

Your Anubias is what?? Tried to google it didnt come up with anything. Anubias are special in that you have to make sure the Riozome isnt fully burried. It needs to basically have the roots put in the ground half way. Prefer low to medium light. Can root feed and column feed.

Ive got a nice Anubias Barteri thats getting big and even flowers when its happy.

In fact here is a pic of the roots planted for it.. This thing grows crazy. Anubias can do some weird things.



and a Pic of the flower that is on it right now.


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post #14 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-23-2012, 01:37 PM
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I have had my tank set up for over a year now, and though I have had stems "grow" ok in my tank, I have struggled with them not looking like total crap. I have cabomba, wisteria, bacopa (moneywort), and have had some other miscellaneous ones. My cabomba, wisteria and bacopa grow just fine in terms of length and reaching the surface, but they look like total crap. They never grow uniformly, usually just one or two stems stick out like a sore thumb, and when I trim them they never grow "bushy" like people say they should. My wisteria gets holes in the leaves as well.

I have a 24w t5HO with a hardcore reflector about 6" above a 29g tank with no lid. I change the water every week and have experimented with using Rootmedic Liquid ferts regularly. I also use root tabs. Nothing works, and I actually hate the stem plants in my tank because they look so bad.
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post #15 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-23-2012, 02:30 PM
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I can't do stem plants either. I've tried rotala and wisteria and they all just end up wilting away or not rooting in the substrate.

Can never do vals either.
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