Horizontal growth in Stem Plants? - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 15 (permalink) Old 07-07-2006, 12:22 PM Thread Starter
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Horizontal growth in Stem Plants?

http://flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/183992557/
This plant added 12" vertical growth in a month and then decided to go horizontal. I *think* this coincided with my switching the 2x65W CF with a 2x96W fixture.

1. Is the plant saying "too much light?"
2. Can you ID it?
3. Would you let it go? Prune it back to the vertical growth? Prune it back farther?
You can breeze through my Flickr set to see what I've got going in that tank -- I'm OK with a "jungle look" at the moment.

Thanks for any advice!

Oh and also: The Amazon swords are all adding new growth in the form of long, slender leaves instead of fat ovals. Does that also mean they're getting high light?


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post #2 of 15 (permalink) Old 07-07-2006, 01:26 PM
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How long have your swords been in the tank? Many are grown emersed and will lose those leaves in a tank. New leaves are usually completely different from the original emergent leaves.

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post #3 of 15 (permalink) Old 07-07-2006, 01:48 PM Thread Starter
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The tank is 2 months old. The swords were old enough when I bought them to have long runners with baby swordlets growing at the LFS, although it seems most of the large original leaves got brittle and started dying after I got them home (you can see it in my avatar) and were replaced with this new growth.


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post #4 of 15 (permalink) Old 07-07-2006, 02:22 PM
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The plant looks a lot like my rotala indica (rotundifolia). Profiled here. Mine also gives a lot of horizontal growth near the tops of the stems. I believe it is due to the high light. I have a bit over 3WPG equivalent on my 72.

Kevin

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post #5 of 15 (permalink) Old 07-07-2006, 03:15 PM
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Different plants react to high light in different ways. Some say "Wow! That's a lot of light! I don't need to stretch to reach it!" and grow horizontally. Others will say "Wow! That's a lot of light! I must get there as quickly as possible!" and will grow taller faster (and leggier, completely opposite from what a terrestrial gardener would expect.) Although to be honest I've not seen any in my limited experience to go up and then sideways. I suspect it's as Kevin suggested. Apparently they hit a light ceiling .

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post #6 of 15 (permalink) Old 07-07-2006, 03:23 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KevinC
The plant looks a lot like my rotala indica (rotundifolia). Profiled here. Mine also gives a lot of horizontal growth near the tops of the stems.
So do you let it go? I'm curious what it looks like when you have a large stand of it. Maybe a little worried about it shading out the lower plants. The original bunch has also split off new stems under the gravel so we'll see how those react now.

A "light ceiling" describes it perfectly, Cindy!


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post #7 of 15 (permalink) Old 07-07-2006, 05:17 PM
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I'm with Tinngg here... Seems like you had bought emersely grown swords there. They do make stalks with babies emersed too.

The new growth looks a lot like that of E. amazonicus - the Narrow-leaf Amazon sword... but the emersed leaves... My emersed amazonicus doesn't look much like that... hmm...
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post #8 of 15 (permalink) Old 07-07-2006, 07:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by relaxing
So do you let it go? I'm curious what it looks like when you have a large stand of it. Maybe a little worried about it shading out the lower plants. The original bunch has also split off new stems under the gravel so we'll see how those react now.

A "light ceiling" describes it perfectly, Cindy!
I've only had mine in the tank for 6 weeks, so I can't really say. I've been thinking about cutting it back just below the horizontal - replanting the tops and leaving the bottom to fill in . . . FWIW my other stems have also done this (red ludwigia most recently).

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post #9 of 15 (permalink) Old 07-07-2006, 07:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KevinC
The plant looks a lot like my rotala indica (rotundifolia). Profiled here. Mine also gives a lot of horizontal growth near the tops of the stems. I believe it is due to the high light. I have a bit over 3WPG equivalent on my 72.

Kevin
I disagree...I don't think they hit a Ceiling...not at only 3WPG. I have a 75 gallon with 5.12 WPG and the rotala grown strait up till it hits the top of the water...THEN it grows sideways across the top of the tank (cause there's no where else to go). So I don't think that would be his problem. I had around 3WPG before and that's when it grew across the bottom of the tank...covering and mixing with my glosso...but when I added more light it finally started growing up.
It's as if the plant is trying to get more light by laying over on it's side...as apposed to less light by simply putting the top most leaves higher to the surface. Seems backwards to logic, but that's what it looks like. either way at over 5WPG mine grows better now than it did at a lower level.

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post #10 of 15 (permalink) Old 07-07-2006, 08:21 PM
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yah, its rotundifolia maybe even the green ver. hard to tell with the pics, but the plant itself is hard to grow vertical. imo i kinda like how it grows horizontal when it fills in. i think it depends on how you dose and how long the photoperiod goes on. hoping someone can elaborate more on the dosing for vertical growth.

i would keep it. the plant is very easy to grow. you'll find it being the biggest weed in your tank

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post #11 of 15 (permalink) Old 07-08-2006, 02:03 AM Thread Starter
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thanks for the ID, most articles show the red variety so that was throwing me off.
right now the biggest weed is the brazillian pennywort! that was growing across the top of the tank and wouldn't stay rooted in the gravel until I pruned off pieces to replant in this tank and a 10g I'm starting up.


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post #12 of 15 (permalink) Old 07-08-2006, 04:27 PM
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Relaxing, your tank is a 56T? Who's the manufacturer of that tank if I may ask? I've been trying to find the dimensions without any luck.

Sláinte!
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post #13 of 15 (permalink) Old 07-08-2006, 05:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by relaxing
thanks for the ID, most articles show the red variety so that was throwing me off.
right now the biggest weed is the brazillian pennywort! that was growing across the top of the tank and wouldn't stay rooted in the gravel until I pruned off pieces to replant in this tank and a 10g I'm starting up.
Yeah the Hydrocotyle leucocephala is a great algae buster, but you will have to top trim it every week they grow so fast. Nice looking plants and that's about the right amount of light for a medium light fast growing tank,IMO.

Some plants will definately grow sideways as a groundcover if they have plenty of light. Sunset or Green Hygro comes to mind.
I'd just let your Rotalla indica grow out a while and color up. And other plants exibit sideways and twisting behavior. Such as Limnophila aromatica sometimes likes to twist and grow curling out at an angle, or Rotala sp. Goias creeps across the floor and has buds that grow up a bit. Here is a pic of the goias.

http://www.aquaticplantcentral.com/f...talagoias2.jpg





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post #14 of 15 (permalink) Old 07-08-2006, 05:58 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RoseHawke
Relaxing, your tank is a 56T? Who's the manufacturer of that tank if I may ask? I've been trying to find the dimensions without any luck.
Perfecto Mfg. It's 30x18x24.


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post #15 of 15 (permalink) Old 07-08-2006, 06:40 PM
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*sigh* No wonder I can't find the specs . Perfecto's website has been "under construction" for at least the past year! I was at one point considerng their 120 for my next tank so I know this for a fact. Will probably go with an AGA 125 instead as I decided I didn't want to deal with the extra height.

Thanks for the info .

Sláinte!
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