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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
In your tank what do you do? Do you bunch the plants together or not? How do you keep them down. Also what plants do better bunched and which dont?

The reason Im asking is because I have Sunset Hygro, Moneywort, and Hydro cotyle and I am not sure how I should plant these. I am willing to go in and revamp the whole tank but want opinions.
 

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I seem to recall starting off bunching many of my stems, especially the smaller, harder to plant ones (e.g. H. micranthemoids (aka pearlweed)). But, after hearing enough seasoned veterans say that you really need to plant individual stems, I've switched over.

There are still a couple exceptions for me, however, I still like bunching some of the bushy looking, short leaved stems (e.g. R. wallichii and Mayaca fluv....(sp?)).

Actually, up until recently, I used to always try to keep individual stems growing straight up, and I used to frequently use plant weights on individual stems. I'm now trying to 'bush' my stems, but topping them, letting the tops sprout and then topping the toppings. Can't say I'm any good at it yet, but that's the current goal.
 

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I bunch 2 or 3 stem plants together and wrap a piece of lead weight around them, loosely to hold them down, the push them deep into the substrate. If I have slower growing stem plants, and I have a few, I usually plant them separately, usually without a lead weight, just pushing them well down into the substrate. You can just loosely wrap a small lead weight around a stem and lay it on the substrate - it grows just about as well.
 

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Just a suggestion on keeping the stems down. Near the bottom, lead some portion of the leaves still attached to the stem. Push the stem (using long handled tweezers...a much in my opinion :biggrin: ) into the substrate making sure the leaf portion 'anchors' get buried. It makes it a tad tougher for the stems to pull back out.

Good luck! After a bit of practice, it'll get easier. Promise :)!
 

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I pretty much do what Hoppy does. I bunch about 2-3 good-sized stems together with "lead" weights and plop them in the tank. I got tired of uprooting each individual stem and trimming. This is quicker and less invasive IMO. Stem plants will form roots even if weighted on top of the substrate. If the weights are unslightly, you can just push them right into the substrate. Now the individual bunches are spaced out just a tad so that enough light gets to all the stems.
 

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I plant stems individually. They seem to do better that way and I don't have to worry as much about light not reaching the lower parts of the stem.
 

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Having sand also helps. Not the very fine sand, but coarse sand like my tahitian moon sand. My stems of rotala if stripped of leaves and pushed about 1 to 2 inches deep will stay planted. That is unless you have fish that like to uproot them.
 

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every new plant I get I plant separated in order to determine if and where the plant is likely to branch off it's main stem in my tank and light. if the plant does not branch much, then I replant it in a bunch. if it branches off a lot, I keep the main stems separate from each other. keep in mind many stems won't branch off till they are much closer to the light, so it's important to allow any new stems plenty of time to grow up tall before making this determination.
 
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