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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Once upon a time I purchased a stem of Tonina Lotus Blossom (1st picture), but the conditions of my tank were not ideal and it melted. After I made some changes and determined that I was ready to try growing this plant again I found this plant at a lower cost on a different site and purchased it. When I received it in the mail it looked like the plant in the second picture.
(For simplicity I'll call the tonina in the 1st pic "Tonina 1" and the other as "Tonina 2"). Although equally beautiful it was not quite the plant I wanted. I went back to the website where I had originally purchased the tonina at the higher price and order a stem but when I received it it looked like the Tonina 2.

I may be wrong, but I'm pretty sure they are different versions of Tonina. From what I recall Tonina 1 grows straight up (unlike Tonina 2 which curve as it grows). The stem in Tonina 1 is thicker. Tonina 2 seemed to have a thinner stem, it curved and the top was bushier. Are they the same plant at different stages of growth? If they are not, then how do I ensure that next time I want to buy Tonina Lotus Blossom I am getting the one in the first picture? Is there a different variation I should be looking for in the name?
 

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According to Wikipedia there is only 1 variety. "Tonina fluviatilis is a plant species in the Eriocaulaceae. It is the sole species in the monotypic genus Tonina...."

Maybe emerged vs submerged growth?
 

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According to Wikipedia there is only 1 variety. "Tonina fluviatilis is a plant species in the Eriocaulaceae. It is the sole species in the monotypic genus Tonina...."

Maybe emerged vs submerged growth?
What she is talking about has to do with local races that have no botanical standing. Variety in the botanical sense is a ranked thing and more substantial.

I unfortunately can't help with the differences in the two as I'm not familiar with all the local Tonina fluviatilis races.
 

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I agree with the above: there is often a lot of genetic diversity within a single species. Just think of humans! If you've ever purchased ludwigia repens from different sources, or wild collected some, you might have noticed what a variable plant it is.


Also worth mentioning that plants will look different in different growing conditions. They can change in color, leaf shape, leaf abundance, stem thickness, bushiness, carpeting proclivity, etc etc etc depending on CO2 levels, light, water parameters, substrate type, temperature, and your horoscope for all I know.
 

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Here is how to tell the "Lotus Blossom" variant from the standard Tonina fluviatilis.
These are the 2 most common and cheapest variants in the hobby. Other variants are rarer and priced higher, so it's likely to be one of the common two.

will the real tonina fluviatilis please stand up?

I can't speak on growth pattern/habits that may be effected by growing conditions -co2/light/ferts/water chemistry. However, from what I have seen, the noted differences in the link above, has held true for all the cases I've seen (same plant growth/traits from different growers).
 

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There are many varieties of the fluviatillis but i agree with above. I think you have the regular version. Lotus blossom is dying out and there needs to be a grower out there to grow it and keep it going. I have not seen in a long time, i know buddies have troubles with it...seeing this i want to source it again myself.
 
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