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Re: Amano Pearl Grass

 N. Frank:

>The plant that was offered at the AGA conference and which Amano gave me
>when I visited him in Niigata __SHOULD NOT__ be called Hemianthus
>micranthemoides. This plant has 2 leaves at each node which alternate in
>direction. It also tends to grow in a more informal manner. 

Hey, Neil!  Isnt this the plant you used to sell for $20.00 - $24.00 for 10
stems on Ebay!?  Heh! Heh!  Most impressive.... till I came along! >:-)

Now, what would you like us ALL to call it?  Perhaps we should call it
Hemianthus Amanocus since Amano gave you your first sprigs of the plant?
Or maybe we should call it Hemianthus Frankus because you brought it to
America and sold it on ebay?  How about Hemianthus Frank-Amanos?:-) Or
didn't Amano identify its species name for you on your trip?  Perhaps it
doesn't have a formal species name 'eh?  I think we'd all prefer to call it
by its Genus-species name that is recognized by all Botanists world wide
and not just by a handfull of obscure aquatic plant hobbyists which BTW Mr.
Frank, we ALL are!
The problem is, I doubt their ARE true Genus and species names that the
world BOTANICAL community recognizes for these plants.

>H. micranthemoides also has 3-4 leaves per node and it too is native to
>America.  It's leaves are similar in size to the other Hemianthus species
>(aka "pearl grass"). Umbrosum has larger leaves unless the plant is starved
>of macronutrients.

Therein lies a problem.  I purchased both these plants (H. micranthemoides
&  H. umbrosum) and the only difference I noticed was evident only opon
purchase...one plant appeared to have bigger leaves than the other. Both
had 3-4 leaves per joint.  So far so good.  However, after growing them
awhile in the same tank, they became indistinguishable from each other!  I
concluded they were both the same plant that were simply grown under
different conditions and did not merit different names at all. 


>I'm not entirely convinced they
>>are different sp.  They could be distinct var. of the same species.  I am
>>willing to accept arguements either way.

N. Frank:

>H.micrantemoides and Amano pearl grass grow very differently WHEN THEY ARE
>IN THE SAME TANK. ALthough they are not necessarily different species, they
>are different enough for an aquatic gardener's purposes.

I think from my perspective, what you are calling H. micrantemoides, I
refer to as "Amano Pearl Grass".  What you are calling Amano Pearl grass, I
call "Babytears".  That's because unless there is a CLEAR, defineable
physical difference b/n the 2-leaf per node Amano Pearl grass and the 3-4
leaf node Babytears.  I have yet to find clear, sustained, consistent
differences that mintain themselves overtime b/n any 3-4 leaved plants that
would let me think they merit different names.

N. Frank:

>Arbitrarily assiging species names to a plant is not good practice and,
>unfortunately contributes to the confusion regarding the identity of
>aquarium plants. 

There isnt a thing "arbitrary" about it!  Since we don't have clear
scientific names to work with, I must rely on CLEAR, sustained visible
differences.  You think there are three sp.  I do not.  Personally, I am
willing to change and accept two names;  H. micrantemoides for the
2-leaf/node "Amano Pearlgrass" and H. umbrosum for the 4-leafed "babytears".

>This has been done by most sellers of aquatic plants over

First off, you wish to impose common names for me to accept.  Dream on.
You cough up Genus and species names recognized by Major Botanical
Publications and recognized by the MAIN community of Botanists and not just
a few hobby rags and THEN you can speak with authority.  Till then frankly
Frank (no pun), I - aint - gots -  t'do - NUTTIN!! >:-)  

I'm actualy hoping you can dig up recognized sp. names for each plant.
However, I doubt you can come up w/ a sp. name for the plant you got from
Japan let alone prove there are three distinct species. 

Substrate Nutrient Injector and DIY Yeast Co2 Diffuser reactor: