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I posted a few weeks ago about what appeared to be three or four different
mosses. Now that they have all had time to show enough new growth for
patterns, here's what I've got (and where I got them, if you are
Java Moss .1 - I can occaisionally get this locally, and it is the same as
what is sold at www.azgardens.com. It is generally thread shaped, with
random, short "branches" that are not long enough to change the overall
shape of the moss.
Java Moss .2 - I got this one from www.aquaticplantdepot.com. It looks
somewhat like a cross between Java Moss .1 and Christmas Moss (up next). It
grows in a long "strand" with regular, opposing branches of a uniform
length. The general shape is like stitches...long center piece with lots of
smaller opposing crossing branches.
Christmas Moss - I got this from Loh Kwek Leong. It looks just like the
name implies, a long center strand with crossing strands that are even and
opposing, but that get progressively smaller towards the tip (giving it an
overall triangular shape).
Willow Moss - I got this in an auction, and I can only say what it is based
on what it was called to me, and by comparing it to pictures in books (so,
probably willow moss, but not definitely). This one is somewhat similar to
a cross between Java Moss .2 and Christmas Moss. It has a long center
strand, with long crossing, opposing strands that grow in the same general
direction of the center. Unlike Christmas Moss (with crossing strands that
are basically perpendicular to the center), the crossing pieces come to a
"V" at the center strand. This can also be bought at www.azgardens.com, but
I haven't ever gotten it there (picture matches, though).
The Java Moss .1 and Christmas Moss seem to be about the same color green,
and lighter colored than the other two. Two tanks have Christmas Moss, and
as Kwek Leong has said, it does better in lower temps (much better growth in
my 74* tank than my 78* tank, even with that small of a temp difference).
The Willow Moss is the darkest color of green, and the Java Moss .2 is
somewhere in the middle. Also, in shipping these I've discovered that the
Christmas Moss ships the best (by far) and the Willow Moss ships the worst.
The Java Moss .1 and .2 seem to ship about the same, and handle it admirably
(even in the heat of an AL summer), but still not as well as the Christmas
Moss (which looked like it had been hand delivered from 2 blocks
away...though it went from Singapore to AL).
Now, I'm not nearly so serious in my moss endeavors as James Purchase, but I
do like to share what little first-hand knowledge I have of these particular
specimens. As soon as I find the cables for my digital camera I'll get some
pictures up and you can compare them yourselves. Until then, Kwek Leong has
pictures of the Christmas Moss on his site, and you can find an OK picture
of willow moss at http://www.azgardens.com/images/page2.45.gif.
I hope this message 1) clears up some of the confusion that I caused in my
last moss-related posts, and 2) helps anyone who wants a moss variety to
choose and find what suits them.
Cameron in AL
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