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Re: Alternanthera species

* To: Aquatic-Plants at actwin_com
* Subject: Alternanthera species
* From: Paul Sears <psears at nrn1_NRCan.gc.ca>
* Date: Thu, 12 Jun 2003 16:03:22 -0400 (EDT)
* In-reply-to: <200303141156_h2EBuo6N009405 at otter.actwin.com> from "Aquatic Plants Digest" at Mar 14, 2003 06:56:50 AM

I recently bought a plant I believe to be an Alternanthera of some sort.
I've looked at pictures on the web, and suspect that I have A. sessilis,
which most sources say won't grow submersed.  Could anyone familiar with
both A. reineckii and A. sessilis describe the differences for me?


Alternanthera sessilis is dark beet-red color. A. reineckii has various color forms, green to red, but none is such a dark, rather dull, beet red. A. sessilis also has a thinner stem. than reineckii. When I attempted to grow A. sessilis submersed, it lost most of its leaves, and was not able to form any new leaves. The stem grew very slowly, but the leaves formed were only vestiges. when the stem finally got above the water surface, it produced normal leaves. I have had a similar experience with a large species of Ludwigia that is common in this area (central Mississippi). It, too, can not form leaves underwater, but the stem can slowly grow.

Paul Krombholz in soggy central Mississippi, where it is wetter than it ought to be.