Madagascar Lace Plants

Jeff and Hoesch,

 A while ago I asked Claus Christensen of Tropica what he could tell me about
Madagascar lace plants, and here is his reply.  I thought it was pretty grim
if he couldn't keep 90% of them alive!<g>  Soon after I got this, the one I
was keeping joined the other 89 in it's group of 100.<VBG>

 >> Sorry to disappoint you!! This plant IS INCALCULABLE for me too! It is
very hard to cultivate this plant in aquarium. Mostly (ca. 50%) of the plant
die very quickly! Most of the rest (40%) of the plants do not really grow -
they only use the energy stored in the bulb - after this
 reserve is used to develop new leaves the plant will be smaller and smaller!
But a very little part (10%) grow up to a really beautiful and big plants!
Often do they reach a size over 80 cm. People there have seen it - always
remember it! In these aquariums the plant grow year after year (with out a
sleeping period!)

 The very "funny" about it is - it is never completely solved why there is
this so. (I have used some time to try)! There is no 100% secure way to

 Some facts:
 Most people with luck do have not to hard water!
 The plant is sensitive on bacteria and fungus!
 The plant is probably sensitive on copper and other heavy metal!
 The plant prefer a clean bottom material but still with some nutrient!
 It a very variable species - and the species from different places
 is different in cultivation! But my investigation show it is not all the
 Some experiment have shown that it is more easy if the water is not too hot -
but I have also good result in 28 C degree!

 One of the main problems is that all (99.9%) of all sold plants are "wild
plants" imported direct from Madagascar and Mauritius. Because of that they
are not "domesticated"! The same problem as with some imported "wild fish"!

 In the moment there is some experiments with cultivating the plant from seed
and in "In Vitro laboratory" (test tube "plants"). But it take about 3-4 year
before a good bulb is developed - and then it is extreme expensive! <<

 Didn't mean to depress you... maybe you'll be one of the lucky 10%!

  E-mail from: Karen Randall, 24-Apr-1995