Bolbitis and Lotus
Subject: Bolbitis heteroclita (water fern)
> I've come across a plant for which I can't find any reference in
> books. In the plant index compiled by Neil Frank and George Boot
> saw that a description for Bolbitus heteroclita is in following
> - -Aquarium Atlas, Baench Volume 2
> - -Aquarium Plants, Windelov's Tropica catalogue
> - -Picture Encyclopedia of Aquarium Plants, Yamada
> If anybody on this list have any of the above books at home I'd
> appreciate if they'd drop me a few lines about the requirements
> cultivation of this interesting plant.
Well, I have lots of books, but I'll tell you what I know of
Bolbitis heteroclita from experience instead. Almost all of what
I've seen offered fro sale is emerse grown, and adapts _very_
slowly to aquatic life. If you can get a piece from someone else
already growing it submerged, you'll do better. To me, the
emersed form looks a lot like poison ivy. The submerged leaves
are much smaller and tightly crinkled.
I have grown the plant submerged under a variety of situations.
It seems to do best with supplemental CO2, but "best" is a
relative term. It's anything but a fast grower, and I keep it
more as a curiousity than for it's decorative aspects. It seems
to do slightly better in my moderately hard water than in a
friend's very soft water. In his tank, it has hung on for three
years, but has produced three leaves in this period of time. In
two years in my tanks, the small piece I started with has
increased substantially, but it never looks very robust.
I have had better luck culturing it emersed in high humidity,
(enclosed in plastic) but it's resemblance to poison ivy in the
emersed state made me itch.<g>
Over all, I'd say that this plant is a poor cousin to either B.
heudelotti or Java Fern in terms of decorative value.
> I would also like to know if Malaysian sword and Java fern are
> same plant. The plant I saw came from Singapore and was likely
> cultivated in nursery(shape is a bit different than aquarium gro
There are several different forms of Java Fern, both due to
cultural differences and the fact that the plant is naturally very
variable. There are also other species of Microsorum that are not
currently being used in the aquarium trade. Perhaps it was one of
these that you saw. I've heard Australian members of APD talk
about "Malaysian Fern", and they say this is a different plant
from M. pteropus, but I've never seen it personally.
Subject: Lotus lily question
> I have three lotus lilies that provide a nice variety of color
> 75-gallon tank. The plant that has been the most vigorous in its
> started out with many leaves and has continually produced many f
> leaves. However, the submersed part of the plant seems to be dim
> while it continues to send up stalks with floating leaves. (At p
> are five leaves on the water surface.) Are the floating leaves r
> for the submersed part of the plant diminishing? Do I have to ch
> one or the other?
Yes. If you want a lotus to continue to produce submerged
vegetation, you need to remove all floater before they get to the
surface. Usually, the plant "gives up" after a while, and stops
sending up floaters. (at least for a while) You need to catch
these leaves as soon as you see them, because they can easily
shoot to the surface in 24 hours.
Aquatic Gardeners Assoc.