re: Short foreground plants

>From: "Dan Simon" <dan_simon at macgw_claircom.com>
>I'm looking for some new plants for my 10 gallon tank that is kept on my
>at work.  I currently have  lots of water sprite and a litte Java fern. I
>short foreground plants that will cover the bottom portion of the tank.
>ideas ?

One plant that I really like as a lawn-type plant is Lilaeopsis
brasiliensis.  It needs pretty high light though.  I'd recommend 3 15w
tubes or 3 13w compact FL tubes over it.  Under proper conditions, it'll
spread out in a thick mat about 1-2" tall.  The brighter the light, the
shorter the lawn.  It's also relatively easy to find in aquariums stores
(at least in Dallas).  

The plants for sale are almost always grown emersed, and should be
separated from their rock wool, pulled apart into plugs, and planted.  The
original plugs will persist for a while, but more importantly, they will
send out numerous runners all over the unshaded portions of your tank (they
don't easily invade shaded portions).  After a couple of months,
particularly if you have snails, the original plugs will have died off
(mostly because the emersed form just doesn't cope well underwater), but by
then you'll have a thickening lawn of lilaeopsis spreading out at least 6"
from each origin point.

One caveat:  If you have other plants among the Lil, and need to do some
weeding, you'll probably find yourself uprooting a lot of Lil in the
process.  It doesn't hang on very deeply or very well.

It's one of my favorites.

David W. Webb           Enterprise Computing
Texas Instruments Inc.  Dallas, TX USA
(972) 575-3443 (voice)  MSGID:       DAWB
(972) 575-4853 (fax)    Internet:    dwebb at ti_com
(972) 581-2380 (pager)  Text Pager:  dwebb at ti_com Subj:PAGE