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trimming techniques

Several people have asked a similar question to the following, but, as far 
as I have read, noone has (dared?) to answer it.

The question involves the best technique that people have discovered for 
trimming aquatic plants in aquaria.  With the excellent conditions we 
provide these plants, their growth is nothing short of incredible.  
Sometimes I feel the need to trim things like Rotala indica or Micranthemum 
micranthemoides twice per week.

For stem plants, like Rotala indica, R. wallichii, Hygrophila stricta, 
etc., which is best?:
           1.  Pull out individual stem; cut a new length; discard 
root-bearing part; replant top part.  This will result in disturbing 
substrate and is a lot of work.
           2.  Hair cut method:  take scissors and cut midway down stem and 
allow to regrow.  Plants will become bushy from cut-point this way.
           3.  Cut stem near base; leave rooted part in substrate and 
replant cut stem.  This sounds good in theory, but with the mass of roots 
at the base of the plants, it is not that practical to replant the cut 
stems.  Also, over time, this will result in a much denser stand of the 
plant since the cut, rooted part will regrow.
           Comments?  Thanks,
 Roxanne Bittman
Please note new email address:
Roxanne Bittman, Botanist                    Natural Diversity Database
Phone: (916) 323-8970                 __o    CA Dept of Fish and Game
Fax:   (916) 324-0475               _ \<_    1220 S St
Internet rbittman at kirk_dfg.ca.gov  ( )/( )   Sacramento, CA 95814