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Jade swords revealed and MA Legislation

Subject: Jade swords revealed

>     I have positively identified my jade sword as E. horemanni.  I used 
>     the Echinodorus key in Rataj and Horeman, and also mine is big enough 
>     now so it looks exactly like the photo on page 189.
>     Anyone else ever hear of E. horemanni sold under the name "jade 
>     swords?"

E. horemanni is a beautiful plant, and, yes, it is quite undemanding. BUT,
I hope your tank is big... they get HUGE.  Leaves can be more than 40"
long.  We had one that got passed around from one member od our local A.S.
to another looking for a permanent home, as it out grew a number of tanks.
It's now residing in a 150G tank, and it looks big in there.

Oh, BTW, I've never heard it sold as "Jade Sword", but distributors have
made up stranger names for plants and animals!


OK folks, we need to get working here.  Now Susan Fargo (D- Lincoln) has
introduced a bill here in Massachusetts which will (in addition to several
better tactics) ban the sale of "exotic" aquatic plants.  This mis-placed
legislation has already been forced on the residents in NH.  They didn't
know it was coming until the legislation was already in passed.  At least
here in MA, we have the opportunity to have a say in the matter.  

It is absolutely true that it is important to protect our waterways from
invasive non-native plants.  But banning the sale of aquarium plants is not
the answer.  Public awareness of the dangers of introducing non-native
species of _any_ sort is a much better answer.  People who are allowed to
experience a slice of nature in their living rooms, learning to tend and
nurture it, will become much better advocates for the protection of our
wild resources.  We are unlikely to protect what we haven't learned to love.

Boats are the main source of movement of non-native weeds from one water
source to another.  But it's harder to solve that problem.  The banning of
aquarium plants makes it _look_ like something is being done.

If you live in Massachusetts, PLEASE contact your representative on this
issue.  If you live in another state, PLEASE keep your eye out for this
type of legislation.  In January it was NH, now it's MA.  How long before
it gets to your state?

Karen Randall
Aquatic Gardeners Association