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Re: Roger Miller's "E.Rose"

Roger Wote:

>I finally acted on a plan to set up a large Echinodorus in a very small
>tank, with the plant growing emersed.  This is to adorn my office.  My
>original idea was to grow something like a rubin sword out of a 2 1/2
>gallon hex tank.  I balked at the cost of the hex tank and instead bought
>an equivalent-sized glass, vase-like "fish bowl".
>Also instead of a rubin sword the LFS was selling something they called
>Echinodorus "Rose".  The plant had the look of the large emergent
>Echinodorus like E. cordifolius and E. osiris.  And it wasn't at all
>"Rose"y, but that's another matter.
>When I indicated (with my right hand, for those trying to visualize) that
>I intended to plant the "Rose" in the fish bowl tucked under my left arm,
>the sales clerk told me that the nursery representative said that "Rose"
>couldn't be grown emersed.
>I was a little taken aback by that, as it appeared to me that the plant I
>selected *had* been grown emersed.  Two new leaves on the plant were
>distinctly lighter-colored and thinner than the older leaves and I assumed
>those were recent submersed growth.  But the salesman insisted that the
>nursery was having a winter special on submersed-grown sword plants, and
>this was part of the purchase.  "Hmmm", said I.
>The sales clerk also couldn't tell me what species an E. "Rose" was, and
>he did let drop that all the E. "Rose" he had seen before were pretty
>rosey, and these weren't.  That leaves open the possibility that the plant
>wasn't E. "Rose" at all.
>So the question is, what in tarnation is E. "Rose" and will it grow
>emersed?  This last part of the question I may have an answer to pretty
>soon, because it's sitting on my dining table now, in a peat-soil-gravel
>substrate under three inches of water, with it's leaves standing pretty as
>you please out of the water and above the rim of the fish bowl.  If anyone
>else has had something sold as E. "Rose" grow above the water (or not) and
>can tell me what it's supposed to look like and how it fared then I'd
>appreciate hearing about it.
>Roger Miller

My answer;

I have had precisely the same experience when I first bought the plant.  It
appeared to have been grown emersed form the thicker, stubby older leaves
but was sprouting those clear "rosy",wavy newer leaves.  I wanted an
emersed plant (cheaper to reproduce) but I was warned by the LFS person
(knowledgeable dude) that this plant is a major pain to force emersed.
Besides, the plant looks very ordinary grown emersed.  When grown
submersed, the plant looks so striking to could be convincingly passed of
as a different species! If you are intent on growing it emersed I advise
you grow your plant submersed first under Co2 and a rich substrate. 

 It is a slower grower than most Echinodorus s. but produces runners at
only 15cm-leaf size. Lower the water to 2/3-tank capacity and seal the
glass hood as completely as possible.  Maintaining near 100% surface - to -
hood humidity is critical.  Let the runners grow along the surface and
support them there (I tie "packing nuts" to them so they don't sink, as
their leaves grow larger).   

Pump in Co2 underwater AND above the surface.  You want to keep both
submersed and emersed zones of the mother plant and the plantlets healthy
but prevent the plantlets from contacting the water with anything but their
roots.  At first, when I developed this technique, I mistakenly pumped the
Co2 in the air zone only and had no Powerhead in the submersed zone to turn
the water.  I had hoped to force the entire plant emersed by creating
favorable emersed conditions while concomitantly providing unfavorable
submersed conditions.  This was fine for the plantlets but caused the
health of the parent plant to decline, which in turn limited the growth of
the plantlets.  Keeping both zones healthy minimized the growing time of
the emersed plantlets.  They can then be separated, potted and grown
emersed.  Always maintain at least (90 - 100)% humidity.


"Those who know HOW will always have a job...
Working for those who know WHY."

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