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Plant ID and curious Java Fern Growth

PostPosted: Mon Jun 20, 2011 11:58 am
by Studman0143
I need two things please my friends.

1. I bought this plant several months ago when I started working at Petsmart. We shortly after stopped carrying it and I can't find the paperwork we had on it. I thought I remember seeing on the ID Card that it was a type of fern, but I don't remember. Does anybody know? Also, if you do know, could you please tell me how to split it because I'd like to start growing more for my big planted tank I'll be setting up in two months.

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Question 2: What is growing on the tips of my Java Fern? I do have some free floating java moss throughout the tank that almost looks like it has wrapped itself around the tip of 3 leaves, but I can't tell if that is what has caused this or not. It almost looks like a new leaf has started to form at the tip and those are its stems coming out. Any ideas?

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Re: Plant ID and curious Java Fern Growth

PostPosted: Mon Jun 20, 2011 1:48 pm
by ScottFish
The first picture looks like an Amazon Sword plant; a popular plant sold at your store. I don't know how to split it up. We'll let some of our plant experts weigh in on indentifying and propogating this plant. The other pictures of your Java shows how it reproduces from it's tips. When the "youngster"gets big enough you can gently pull it off, or wait for it to release on its own. You can then let them float and get bigger, or tie them off on a rock, or plant them --with the rhizome above the gravel.

Re: Plant ID and curious Java Fern Growth

PostPosted: Mon Jun 20, 2011 5:15 pm
by Hurriken
Rubin Sword. One of my favorite plants but it gets HUGE!

Re: Plant ID and curious Java Fern Growth

PostPosted: Mon Jun 20, 2011 7:25 pm
by discusfishies
Thats not a rubin sword its amazon sword i have the same one.

Re: Plant ID and curious Java Fern Growth

PostPosted: Mon Jun 20, 2011 8:07 pm
by J.B.
"Amazon" is really somewhat of a generalization when it comes to many of the Echinodorus species, particularly when sold/purchased from the "big box" pet stores. There actually is an "Amazon" Sword plant, and it is called Echinodorus amazonicus, and it looks like this...

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The plant presented here by Studman, is without question, Echinodorus sp. 'Rubin', as Hurriken has already identified. It's actually a man-made hybrid from Echinodorus horemanii and Echinodorus barthii. With plenty of light, and some substrate fertilizer sticks, it'll grow well and show some really nice red hues on its leaves. You'll probably need some additional lighting for that Alternanthera reineckii you have next to it, anyway.

Re: Plant ID and curious Java Fern Growth

PostPosted: Tue Jun 21, 2011 2:10 am
by Studman0143
J.B. wrote:"Amazon" is really somewhat of a generalization when it comes to many of the Echinodorus species, particularly when sold/purchased from the "big box" pet stores. There actually is an "Amazon" Sword plant, and it is called Echinodorus amazonicus, and it looks like this...

Image

The plant presented here by Studman, is without question, Echinodorus sp. 'Rubin', as Hurriken has already identified. It's actually a man-made hybrid from Echinodorus horemanii and Echinodorus barthii. With plenty of light, and some substrate fertilizer sticks, it'll grow well and show some really nice red hues on its leaves. You'll probably need some additional lighting for that Alternanthera reineckii you have next to it, anyway.


Awesome, thank you for the ID J.B. and Hurriken. It definitely has plenty of good fertilizer and lighting as it grows very well. So any idea how I can split it, I'd like more of them. And how big does it get Hurriken? I've been growing it for over 6 months now. It produces 2-3 new, beautiful red leaves a week. It really hasn't gotten any taller than it looks right now, but as it gets bushier, I just clip off leaves and feed them to my turtle.

Also, the Alternanthera reineckii you refer to, it was a struggle to get it growing right at first. It had really long stems, and small leaves at first. Ever since I have replanted it when all the white roots started showing up, or it seems to be getting weaker with height, it has grown extremely well. It use to be an algae attractor, but now it stays bright red. I will be moving it to a new tank soon, but right now it sits under 5100K lighting and is growing well.

Re: Plant ID and curious Java Fern Growth

PostPosted: Tue Jun 21, 2011 2:11 am
by Studman0143
ScottFish wrote:The first picture looks like an Amazon Sword plant; a popular plant sold at your store. I don't know how to split it up. We'll let some of our plant experts weigh in on indentifying and propogating this plant. The other pictures of your Java shows how it reproduces from it's tips. When the "youngster"gets big enough you can gently pull it off, or wait for it to release on its own. You can then let them float and get bigger, or tie them off on a rock, or plant them --with the rhizome above the gravel.


That's awesome. I will let it keep growing then. About how big do you think it gets before it will come off or for me to pull it off.

And dumb question, but what exactly is the rhizome on a plant? How can I identify it?

Re: Plant ID and curious Java Fern Growth

PostPosted: Tue Jun 21, 2011 7:22 am
by ScottFish
Rhizome is the base of the plant that grows parellel to the substrate where the leaves and roots sprout from. I usually don't pull the "youngster" off the "adult" until its leaves are about 11/2 to 2 inches, or until they release on their own. You'll be able to fill in an area with Java in no time, and it will be relatively very low maintenance.

Re: Plant ID and curious Java Fern Growth

PostPosted: Tue Jun 21, 2011 11:11 pm
by kb46
Studman0143 wrote:That's awesome. I will let it keep growing then. About how big do you think it gets before it will come off or for me to pull it off.

And dumb question, but what exactly is the rhizome on a plant? How can I identify it?

I've had the java fernlets grow to about 1cm/half inch before coming off on their own. I would recommend leaving them on there until they release by themselves because that way the baby plant will be bigger and easier to attach to its new spot.

Note that rhizomes aren't on all plants - just the ones like anubias and java ferns that grow on other things (epiphytes? and I'm not sure that all epiphytes have a rhizome)

I don't know about splitting your sword although it may be possible. If you are prepared to wait, it will throw out a stalk/runner rather than a leaf and a new plant will grow on the end. If you want another plant close by the parent you can just bury the runner, or you can cut it and replant the baby plant wherever you like.
(Actually, I don't know this for sure since the Rubin is a hybrid, it might not reproduce? Maybe JB can confirm?) :scratch:

It sounds like you're doing well with your planted tank. Be sure to post some pictures of your new one when it is up and running. Better still, keep a journal in our journals section - great way to keep track of when you do things and make changes.

Kylie

Re: Plant ID and curious Java Fern Growth

PostPosted: Thu Jun 30, 2011 3:48 pm
by freshfish
Yeah, I wouldn't try and split your sword. I think it CAN be done under some circumstances without killing the plant, but I think you'd do better to either just go find another one or wait for it to flower like Kylie has suggested. Propagating swords is usually a slow process, and I'm not sure yours is anywhere large enough to become a Mother plant, though- full grown Rubin swords can fill up large tanks (I've seen some take over at least half of a 75gal tank).