The spectacular aquarium grass Aponogeton Boivinianus is not one of those that are intended for beginner florists and aquarium plants lovers. It is not too capricious and does not require special conditions of detention, but it is large in size and needs a large volume of water.
Aponogeton Boivinianus Aquarium Plant Structure and Characteristics
The leaf blades are collected in a rosette, the plant does not have a pronounced stem. The height of an adult bush can reach 60 cm due to the long ribbon-like leaves. Petioles are short, rarely longer than 5-6 cm. The rest of the length is formed by a beautiful leaf blade of dark green color with a bubbly surface. The blade is 30-50 cm long and 1.5-8 cm wide. The leaf apex is pointed.
The root system consists of a rounded tuber (about 3 cm in diameter) and numerous feeding roots.
The plant blooms, throwing a peduncle with spike-shaped inflorescences on the surface of the water, but in aquariums, it is bred due to its spectacular foliage. In aqua design, it is used as a tapeworm, less often in group rocker landings. When choosing neighbors, it is important not to create crowding and shading for Aponogeton Boivinianus: the plant will shed its leaves and lose its decorative effect.
Aponogeton Boivinianus Plant Care in Aquarium
The natural area of distribution of aponogeton is the reservoirs of India, Sri Lanka, Madagascar. Most modern varieties for aquariums and ponds are artificially bred.
A fairly narrow temperature range is suitable for a tropical plant, but the plant coexists well with warm-water fish, shrimps, turtles and amphibians.
The hydrochemical parameters of the medium can vary in the range:
- pH – 6-8 units;
- hardness – 2-10 ° F;
- the optimum temperature is 22-28 ° C.
An increase in water hardness up to 8 ° W slows down the growth of the bush. New leaves are less frequent and smaller.
When the temperature drops to + 20 … + 18 ° C, the plant falls into a dormant period, shedding all the leaves.
A water change is desirable for the plant. Fresh intake should not exceed ¼ of the volume at a time. The change is carried out on average once a week, just like with traditional aquarium care. To prevent turbidity from accumulating on wavy leaves, it is advisable to provide filtration.
The bushes of an aquatic plant do not need a drainage device, they are planted directly in the backfill at the bottom of the reservoir (with the obligatory use of nutrient substrates or tablets). Sometimes Aponogeton Boivinianus is placed in a container. It can be filled with pond silt or simple garden soil. It is recommended to cover the ground from above with fine gravel or river sand.
Aponogeton Boivinianus requires moderate lighting for 10-12 hours a day. The light intensity is about 0.5 W / l (if fluorescent lamps are used). The plant also tolerates illumination with incandescent lamps well, but in this case, you need to choose a device with a power of at least 1.2 W for each 1 liter of the aquarium capacity.
where to plant Aponogeton Boivinianus in aquarium?
In the aquarium, the preferred places for planting are a large plant medium and background. As a solo plant, it can be planted in the center or on the side, closer to the side of the container. Often, a lush, large bush is used to camouflage equipment and place the aponogeton next to a filter and other technical devices.
It is not recommended to place an aquarium with a plant on a sunny windowsill. This will cause the green algae to grow rapidly.
Aponogeton Boivinianus propagation
For an adult flowering bush, you can use the seed propagation method. Pollination is carried out artificially, with a soft brush (for watercolors), and seeds are formed on the spike-shaped inflorescences. By placing them in a shallow vessel with a nutritious substrate at the bottom, you can achieve germination and development of new bushes at a temperature not lower than + 27 ° C.
It is important to protect young seedlings from algae growth using algaecides. Rosettes with 3-4 leaves can already be transplanted into the aquarium.
Vegetatively, Aponogeton Boivinianus multiplies slowly. Daughter tubers are formed only with sufficient water temperature and normal lighting. Most often, the dormant mother tuber is divided for breeding. With this manipulation, it is necessary to leave 2-3 growth buds on the divisions, so that a new outlet begins to develop from anyone.
Aponogeton Boivinianus Plant Shedding leaves
In early spring, the bush sheds its leaves. This is a normal process associated with the growing cycle. The rest period lasts several weeks. If you dig up the tuber and keep it in cool water (not lower than + 20 ° C) for about 2 months, and then bring the temperature to optimal values, provide bright light, then the rosette will begin to grow again, and the bush planted in the aquarium will bloom.
To limit the overly rapid growth of the grass and prevent the depletion of the tuber (for example, in a warm-water aquarium with fish, where there is a lot of organic matter), the bush is dug up, slightly dried, or the roots are cut off ¼ of the length.
Aponogeton other Varieties
In addition to Aponogetotan Boivin, many varieties of this plant are used in aqua design. Among them there are herbs with original leaves, floating rosettes, etc. The main characteristics of the environment and lighting requirements are approximately the same for all varieties, and in a large aquarium, plants with boivinianus can be combined.
The most beautiful varieties are widespread, these are:
- Uvirandra, or Madagascar
The original form of the leaf blade of the plant: part of the soft tissues is missing between the veins. The bright green leaf of the uvirandra looks like a fine mesh with oblong cells. The size of each plate reaches 30 cm with a width of about 6 cm.
Outwardly, it resembles Boivin’s aponogeton, it requires the same environmental conditions.
The narrow leaves of the rosette have a pronounced midrib. The adjoining parts of the plate are smooth, saturated green. The young leaf is reddish in color. The edge of the plates is wavy.
There are many breeding crop varieties. They differ in the color of the foliage and the degree of waviness of the edge. It grows well only in tropical aquariums at temperatures not lower than + 25 ° C.
- Nathans, or floating
Do not plant in the ground. The rosettes of the plant float on the surface, forming numerous oval leaves with pointed ends and bases. It multiplies easily and transfers sufficiently cool water from outdoor ponds. For the winter, they are transferred to a warm room and stored at a temperature of about + 18 ° C. Most often it is used for landscaping ponds, since in the aquarium only the roots of floating rosettes will be available for review.
More often used as a plant for reservoirs. The height of the petioles can reach 1 m, the leaves are floating, leathery, elongated-oval, have a pointed end. During flowering, it throws out a double ear with large white bracts and black stamens. The spectacular inflorescence has a vanilla aroma. Should hibernate without water, under cover of fallen leaves or humus. In the northern regions, the reservoir itself is additionally covered with boards.
In aqua design, it is often used to imitate seaweed (ulva). Aponogeton resembles its leaves with a strongly wavy edge. The similarity is complemented by the pale green color of the plates.
Other varieties with decorative leaves are also used to decorate aquariums and ponds.