aponogeton ulvaceus Plant care, Habitat, Propagation

Aponogeton ulvaceus, or curly-leaved, is a perennial plant that lives in water. Discovered in 1870. The name indicates a resemblance to seaweed (Ulva), therefore it is often called “sea salad”, and sometimes Becker’s Aponogeton, after the scientist who first described it. You can use it for your fish aquarium.

aponogeton ulvaceus aquarium plant

Aponogeton ulvaceus Plant Habitat and Description

A native of the island of Madagascar, it is a very beautiful and peculiar aquarium plant, large, with long (40-60 cm) and wide (up to 12 cm) leaves of soft green color, twisted in a spiral and having corrugated edges. From too bright lighting, they acquire a red tint.

A distinctive feature of the leaf plate is the veins in the form of a mesh. A rosette of petioled leaves on a shortened stem grows from an egg-shaped tuber (rhizome). A bush of over 40 leaves looks attractive in the background in a large aquarium.

Under normal conditions, the plant quickly releases arrows with spike-shaped small purple, white or yellow flowers with a faint odor.

Unpretentious, grows in soft and hard water, enriched with carbon dioxide.

Aponogeton ulvaceus Care in aquarium

Aponogeton ulvaceus, family Aponogetonaceae, genus Aponogetonaceae is a river species. The leaves are perforating, darken in standing water, so it should be filtered regularly and a quarter of the volume should be changed every week.

Requires the following containment conditions:

  1. The water temperature during the growing season is 22-27 ° C. Aponogeton ulvaceus is a tropical plant, but it normally tolerates a drop in water temperature to 15-20 ° C.
  2. The water is soft (hardness less than 8 °). In hard, the leaves die, and with a hardness of less than 1 ° they become small.
  3. Neutral or slightly acidic environment.
  4. Good diffused light up to 0.5 W / L for 12 hours. Due to the lack of light, it stretches out, losing its decorative effect. A suitable light source is fluorescent lamps. In summer, the aquarium should be protected from the sun.
  5. Soil: sand, small pebbles, clay, peat, some charcoal.
  6. Generation of carbon dioxide.

Aponogeton ulvaceus sheds foliage twice a year: after growth and flowering. The rhizome rests on the bottom for 2 months, at temperatures up to 22-23 ° C it can not be resettled. When the water temperature rises, the roots are shortened and stored in a cool room at 18-20 ° C in wet sand.

For vegetation, you need a mixture of sand, small pebbles, charcoal in a ratio of 3: 1: 1. It is advisable to enrich the soil with clay additives, place a layer of 4-5 cm on the bottom, and plant parts of the rhizome in it. In freshwater, they will give foliage.

Underwater bushes need a container 60 cm high with a bottom area of ​​at least 1.5 m².

During the growing season, the plant should be fed with complex mineral fertilizers.

Aponogeton ulvaceus aquarium plant Propagation methods

After resting, the plant grows rapidly and blooms. It reproduces in several ways: vegetatively, daughter plants, seeds.

During vegetative propagation, 2-4 cuts are made on the rhizome of a healthy bush, trying to avoid damaging the growth points. The place of the incision is rubbed with charcoal powder, the seedling is placed in the ground. Soon, sprouts emerge from the dormant buds.

The vegetative method is considered less productive because if the kidneys are damaged, part of the tuber

Aponogeton ulvaceus with purple inflorescences.

On the rhizome, the formation of daughter shoots from the adventitious bud is possible. When the first leaves appear, it is necessary to cut off a part of the rhizome with a sprout and plant in the ground.

The simplest way of reproduction is by seed. Flowering begins at 10-12 months and lasts from March

until mid-summer. When flowers appear, the pollen should be transferred from one plant to another. To do this, gently move a soft brush over the flowers or transfer pollen by touching the flowers to each other. This is cross-pollination.

Aponogeton ulvaceus with purple inflorescences self-pollinates.

To keep the pollen from sticking together, you need a supply of fresh, dry air into the aquarium. For this, the top glass must be slightly open. Since the ear of the inflorescence rises above the water, the distance to the glass must be at least 6 cm, otherwise, the flowers will burn.

The seeds will ripen 1.5 months after flowering and pollination. Most often, they appear at the bottom of the ear. The result of pollination is different: if a lot of seeds have been formed in the current year, the next time the harvest may be minimal or absent.

To eliminate the loss of seeds, you can put a ring around the ear, then the seeds will not blur and will not be lost.

The collected seeds should be planted in a soil mixture of sand, clay, bottom silt in a separate shallow vessel with good lighting and water at a temperature of 26 ° C. There should not be a lot of silt at the bottom, otherwise the roots will rot.

Seeds are germinated twice a year to grow Aponogeton. They are placed in a layer of water 10 cm high, the temperature should be + 26 ° C. After the appearance of thin roots and leaves, the sprouts are planted in a soil consisting of sand, clay, crumbs of boiled peat. The thickness of the soil should be 3 cm at a water level of 5 cm. Water is added as the bushes grow.

It is possible to sow seeds without germination, for which small pits are made in the soil of the aquarium, seeds are lowered into them, water is added dropwise to a level of about 1 cm.The water layer is increased as the seeds germinate.

The alternation of growth and dormancy prevents the plant from depleting and dying. After flowering, there is a period of sleep. After 2 months, the plant begins to grow rapidly again.

Large plants require regular feeding. Species with purple flowers have up to 90 leaves per specimen. They develop continuously for a long time in the aquarium. Species with white and yellow flowers need rest periods.

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