Hippuris vulgaris in Nagano

Hello everyone!
I hope you all had a Merry Christmas and a happy New Year!
Today’s post will be on a stem plant that some friends and I went to take a look at in Nagano, Japan. I have not seen this plant in the hobby at all and the reason I think for that I will cover later on in this post. I hope you all enjoy this post!

The plant that we went to look at is Hippuris vulgaris. This plant is actually well-known in this area, so much so that there is a sign nearby a stream where it is plentiful. The sign basically states a few things such as that this plant only grows in colder areas/temperatures, where else in Japan as well as other places in the world that this plant can be found (Alaska, Siberia, Greenland). Lastly that this plant is very important and unique to the Nagano prefecture. As the sign nearby this stream stated, this plant only grows in colder areas and colder temperatures. This is the reason that it is not in the hobby, not many people have the money to spend on a cooling-device for their aquariums, it is just too troublesome.
Hippuris stream sign

We found that is plant is quite plentiful in this area, both immersed as well as emersed specimens. The best explanation that I can give for the look of this plant is that it has the structure of a very leafy Eustralis/Ammania, but with translucent green (like Bolbitis) leaves.
hippuris immersed
hippuris emerged

There were also other aquatic plants in the area that were in great abundance, such as Japanese Willow Moss, Fontinalis antipyretica. The stream pictured below was full of it, the whole bottom of the stream was matted with this beautiful moss, it was really quite a sight, and the moss was so clean and healthy, just amazing!
fontinalis stream
fontinalis antipyretica

Also lots of emerged Murdannia spirata
Murdannia spirata
Including beautiful patches of immersed Elatine triandra, this stuff was everywhere!
Elatine triandra

I hope you enjoyed this post on a rarely-seen stem plant from the colder areas of our world!
If you like what you are seeing please feel free to leave a comment!
Have a good one guys!
Inspire91

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Piptospatha sp.Kalimantan

Hello again everyone!
Sorry for such a long delay between posts, but after summer vacation was over, lots of work ensued! Nonetheless here is a post on a relatively new Aroid called Piptospatha sp.”Kalimantan”.

PiptospathaKalimantan

It has been around for quite some time, but again relatively newly introduced to the hobby. It isn’t the most flashy or interesting Aroid around, but it is interesting in it’s own way with a bright red petiole and spade-shaped leaves with finely serrated edging. This plant does get a little on the large side reaching heights of about 12 inches, and the leaves get to about 4 inches from top to bottom and 3 inches in width.

PiptospathaKalimantan

In terms of care, it thrives in a moderate amount of light, soft and acidic water. As with many if not all Aroids you will want to make sure not to bury the rhizome under the soil as it will rot and the plant will die. As opposed to some Aroids, this particular one cannot be attached onto wood or rock, it simply won’t take and will eventually die, it must be planted in a soil-like media. This is quite a tough and hardy Aroid, it can take a beating and is lenient to changes in it’s environment, also it does not have a “die-back” or melt period like with some other Aroids.

All in all this is an easy Aroid to grow, give it a shot if you have a chance to get it!
I hope you enjoyed this short post on the Piptospatha sp.”Kalimantan”
If you like what you are seeing please feel free to leave a comment!
Have a good one guys!
Inspire91

Anubias “Coin leaf”

I’m back from summer vacation!
Sorry for the long break between posts, but here I am again with a new and interesting plant! Today’s post will be on a new Anubias variety called “Coin leaf”.

anubiascoinleaf

I just recently found out about this variety from a good friend of mine. Like Anubias “Stardust”, this variety can at times be quite difficult to obtain, and comes from a source which can at times be quite “stingy” with their supply. Due to that circumstance getting your hands on this plant is quite a challenge.

This is the most popular of Anubias varieities here in Japan at this time. What makes this plant special is clear by the name given to it. The leaves are almost perfect circles, shaped just like coins. Even I must admit that the shape of the leaves have a unique allure to them.

anubiascoinleaf
anubiascoinleaf

This plant is easy to grow, not anymore demanding than the typical Anubias. The leaves get to a max diameter of about 2 inches. From the side this plant isn’t the prettiest, but when viewed from the top, a large mass of this Anubias is quite a sight!

I hope you enjoyed this short post on the Anubias “Coin leaf”.
If you like what you are seeing please feel free to leave a comment!
Have a good one guys!
Inspire91

New Large Pearl Grass

How are all of you doing!?
Today’s write up will be covering a somewhat new ground-cover/foreground plant that has come up here in Japan. It has yet to receive a scientific name, so for now it is being called, “New Large Pearl Grass” by the hobbyists here in Japan. “Pearl grass” here is the general name for Hemianthus micranthemoides, or “HC”, and as is fitting this new plant resembles that plant, but is basically a larger version of it.

NLPG close up

The most defining characteristics of this plant is that the leaves (almost 1/2 inch max in diameter) are perfectly round circles that come out in pairs at each node along the stem. The lack of any petiole connecting the main stem to the leaf, makes for a very compact-look. When this plant is grown to its fullest it looks like a tight mat of circular leaves. At this time there really isn’t any other ground-cover plant like it in the hobby.

NLPG
NLPG

Ideal conditions for this plant are soft and acidic water, with stronger (4-5 watts a gallon) lighting. Stronger lighting is ideal in that since this is a low-lying plant, less light will reach it since it will be at the bottom of the tank (assuming you will grow this in a standard size tank, and not a short tank) basically stronger lighting will be needed to penetrate the water depth, in order to give this plant the amount of light needed to flourish.
In terms of maintenance, as with most thick ground-cover plants, detritus or dead material tends to gather underneath it if there is no current around it at the bottom of the tank, creating a “dead-space”. That gathered dead material will cause the root structure to rot and die, so try to keep a current around this plant or be sure to “fan” out the dead material underneath it when you clean the tank.

Lastly here is a comparison picture (not my own) of the New large pearl grass growing next to Hemianthus micranthemoides. Here you can clearly see the size differential in the 2 plants. New large pearl grass is growing in the top right corner, whereas HC is being grown in the bottom left.

NLPG and HC comparison

I hope you enjoyed this post on a new foreground/ground-cover plant that you can keep your eyes out for!
If you like what you are seeing please feel free to leave a comment!
Have a good one guys!
Inspire91