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Rotala Sunset and right trimming?

Discussion in 'General Plant Topics' started by Petex, Feb 23, 2013.

  1. Petex

    Petex Member

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    Hi,
    I noticed that once my Rotala Sunset gets trimmed that it starts to look worst and/or the new cutted stems die.
    The mother plants itself looks healty for me (image attached)
    If I don´t touch the plant everything is fine, but if start to trimm it = things go worst.

    What is the reasons?
    Is there any special trimming technique needed for Rotala Sunset?
     
  2. Petex

    Petex Member

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    and here is an image from a new cuttet stem that starts to look "strange":
    The cutted stems loose their red colour and get weird leafs and tiny tips, mostly the stem itselfs starts to rot in such a case

    sunset-dead.jpg
     
    #2 Petex, Feb 23, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 23, 2013
  3. yme

    yme Lifetime Charter Member
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    yup...

    and also yup...

    I have managed to keep this plant alive for three years now... but I have the same issues you experience. But since I read that Tom also has this issue... it became easier to accept this melting/drooling after trimming.

    it does however makes it hard for me to have a NICE looking group of plants as some plants stay oke after trimming and others stunt and grow side shoots. this results in a lot of height difference between the stems and thus also auto-shading that results in the stunting of the shaded stems.

    I must say that I have never tried to trim it like a hedge. I am too afraid that I will loose this plant.

    So no, if no idea how to avoid this behavior...

    The approach that I am now trying is to elevate the PO4 levels from 1-2 to 4-5 ppm. I do see that this result in more "water" roots and I am hoping that this could help...

    greets,

    yme
     
  4. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    I've had the same experience.

    What's more, if I trim say 10 stems, maybe 5 out of the 10 will rot, the others are fine.
    Mother plant is always fine.

    So it cannot be light, ferts, CO2.

    Has to be something with the trimming.

    I've tried to be careful and gently break off the stem from the mother plant that already has nice roots and is not well connected to the mother plant.
    Same result.

    The good news is that I can grow enough to form a self sustaining population pretty easily, but I cannot have a consistent long term group that gets trimmed often.
    I decided to move the plants to the 180 where they might only get trimmed once every 2 months.

    This way I have far more plants/stems between trimmings.
     
  5. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    I also get maybe 2-5 plantlets with roots as the main trimmed plant dies off.

    I also moved the plant instead of cutting it, and still have some die back, not as much as trimming, but maybe 1/3 the plants vs 1/2.

    If you leave the plant alone, allow it to really become over grown, then do not uproot the mother plant, then you can maintain a good group.
     
  6. yme

    yme Lifetime Charter Member
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    hi!

    I just bought and received some cuphea anagalloidea. looks like the sunset, a bit smaller, but less than I anticipated and probably doesn't melt. no idea how fuzzy this plant is and how prone it is to stunting anf whether it will retain the nice red colour.... but so far: I like it.


    greets,

    yme
     
  7. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    Cuphea is a nice little plant.

    the best way to deal with the R sunset is to simply allow it to grow and not trim it if you can help it. I placed it in the back ground and the single stem I had in now 15-20 tops.
    I'll trim a few and see how many make it, then take those and allow another batch to grow in nicely in the 180 Gallon tank.
    This will give me a large no# to cuttings to draw from to plant a nice row in the 120 Gallon tank.
     
  8. SuomaSaariaho

    SuomaSaariaho Junior Poster

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    hey it looks amazing plant to me i liked it a lot i also want to know where could i get such type of plant???
     
    #8 SuomaSaariaho, Feb 28, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: May 17, 2013
  9. yme

    yme Lifetime Charter Member
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    I got it from the Chatuchak market in Bangkok, thailand :)

    greets,

    yme
     
  10. SuomaSaariaho

    SuomaSaariaho Junior Poster

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    i visited many places in bangkok but didnt got such type of plant there
     
    #10 SuomaSaariaho, Mar 2, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: May 17, 2013
  11. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    I had the big clump uproot after a water change due to pearling and air intake.

    So I have to replant it. The larger healthier stems should be better able to recover and not melt I would presume.

    Very very nice and healthy stems.
    So the growing conditions, eg: light/CO2/ferts/livestock/filtration etc.......cannot be the cause of the behavior and die back.
    If that were the case, then I'd see much more of it on the plants, not just post trimming/replanting/moving.
     
  12. Petex

    Petex Member

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    Leafs are little bit different (compare my screenshot)
    However, the growing speed from Cuphea and Sunset is nearly the same.
    So this means both are slow growing plants, the good news is that a Cuphea will never make any hassle if you trimm it. :)

    I started with 1 stem Sunset, after some weeks I cutted 3 sideshoots - but the motherplant started to look again worst after cutting and also 2 off 3 cutted sideshoots died. So this means I am again @1x plant. :rolleyes:

    cuphea.jpg
     
    #12 Petex, Mar 11, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 11, 2013
  13. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    Petex, I know you are obsessed with this plant, I suppose I am as well.

    I've had some rather excellent results with my post trim success. I have 1 failure out of 10 stems, now I am at nearly 100% success rate.
    It has done amazingly well in my 180 Gallon tank with very careful replanting and trimming methods, allowing the plants to get quite large before moving them/trimming them.
    If I do make a cut with scissors, I leave the old stump where it's at to resprout and it often puts out about 3-6 side shoots in a week or two.

    I had one stem not too long ago, now I must have 20-30.

    I might grow some Cuphea again.
     
  14. Petex

    Petex Member

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    Hi Tom,
    As far as I know Ca, B, Zn, Cu deficiencies can also cause stunted tips and/or plant melting.
    Some off those nutritions are toxic if too much and so obvisiously, only little are in aquatic fertilizers.
    And I now have a question about this study: http://wenku.baidu.com/view/4ec7ad573c1ec5da50e270ca.html

    Certainly such a study in any dirty and contaminated water can not be transfered for our tanks.
    But seems some plants like Ludwigia Palustris can have daily Cu uptake around 0,1ppm. (most likely toxic levels for animals and some sensitive plants too)
    Well, aquatic fertilizers still add Cu around 0,0006ppm/day or whatever so.
    So what about if some plants like Sunset requiere/would have higher Copper uptakes as other plants?
    Could plant melting be caused in such cases by copper deficieny?
    `
     
    #14 Petex, Apr 5, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 5, 2013
  15. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    No, none of these claims support the observations.
    The plants grow vigorously.

    It is only post trimming shock/movement/uprooting that causes the issues.
    More trace elements might confer some resistance for some species, but I'm very doubtful.

    More a response to being disturbed, die back and then resprout after the cutting with new side shoots. All the observations point that direction.
    What is weird, is that not all the stems do this, only a certain number.

    I must have 80+ stems now. The main stem after cutting dies, but then I get 10+ new plants from the death. If I allow the plant to grow large and am careful with the roots and moving it, then it does not do this.
     
  16. Petex

    Petex Member

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    Yes, so my minds were if it could be possible if some plant perhaps get a short nutrition deficiency while others get not.
    If any nutrition would be short, not all plants can get this nutrition - or?

    I received the Sunset as a plant with very huge and primary green leafs.
    The plant was shipped from Italy and had a long shipping journey. So if this plants are that sensitive about cutting, why can cutted stems survive such long shipping without any problems? :confused:
    In my tank the green looking plant growed the first weeks without problems, but turned after a while very red with short leafs.
    So, I am not sure if there is perhaps any traces lacking or if this green-to-red transformation is just fine?
    Are there any studies about aquatic planted tanks and their daily B, Zn, Cu uptakes around?
     
    #16 Petex, Apr 6, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 6, 2013
  17. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    Yes, but the stems are all exposed to the same concentration of nutrients, same light, same CO2. Not really anyway to say they are deficient vs the stem right next to the other.

    Sounds like the plant you got was emergent growth.

    I'm not sure why emergent growth can survive better, but many of the cut stems seemed fine in my tank, only a few did die back.
    The green emergent growth also followed a similar pattern: new red growth sprouted from that green plant and I ended up with 10-12 stems after 2 weeks.

    There are no studies on Rotala's I'm aware of for nutrients. This is rarely done these days in Science, in the 1980's and before, it was popular. Then mostly with weeds of concern economically.
     
  18. Solcielo lawrencia

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    Is it possible that the reason for dieback is the result of the sugars not having the time to be transported down to the lower part of the stem? And the reason the cut portion dies is due to the sugars being transported down the stem for root development? Is there a difference between cutting from a fully rooted stem and a newly rooting stem?
     
  19. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    Not likely any transport issues.

    There are ample roots on the stems that die back, we also have stems with say 5-10 branching tops, some 10-15cm long with full roots, and one of those will die, but the others are just fine.

    So the base main stem is not controlling that.

    If you plant a "cut" stump in higher flow with decent CO2 etc....the plant will sprout perhaps 5-10 new tops and grow and grow without ANY issues.
    After 1-2 months, you have a nice large bunch 30cm and perhaps 10-15 tops.

    I've taken newly stunted tops and replanted them in the higher current areas in the Starougyne and they die back, but the new tops sprout at the nodes and those plants form new roots etc.
    This way even if I get die back, I can easily propagate a lot more stems that are healthy and nice if I catch the die back fast.

    So I might lose 1-2 stems, but after a few weeks, I gain 10-20.

    I'd prefer more control and no die back obviously, but.........I can at least produce a lot of plants.
     
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