Hygrophila spec. “Pantanal Wavy”

Posted by on Aug 29, 2011 in All Categories, Plant Profiles | 0 comments

Hygrophila spec. “Pantanal Wavy”

This plant is as yet unidentified and its name must hence be considered preliminary. I have kept it for about 6 months now and it is doing quite well in my discus tank, where it grows very fast and has formed a dense stand. Its overall habit and shape does resemble H. polysperma but it is much more unruly and with long internodes and an overall more wavy appearance, at least in its submersed state. It is obviously fond of higher temperatures or does not mind them.

Hygrophila spec. ''Pantanal Wavy'' submersed

Hygrophila spec. ''Pantanal Wavy'' submersed

Emersed, it is hard to distinguish from a standard H. polysperma. I have not been able to see any flowers yet but I’m hopeful that they will develop as days get shorter in autumn.

Hygrophila spec. ''Pantanal Wavy'' emerses

Hygrophila spec. ''Pantanal Wavy'' emersed

I have noticed some peculiarities with this plant, one being a marked mottling of leaves with darker and lighter areas, the other one being a splitting of the leaf into two separate tips.

Hygrophila spec. ''Pantanal Wavy'' mottling

Hygrophila spec. ''Pantanal Wavy'' mottling

Both traits did not appear regularly or added to the overall appearance. I suspect that they are brought about by a virus. They are not present in the land form of the plant, only in the submersed specimen.

Hygrophila spec. ''Pantanal Wavy'' forked leaf tip

Hygrophila spec. ''Pantanal Wavy'' forked leaf tip

Overall, the plant is probably a good addition to non-scapers’ tanks. It is quite hard to integrate into any planting layout because of ots straggly growth. Despite the long internodes, numerous side shoots are formed and if allowed to float, these will form “knots” of new growth. It is not as easy to keep as other H. polysperma types (if, indeed it is one) but it does tolerate higher temperatures. So its “garden-merit” to me is somewhat ambiguous.

Update: In the mean time, the plant has produced some flowers. I have dried a specimen which is awaiting identification by an expert. The flower is a typical Hygrophila flower:

Hygrophile "Pantanal Wavy" flower

Hygrophila "Pantanal Wavy" flower

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