Name: Bacopa lanigera
A beautiful marsh plant, adaptable to aquatic environment. This species belongs to the Scrophulariaceae family, is larger than the others of its genus, and it also differs by the presence of countless little "hairs" on the thick stems and branches, forming its peculiar fluff. The leaves, almost round, are born in pairs at the knots and they are directly linked to them without the petiole (the "cable" that ties the blade - the leaf, properly - to the stem). In its immersed form, the stems and leaves are light-green, and may shoot roots from the knots, close to the leaves. It should be planted in the back part of the aquarium in small bundles of 5 or 6 stems, offering a beautiful aquascaping effect. It needs a lot of light to stay healthy. The water should have temperature around 26ºC, and be slightly acid (pH 6,5). It reproduces by cuttings. However, it is of difficult rootage: it is necessary to fasten the new sprouts well in the gravel, and to have plenty of patience with them. In its emmersed form, the leaves have the same format and size, being slightly darker green, and the stems usually tend to red. It produces beautiful flowers with five bluish petals when it receives sunlight frequently.
We had this plant in a 129 litre about 1 or 2 years ago, it was VERY EASY to grow, it grew like a weed that had to be continually trimmed back, and most of the time it wasn't even in gravel or substrate, it was just free floating and growing incredibly fast. We actually went away for a fortnight at one stage, and thought the light timer had been set but the switch to make it always on had been left on, so the lights were on for 2 weeks solid. On arrival back home, we discovered that this stuff and elodea had practically filled the tank. This plant was growing right up out the water and there were flowers all over it, it was a nice surprise considering we just thought it was a weed that grows fast and doesn't come out of the water. The fish were relieved when the lights went out, and I've only seen the flowers one other time (no the lights weren't left on the second time); after the lights went out and the plants died back a bit they continued to flourish underwater (without flowers obviously). We never let them grow out of water again. Anyway, point being, this can be an incredibly easy plant to grow given the right conditions. I was not using any plant fertilizer, CO2, etc. Just plain old water, light and fish poo. The temp was about 27°C and the pH was about 7.5.
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