Bucephalandra project

Hanuman

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Sorry for the delayed response! I've had them growing with just natural light, under a desk lamp and on this shelf that has a Twinstar 600s rigged up. They do fine in all of these settings but really perk up under the Twinstar
You mist them everyday or open the jar regularly?

EDIT: scrap that. You already answered that before. Curious though how big is the jar?
 
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Hanuman

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Here is some update on the project.

I received all the bucephalandra plants by post on Tuesday. It took 7 days shipping from Indonesia. Here is what I got.
Bucephalandra "Green Spot"
Bucephalandraa "Melawi mini leaf"
Bucephalandra "Melawi"
Bucephalandra "Deep Purple"
Bucephalandra "Lamandau"
"Bucephalandra Moss"
Crepidomanes
Borneo Fern (Trident )

Here some pictures:
IMG_0525.JPGIMG_0482.JPG IMG_0481.JPG IMG_0476.JPG IMG_E0486.JPG IMG_0466.JPG IMG_0463.JPG IMG_0470.JPG IMG_0471.JPG IMG_0472.JPG IMG_0475.JPG IMG_0479.JPG
I got to talk to my bucephalandra grower. Here are some of the recommendations. This is what I was told so please don't shoot the messenger if you disagree with something:

Temperature: 26-28 °C (78.8-82.4 °F) for best results;
Co2: advisable. If no high-tech Co2 setup it is better to keep temperature below 28C and still inject Co2 with a DYI fermentation kit or the like;
TDS: under 100 is optimal; max 250;
PH: 5.5-7;
Light: medium lighting for optimal results;
Fertilizers: standard balanced NPK + Fe.
Water: preferably use RO water or rain water, this is to help keeping TDS under 100;
Substrate: use any kind of nutritious substrate. Aquasoil or the like will be fine as long as it buffers ph to 5.5-7. Bucephalandra feeds primarily from roots.
Submerged growth benefits: colorful leafs; flexible leafs;
Emersed growth benefits: fast(er) growing, less colors, stiff leafs.
Before adding to tank: wash plant throughly with tap water. Then do a 10/15 min potassium permanganate bath or hydrogen peroxide. Wash thoroughly again.

Recommendations: grow submerged due to it being easier and less prone to mold and bacterial infection. Emersed growth requires good ventilation and high levels of humidity. Growing emersed requires good husbandry to avoid mold and bacterial development. Plus if the plant is already in a submerged form it will require quite some time to adapt if brought to be emersed. Bucephalandara might fail to adapt completely and melt or even die if humidity is too low. It will also depend on variety. Some are more resilient than others.

Overall, if temperature, TDS, PH, light and co2 are not optimal then fertilizing won't do much.
 
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Hanuman

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Just wanted to give some quick update on the project.

The buce have been adapting slowly to their new environment but everything seems to be picking up now. Most clumps and rizhoms are producing new leafs. I have even spotted some flowers. Depending on the specie, meltdown has been more or less extensive. I suspect those species that have experience serious meltdown were not grown by the grower but collected in the wild and sold as is without propagation. I contacted the grower and after insisting my suspicions were actually correct. I was initially unaware of this. This is to show that there are still some people who care little about preserving the habitat of the plants.

Anyhow I have added 1 mid-sized zebra nerite snail and a dozen of cherry shrimps to help keep the tank clear of algae. I never feed. The tank also is filled with pond snails that also help keep things nice and clear. I have also added plant cuttings on the surface (as floating plants) from my other 2 tanks to absorb excess nutrients produced by snails, shrimps and contained within the substrate. I have also added a 100ml bag of Purigen in the filter to keep the water crystal clear and excess dissolved organic matter. Plant cuttings I have added are:

1. Ludwigia palustrus
2. Ludwigia repen
3. Rotala indica "red"
4. Rotala indica "green"
5. Hygrophilia Polysperma "Rosanervig"

They all produce long roots. I will be removing those cuttings progressively as they are growing fast and preventing light to get through to the Buce. I will share some pictures later on today when I get back home.

I also wanted to share this < channel I found on Youtube > on how to grow Buce emersed. I am sure this will be of help to those wanting to grow Buce that way. Videos are very informative in my opinion.
 

Hanuman

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Not much updates here because this project has not gone the way I wanted it but that's because of my ignorance.

There was a lot of melt down for the first couple of weeks due to adaptation. Most plants then stabilized and started producing new leafs but they remained small and white/pinkish for a long time. This clearly was due to a severe deficiency which I ignored and only started to deal with around 2 months ago. Since then plants have started flowering regularly but the shoots with the old small leafs have not changed in size. I think I need to trim those to allow the buce to produce new leafs.
 

dw1305

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Hi all,
remained small and white/pinkish for a long time. This clearly was due to a severe deficiency which I ignored and only started to deal with around 2 months ago. Since then plants have started flowering regularly but the shoots with the old small leafs have not changed in size. I think I need to trim those to allow the buce to produce new leafs.
I'd definitely leave the old pale leaves on. The reason they haven't greened up is that they were deficient in a non-mobile element (presumably iron (Fe)), but Aroids only produce leaves very slowly and removing these will remove some photosynthetic tissue.

I'm pretty sure pruning won't make them produce leaves any more quickly, and eventually the plant will shed them, when it's ready.

cheers Darrel
 

Hanuman

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I'm pretty sure pruning won't make them produce leaves any more quickly, and eventually the plant will shed them, when it's ready.
Thank you Darrel.

I was not expecting the plant to produce leaves more quickly by pruning. I though that by pruning it would allow the plant to focus its energy into producing healthy leaves rather than maintaining crooked ones.

I will do as advised.
 

dw1305

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Hi all,
I though that by pruning it would allow the plant to focus its energy into producing healthy leaves rather than maintaining crooked ones.
Possibly but plants are usually pretty good at focussing their resources to gain maximum photosynthetic advantage. When the plant is ready it will withdraw any mobile nutrients and then shed those leaves.

If it had been a mobile element the plant could have moved the deficient element into the leaves and plant would have greened up, but because it was a non-mobile one there isn't anything the plant can do to make the leaf greener.

It is probably still a net contributor to plant health.

cheers Darrel
 

Onoma1

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Rochdale
I also wanted to share this < channel I found on Youtube > on how to grow Buce emersed. I am sure this will be of help to those wanting to grow Buce that way. Videos are very informative in my opinion.
Sorry to hear about the problems you have experienced.

I tried out the approach suggested in the Another World Terraria video about six weeks ago with some pieces of Buce (that were performing poorly in the tank) as an experiment to see if I could revive them. It seems to be working out reasonably well - if very slowly. I made a few changes to the suggested approach based on what I had available and some additional advice on this forum on cultivation of Buce:

1. Used sterilized (microwaved) John Innes Number 3 rather than the substrate suggested;
2. I placed the Buce in a sterilized clip lid tupperware container;
3. I used an Ikea Krydda cultivation unit with very extended photoperiods; and
4. I sprayed with Canna Rhizotonic at the start.

Initially, the leaves started to slowly die back, however, new ones slowly formed below the old leaves. The picture below has two types of Buce in it. The one to the left was a piece of Biblis. The new emersed leaves on this one look more like Buce Pygmaea. The other piece came from e-bay as 'Pear'. The leaves on the second piece retained their original shape, however, are much larger.

At the moment I think this is working reasonably well and I will leave it be for a few more months to see how it develops. I am clear that it doesn't look as lush as the ones on the Youtube but hope that a bit of patience may be rewarded.

If you are experiencing problems - and you have invested so much in your Buce - I would suggest trying out this approach with a few fragments.
 

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Hanuman

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If you are experiencing problems - and you have invested so much in your Buce - I would suggest trying out this approach with a few fragments.
Problem is that growing them emersed makes them less attractive to the aquaria hobby. If for use in a terrarium it's fine but if the plan is to reintroduce them to the water then the plant will need to readapt again.

So far what I have noticed is that some buce species adapt better than others at being fully submerged. Perhaps in their habitat some species are more exposed to being seasonally submerged than others. The two Melawi species I have are the ones which are struggling the most at producing new leaves under water. Also those two as well as the Deep Purple were grown emersed when I purchased them which explains why those 3 species have lost most of their leaves.
 

tiger15

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Are there any Buce you can collect in Thailand, or they are endemic in Boneo?

I can't resist to comment that the Buddha head is too overwhelming drawing attention from the tank. A small one or one that can sit inside the tank would be nicer.
 

Hanuman

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Are there any Buce you can collect in Thailand, or they are endemic in Boneo?
Bucephalandra are endemic to Borneo so they can't be found in Thailand.

I can't resist to comment that the Buddha head is too overwhelming drawing attention from the tank. A small one or one that can sit inside the tank would be nicer.
I bought the Buddha head from a collector many years ago so it was only placed there because I had no where else to put it considering its weight and size (41 Kg). It was in a box on the floor after we moved in, and that alone for a buddhist is sacrilege. Buddha should always be placed above other things and never on the floor. Also you will never see Buddha heads in temples or people houses. You will always see a full body Buddha. A Buddha head-only is considered disrespectful and using it as a decorating object is rather objectionable (from a buddhist stand point), so putting it in a tank is a no go.
I have removed the Buddha head from where it was as I have found a new place to put it. Now I have my wabikusa and other plants sitting next to the buce tank.
 

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