Nymphaea sp. lilies

Kattis

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I used to have very prolific red Nymphea lily that would put out at least few leafs a week until it decided that enough was enough and kind of stopped. It didn’t die completely off but make one or two tiny leaves to keep ticking over. I’ve replanted in fluorite black substrate about 18 months ago but it has just kept on its not quite dead but not far of regime

I got another new tuber, to see if it was just my individual that didn’t play ball, which took month or two before getting around to making any leaves and now in few weeks it has perked up but is still very small.

I’m wondering if there’s any particular reason they are not feeling like growing, wrong season for the new one perhaps? No rest period for the old one? The tank has medium level lighting, EI ferts and easycarbo daily, fluorite black substrate and bonus root tabs
 

zozo

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They do not need a resting periode :) What it needs is ample light and a well fertilized substrate.. Best is a soft clay based substrate or some clay tabs at its roots.

It's size and willingness to grow depends highly on both. If there aint enough light it will refuse to make floaters.. For most species it is one or the other, at enough light it starts making floaters and it stops developing new submersed leaves the old ones will slowly die off. with less light but still enough it only makes submersed leaves. If enough light but not enough food it will very sparsly create small sized floaters with less light small sized submersed leaves.

In this there are slight variations in variety of Lily. Most out there are hybrids and a few original species. What also plays a role in how it develops is the type of tuber. The winter hardy types do have real tubers in 2 different types and there is a 3th tropical tuber type, from the top off my head i only know the tropical one that is called Mexicana tuber, it is recognizable that it has a lot more root structure and not a typical bulb. As for example the Tiger Lily in the lfs trade has this Mexicana tuber. These are the most demanding lilies that also next to ample light and sufficient feeding require higher temperatures to thrive.

Than :) for the more temporate varieties, also the tuber size is responsible for the plant size. This tuber stores energy.. An old tuber can grow new little tubers as vegetative reproduction... Eventualy when requirments for the old tuber to thrive are supressed it can go dormant. Than only the new small tubers which require less energy grow small submersed plantlets.

They are pretty complex plants to fully understand.. As if they have a mind of their own. I some cases it seems a mother chooses to stop growing to give priority to its offspring. Depending on the parameters it recieves it can take years for this small offspring to grow some body. Offspring again thrives on the energy the tuber can provide.

:)

Thus you need to know your lily.. To know what it likes and needs. :thumbup:
And
prolific red Nymphea
unfortunately doesn't give much clues..
 

Kattis

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Thanks for very thorough info! Unfortunately both of my bulbs are eBay wonders and what they might be is anyone’s guess. They do look different from each other, the new one has darker blotches (sorry, not very technical term) while the old one had uniform coloured leaves. In the pic you can just about see both of them, old one is visible on right side with couple of small paler leaves peaking out of the soil

cf6b750ee3d8ba8fba8f75de05a34900.jpg
 

Mick.Dk

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Biggest plant is Nymphaea lotus (former N. zenkeri) and the smaller plant could well be Nymphaea pubescens. Both species have quite large variations in appearance, due to being geographically very videspread. Both can be more or less red or green in submersed leaves.
N. Lotus allmost allways have some dark spotting in leaves and white, scented flowers only open at night.
N. Pubescens I have never seen with spotted leaves. Flowers can be white or pink/purple and as I recall are flowering during day.
Marcel is spot on, advising a very rich substrate for good development of Nymphaea species.
Be aware that both of these species can actually grow VERY large, taking more than a square meter of surface (but can usually be trimmed to stay a more moderate size in aquaria).
 

Kattis

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After some googling for pics I think you’re spot on that they are different species. I’m actually hoping one of them will start growing huge as my tank is fairly deep at 60cm+ and I left plenty of space. Of course I’ll still have to keep trimming it but I quite liked the way N. pubescens made both floating and underwater type of leaves. Maybe yet more root sticks will help it to get going
 

zozo

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The N. pubescens or Hairy water lily also goes under the synonym N. Rubra (if it's a red one) can be recognized as it grows and matures from growing distinct hairy stems, Hence Pubes - Pubic hair - Body hair. :) It looks a bit like in this close up. But this is a completely different lily, a cultivar and i don't know from what.
dscf5121-kopie-jpg.jpg


More lilies grow this hairs but less distinctly than the N. pubescens.
dscf5234-jpg.jpg


Diggin through google images you might find closups from it searching Nymphaea pubescens or Rubra. I know they are out there but than you have to dig.. :)

N. pubescens is a tropical day flower lily and the N. zenkeri is a tropical night flower lily. I'm not sure if there is a different light requirment for both types.
All lilies are sun worshippers and love lots of light to thrive.. I have no personal experience with growing true tropicals, (Matter a fact i failed 3 times with N.glandulifera) but do experience some sp. under dymamic light conditions grow floaters at an earlier stage than others.
 

three-fingers

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They do not need a resting periode :) What it needs is ample light and a well fertilized substrate.. Best is a soft clay based substrate or some clay tabs at its roots.
I learnt a lot from that post, thanks! :)

I've had a lily tuber for many years that I've been taking out and giving a "rest" period in a tub of damp sphagnum for a couple of months every year whenever it stops growing, after reading your post, it seems I may not need to be going through this effort and may just be stressing it :lol:. It does always start growing very well after the damp rest, but this could just be because I usually put it back in the tank when doing a clean (so water change, plant trim, filter clean, big dose of ferts) so growing conditions are at their best again.
They are pretty complex plants to fully understand.. As if they have a mind of their own. I some cases it seems a mother chooses to stop growing to give priority to its offspring. Depending on the parameters it receives it can take years for this small offspring to grow some body. Offspring again thrives on the energy the tuber can provide.
My one is certainly very fussy lol! It's has split many times, and the main bulb (rhizome?) normally stops growing after some smaller bulbs split off. It's a night flowering species (it's flowered a couple of times), I think I bought it as "green tiger lotus" but can't remember the exact species. I'm going to replant it in a pot this weekend so I really hope it wakes up again, I already gave away the babies that split off it so will have to get a new one if it's time has come.
 
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