Only 1 Side Shoot After Trimming Stems

RyanP

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28 Jul 2019
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Kleinwallstadt, Germany
So I have noticed that after trimming my stem plants only one new shoot ever appears on the trimmed stem. This seems to happen on all stem plants regardless of the type (A. Reineckii, rotala H'Ra, rotala indica etc.) Am I doing something wrong. I cut the stems with sharp scissors just above a node. Has this happened to anyone else? Or just could this just be a result of the generally poor plant growth I am currently experiencing...
 

tiger15

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14 Mar 2018
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USA
It’s only true with all the stem plants you have kept in your setup, but you can’t generalize for all stems you haven’t kept under different and favorable setups. With a few exceptions, stem plants as a group are more demanding.. I have CO2 but only medium light, and most stems including those you mentioned do poorly in my set up with weak growth, scarce branching, and bare bottom. However I have great success with easy stems such as Hornwort, pennywort and hygrophila polysperma that grew like weed with heavy branching and full bottom, no wonder they are banned as noxious weed in many places. With high light and heavy CO2 as in many Dutch setups, many difficult stems grow full and fast like weed.
 
Joined
3 Jan 2016
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Woking, UK
That’s certainly what I’m finding with Rotala walichii - only one shoot appears where I’ve cut a stem off. But replanting the cutting gives you double the number of growing shoots eventually.
 

Mick.Dk

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19 Jun 2012
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Dk
Short answer: yes ofcourse.......
Longer answer: Poducing new growth - including sideshoots - require the plant to invest stored energy. A plant already growing poorly, does ofcourse not have much energy to store (otherwise it would be growing better already) and therefore not energy enough to invest in a lot of new growth....... in this case more sideshoots. So it will only produce one sideshoot. Just to survive.
If stemplants are growing really poorly, they may actually not have enough stored energy to produce any new growth. In such a case you may kill them off, by performing a heavy trim. If in doubt, there is good reason to re-plant at least some of the off-cut tops. These will have the majority of however little stored energy that was stored in the stem - therefore more likely to keep growing.
 

RyanP

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28 Jul 2019
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Kleinwallstadt, Germany
That makes a lot of sense. I have been fighting with algae lately and have been trying to get my CO2 and flow dialed in but am not quite there yet. I am starting to see some more healthy growth on some other plants so I hope I am heading in the right direction. I have medium light and added an inline atomizer to my filter output last week to hopefully improve my CO2 distribution. Hope the combination of that and more frequent water changed will help turn things around. I removed all of my rotala, trimmed the bottoms of and replanted the tops. Will see if they recover:)
 

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