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Old 03-25-2009, 10:00 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Good foreground plants for SE Asian biotopes?

I have been putting together a biotope for my Pearl Gouramis and Harlequin Rasboras, and trying to limit myself to plants from the regions these fish habitate (Malaysia, Thailand, Sumatra, Borneo, etc.).

The challenge for me (being a bit of a noob) has been to find a suitable foreground plant. An obvious choice would be downoi (pogostemon helferi), which would be a beautfiul color and texture contrast to the other plants I have in the tank (crypt balansae, c. moehlmannii, c. pontederiifolia, c. affinis, java fern, java moss, hygrophila difformis, and cyperus helferi).

But the tank is a 75g with four 40W T-12 bulbs in an ultra-cheap shop light fixtures with lousy reflectors, so it's relatively low/medium light, and (for the moment, at least) I'm not doing CO2, just glutaraldehyde. So I have doubts the downoi would flourish. Plus, I can't keep it from melting in a nano I have with mineralized soil capped with Aquasoil and lots of light.

Any suggestions?
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Old 03-25-2009, 11:24 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Good foreground plants for SE Asian biotopes?

You should get pressurized co2, and definitely up the lighting
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Old 03-25-2009, 04:53 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Good foreground plants for SE Asian biotopes?

Marsilea would grow in that amount of light and is a wonderful foreground. I'm not sure if it would be considered a SE Asian plant, but it is found pretty much everywhere.

There's a write-up about it in the PlantFinder.

-Dave
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Old 03-25-2009, 06:09 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Good foreground plants for SE Asian biotopes?

how about some hairgrass? it would definitely do better with your current lights than the pogostemon helferi.
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Old 03-26-2009, 08:19 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Good foreground plants for SE Asian biotopes?

Thanks for the suggestions, everyone. There was an article in this month's TFH on marsilea, I may have to try some of that, and eleocharis is widely available, so perhaps I'll try that, too.
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