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LUDWIGIA BREVIPES

Hardiness: Easy
Light Needs: Medium
Plant Structure: Stem
Family: Onagraceae
Genus: Ludwigia
Region: North America
Location: southeastern United States
Size: Stem width: 4-6cm (1.5-2.5in)
Growth Rate: Fast
Can Be Grown Emersed: Yes

Description:

Ludwigia brevipes is native to the southeastern U.S., where it can be found growing in palustrine (swampy) environments near the Atlantic coast. This species is not typically available through aquatic plant retailers, but it is distributed by the Oriental Aquariums company in Singapore and is frequently maintained by many hobbyists who often sell or trade it.

Adequate light (2 or more watts per gallon) is the most important aspect of successful submersed culture in L. brevipes. Macro- and micronutrient fertilizers are also appreciated by this species, particularly if CO2 injection is used. Low nitrate and high phosphate levels will stimulate a redder (sometimes orange) coloration in the shoot apexes of the stems. Emersed culture is possible under conditions of good light. Conclusive differentiation of this species between the very similar L. arcuata is usually only possible in an emersed state, wherein the stems of L. brevipes are glabrous (smooth) and those of L. arcuata are very slightly pubescent (hairy).

To prune this fast-growing stem plant, simply take a pair of scissors and trim the stems like a hedge. The plant will rapidly produce lateral shoots and will become even bushier. The method of propagation in L. brevipes is similar to that of most stem plants that develop a wealth of lateral shoots�just prune one off and replant it.

L. brevipes is most effective in the aquascape when planted in fore- to midground groups and next to plants that will showcase its delicate, graceful, and subtly-colored shoots. Among the most effective of these are Micranthemum umbrosum and Bacopa australis.

Photo #1 Submersed: US and International Copyright 2004 by Nikolay All Rights Reserved.

Photo #2 Submersed: US and International Copyright 2004 by Nikolay All Rights Reserved.

Photo #3 Submersed: US and International Copyright 2004 by Jay Luto All Rights Reserved.