I Love Ludwigia! - El Natural - Aquatic Plant Central

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El Natural Diana Walstad's low-maintenance, soil-based 'El Natural' method for keeping plants and fish.

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Old 09-16-2020, 04:52 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default I Love Ludwigia!

I saw some bunches of this beautiful plant at my LFS a few months ago and asked about it. "It's called Ludwigia Repens", the fish store lady answered. I then asked, "Can it grow without CO2?" and she answered that she recommends CO2 for it to thrive. Well, I bought one bunch to try anyway. When planted in my 40G, It grew well right from the start. The closer it got to the surface (light), the redder it got. So I started cutting them in half and replanting the tops and leaving the bottoms in place. The tops continued to grow and the bottoms mostly slit and grew two new tops! This stuff was growing so fast that within a couple weeks I was able to spread it out to my two other El Natural tanks. Then, about a week ago this one stem had grown to the surface, but Instead of trimming in half (I was running out of room in all my tanks), I just let it go. As you can see in the second picture, it's growing up out of the water! My first emergent plant growth! This is why I built special lids to make a 4-5" gap between the water surface and the light. That's right Ms Walstad, I'm taking the aerial advantage! I love Ludwigia. For me, It is performing really well. I highly recommend it for El Natural tanks.
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Old 09-16-2020, 05:06 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: I Love Ludwigia!

Good for you! If only my Ludwigia would grow as good as yours. They're growing but not as fast as I'd like, leaf is sometimes stunted and twisted and some develops holes in it. I think my tank didn't have the nutrients it needs to thrive I don't know.

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Old 09-17-2020, 01:29 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: I Love Ludwigia!

There is something special in your tank that makes this plant really take off. Just light would not be the trigger. The co2 and nutrients are also matched in your tank I believe.


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Old 09-17-2020, 08:11 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: I Love Ludwigia!

No CO2. No ferts except for the very occasional squirt of Easy Green. Fluval plant spectrum light. This is a good light. And there is no glass or plastic between the light and the water.
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Old 09-19-2020, 03:56 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: I Love Ludwigia!

Yes, beautiful plants in your tank. Ludwigia came in many varieties. I think yours is Repens AKA broad leaf Ludwigia. I have narrow leaf Ludwigia which is a repens hybrid. It grows well in my tank with green and orange. There is a red variety called Ludwigia Super Red that I am trying, not as easy as narrow leaf so far but hope to get better.
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Old 10-02-2020, 02:04 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: I Love Ludwigia!

I love Ludwigia Repens too! And Cabomba. But unfortunately both have been declared as a biohazard where I live so I don't like my chance of finding either for sale. It's strange that the authorities have targeted Ludwigia as there are no recorded infestations yet it seems. There are other varieties for sale but repens was always my favourite. It grows like a weed in soil, especially semi emersed out of water - its a true marsh plant.

Cabomba has gotten so out of control that its on the states top 10 noxious weed list. NSW Australia. Seems I will have to get in love with another variety of ludwigia.
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Old 10-02-2020, 02:15 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: I Love Ludwigia!

I stand corrected. Cabomba Caroliniana is on our NSW State's top-32 list of noxious weeds, which came as a surprise to me since this list includes mostly terrestrial plants that are well known and notorious in Australia, and we have very little fresh water. That Cabomba has made that list is disturbing and shocking.

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