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differences between E tenellus and E tenellus 'micro'

4650 Views 2 Replies 3 Participants Last post by  ed seeley
what are the differences between these two swords?
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There are atleast two variants of Echinododus tenellus. One has leaves which are approximately 1/8" (5mm) wide. The leaf length of this chain sword can range from 3-4 inches to over 10" tall; the longer leaves can occur with lower light and more crowded conditions. The other variant has narrower leaves ~1/16" (~2mm) and typically stays short (1-3"). But it can also grow a bit taller. Under bright light the leaves of the "micro" variety may turn reddish.
In the literature, both have been called pygmy chain sword plants. About 10 years ago, the smaller one was called E.tenellus var. tenellus. Now they are all generally lumped into the single species of E. tenellus.

There are pictures of each in this old link I still have on my server.

You will also see a picture of "Veronica" sword. This plant developed by a hobbyist in the Ukraine was sent to me in 1998 by his friend, Alexei Bednii of Moldovia. Years later it found its way to Tropica (thru Karen Randall) and it is now sold under the trade name 'Red Diamond.'
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I thought these chain-forming species were now in Helanthium? So these are Helanthium tenellum now regardless of their form?

I have a very narrow leaved form that goes red under good light, but it gets up to 8" tall, but I believe it is the one sold as 'micro'; unless there's a taller narrow leaved reddish form?
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