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Need suggestions for floating plants

This is a discussion on Need suggestions for floating plants within the Plants for Enclosures and Vivariums forums, part of the Vivaria, Enclosures & Product Reviews category; I need suggestions for floating plants to put in my paludarium. The paludarium is 4' x 8' x 6' tall. ...

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Old 12th June 2017   #1 (permalink)
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Default Need suggestions for floating plants

I need suggestions for floating plants to put in my paludarium.
The paludarium is 4' x 8' x 6' tall. The lighting is 3' or so above the surface of the water, and appears to be sufficient for the terrestrial plants. However, I have tried water hyacinth and water lettuce, and I can't keep them alive, presumably due to the distance from the light.
I have a large water surface area that I would like to cover with floating plants.
Any ideas?



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Old 13th June 2017   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Need suggestions for floating plants

Hi Herpin Man, the two plants you've tried unsuccessfully are large and best used in pools and ponds under natural high intensity light and both are tender and killed by frosts if you do keep them outside.
I have success with salvinia. It looks good, grows quickly, easily controlled, its dangly roots provide shelter for young larvae and because of its rapid growth it'll mop those nitrates up. Oh, and it's tolerant of the lighting quality of an enclosure.
https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Salvinia_natans



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Old 16th June 2017   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Need suggestions for floating plants

If it can thrive under fluorescent lighting, it might be exactly what I'm looking for- thanks.



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Old 21st June 2017   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Need suggestions for floating plants

What about using things like immersed pothos or frogbit?



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Old 23rd June 2017   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Need suggestions for floating plants

I have ruled out frogbit, because (from what I've read) the upper surface of the leaves must stay dry, and I mist this enclosure.
I am trying to get some pothos started in water, but not much seems to be happening, other than the leaves turning yellow.
Although I am reasonably capable at keeping amphibians and reptiles alive, I don't seem to have the same success with plants.



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Old 24th June 2017   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Need suggestions for floating plants

You can always try duckweed, but once you get this in your enclosure it's almost impossible to get it out without completely cleaning it.



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Old 25th June 2017   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Need suggestions for floating plants

You could float 'oak leaf' water sprite (ceratopteris cornuta). It's leaves tend to be broader than the more common type of water sprite (ceratopteris thalictroides). Do quite well floating, sprending out and multiplying. And it's usually available on Ebay.



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Old 26th June 2017   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Need suggestions for floating plants

Salvinia works well (the small kind). I really like "Greater Duckweed". It's easier to control than ordinary duckweed (nightmare!!). The species is "Spirodela polyrhiza". I got some from Ebay a few months ago after not having it for a few years.



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Old 27th June 2017   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Need suggestions for floating plants

Most of my pond-type habitats for newts have Brazilian Pennywort in them. It's a floating bog-type plant that doesn't require strong light or ferts/CO2. The original plant I ordered years ago is now split up in several tanks. It's attractive, and newts like loafing among the leaves.



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Old 28th June 2017   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: Need suggestions for floating plants

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lertsch View Post
You could float 'oak leaf' water sprite (ceratopteris cornuta). It's leaves tend to be broader than the more common type of water sprite (ceratopteris thalictroides). Do quite well floating, sprending out and multiplying. And it's usually available on Ebay.
I'll second this! I'm a longtime fan of Ceratopteris. I currently use both species mentioned.



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Old 2 Weeks Ago   #11 (permalink)
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Default Re: Need suggestions for floating plants

I got some water sprite a few weeks ago. The guy at the fish store told me it would double in about a month. Instead, it is turning brown and shriveling up.
Although the lights are about 3' above the surface, all of my terrestrial plants are thriving.
I have not yet found Brazilian pennywort locally.



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