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The

Aquatic Gardener

Journal of the Aquatic Gardeners Association, Inc.

Volume 23 Number 3
www.aquatic-gardeners.org

July – Sept 2010

Thus. either you love his layouts or you don’t…. and he agreed to do his best and to deliver the tank at the show. Oliver Knott was contracted to set up a 250 L [66gal. Freshwater Biological Laboratory. As always. cided that this required some kind of celebration. the people behind the fasting growing aquatic plant forum in Europe (UKAPS.S. Why not do something that no one has done before? And then the idea matured that the InterZoo show should be the place to demonstrate that the company still belongs among the world’s top aquarium plant nurseries. soon will be able to buy Tropica plants as the new 1-2-Grow tissue culture plants that are free from algae and other pests are now ready for market. and yet. The trade show is not open to the public. University of Copenhagen Photos by the author. Volume 23  Number 3  7 . Oliver set up the tank in his own showroom and delivered it to the venue three days before the show started to allow the fragile stem plants to recover from the transportation. We knew that we had to do New Plants at InterZoo 2010 Preparations Tropica Aquarium Plants was founded 40 years ago and it was de- Oliver Knott. Troels Andersen of Tropica and I also volunteered to set up a tank. Oliver’s tank was the subject of much discussion. We transported three 250 L grown-in tanks almost 1000 km from Denmark to Germany—a nerve-wracking experience on the old bumpy German ‘autobahns’. This article describes the new plants that were revealed at InterZoo 2010 and there is hope that aquarists in the U. InterZoo in Nuremberg. He now has his own studio in Germany. Oliver’s tank was the only to show all eight new plants in the same tank. Hence.000 producers. see article page 16) also came over to set up a tank and so did the owner of Green Machine (a UK high-end shop). Germany is Europe’s largest aquarium exhibition. In May.] tank three months before the show. That was easy— but one tank would not be enough to impress the demanding audience at InterZoo. probably Europe’s best aquascaper.Ole Pedersen. it is able to attract more than 10. wholesalers and shopkeepers from all over the world. I joined Tropica Aquarium Plants to help set up their stand and maintain the tanks during the show. had created a tank for the Tropica stand.

The plant in the back (both left and right) is the new Myriophyllum mattogrossense. Sunday morning and a couple of drowsy staff showed up to help us get the tanks into the van. our very best so as not to set an embarrassing example in this famous field of internationally recognized aquascapers. We had to turn around. We wanted to make sure that we would not cause 8  The Aquatic Gardener Volume 23  Number 3  9 .(driftwood and rocks) was fixed to the bottom of the aquarium and sliding substrate was avoided by molding in a plastic mesh in the substrate. George Farmer and Dan Crawford came to Tropica three months before the show and created the tank. We had brought with us 1000 L of ‘Tropica water’—a mixture of tap water and reverse osmosis water. How embarrassing—especially for someone who thinks he is normally very well organized. Some initial tests were performed because we have always been told that you cannot transport a grown-in tank over such distances (it is nearly 1000 km [621 miles] from Tropica in Denmark to Nuremberg in Germany where the InterZoo show takes place). The tanks grew well and all developed as expected over the next three months. we realized that we had forgotten one tank—the small grown-in tank with the new 1-2-Grow plants that had turned into a magnificent tank over the past three months. Whoops! After the first 100 km. which was then transported as a grown-in aquascape nearly 1000 km to Nuremberg in Germany. we were disappointed that there were almost 100 km more than expected but Troels and I were excited and we had Unpacking the Tanks at the Venue The next day. Troels Andersen came up with a solid solution where all decoration material fresh rolls and cheese in the car so we felt invincible. Please note the dense carpet of Helanthium tenellum (previously Echinodorus tenellus). Off we went! When we switched on the GPS. Troels and I met at Tropica at 5am. The Trip to Nuremberg The tank created by the people behind the United Kingdom Aquatic Plant Society (UKAPS). They all looked very good indeed and both shrimps and fish were still alive although we had removed most of the water and only kept the aquascape wet with moist newspaper. We pulled up all the dying plants and tried to establish a carpet of Glossostigma elatinoides. The day came and it was time to pack up all the tanks and leave for InterZoo. We managed to sneak into the lab and pick up the tank without anyone noticing. currently the fastest growing forum in Europe. except for the tank set up by Green Machine. where the dense carpet of Marsilea hirsuta suddenly started dying as the roots became infected by a fungus. We worked like mules for a couple of hours and then we were ready to go. we unpacked the tanks at the venue. The ‘Moss bridge’ aquascape created by Troels Andersen of Tropica and the author.

Monday night at 8pm all of the tanks were ready and it looked very promising given the fact that the tanks had two more days to recover before the show started. At first sight. What a fantastic feeling. It was decided that these tanks should be newly established to demonstrate that it is possible to set up a tank so that it looks nice from Day 1. Tropica as well as the Italian aquarium plant nursery. Green or milky water is history! The New Plants Tropica presented eight new plants at InterZoo 2010. However. It is suitable as a background plant and creates a wonderful focal point in both smaller and larger groups (see the photo of the UKAPS tank). The most popular was without any doubt Hygrophila pinnatifida. The new tanks proved to be a real challenge. the 300 L Malawi cichlid tank with Anubias. conifer-like stems. It attaches to all sorts of surfaces and can be used equally well growing in the substrate as well as on driftwood and rocks. we had brought two custom built diatom filters with a capacity of 3. The plant is fast-growing and spreads all over the tank. it all looked exactly as when we emptied the tanks 36 hours earlier. as they continued to become milky throughout the show. We had moved three 250 L tanks more than 1000 km along old bumpy highways and we didn’t even have to correct one single piece of driftwood or rock. provided that you are willing to invest a little extra in more mature plants or plants on driftwood and rocks. and it is able to get a foothold on almost any kind of substrate. all we had to do was to fill the tanks and remove a few bad-looking leaves. Volume 23  Number 3  11 . Hygrophila pinnatifida is attractive because the leaf shape is different from all other plants in our hobby. Also Pogostemon erectus turned out to be a real attraction. Anubias. Another new plant that presented itself really well during the show is the Polygonum sp. Pogostemon erectus comes from India and it forms compact groups of bright green. Hygrophila pinnatifida is from Goa in India and was brought to Germany in 2008 by Alfred Waser. It is more difficult than Hygrophila pinnatifida and needs intense light to stay compact for a longer period. In Christel Kasselmann’s Hygrophila pinnatifida and Vesicularia ferriei ‘Weeping’ in Oliver Knott’s tank at the Tropica stand.500 L per hour and after just half an hour of filtration. Crinum and Vallisneria was set up just prior to the show. Thus. 10  The Aquatic Gardener Hygrophila pinnatifida showing its epiphytic capabilities. The tap water in Nuremberg is quite soft compared to Danish tap water but Oliver had used similar water so it should be okay. Later the same day.tropica. Both Tropica and the upcoming Italian aquarium plant nursery.com) to show how these filters are constructed and how effective they are. Also. He was much more relaxed and asked us to fill it up using plain tap water. The water became milky the day after. especially the Malawi tank and the tank with XL plants looked pretty sad the following morning. it may look like a species of Eriocaulon but is in fact a Pogostemon. Troels is planning an article for the new Tropica website (www. are currently selling it. they looked like a million bucks.any stress to the plants by providing water of unknown chemical composition. Anubias. Oliver Knott arrived with his tank. The plant is easy to culture and it spreads almost too well once introduced to the tank. showed this plant and it was used in practically all major show tanks at InterZoo. The following day we set up an additional two 250 L tanks with extra large plants and plants on driftwood and rocks. and it is my experience that it grows well even in a tank without CO2. But we had to filter those tanks every morning before the show started. Hygrophila pinnatifida was perhaps the most popular plant at the show and it appeared in numerous aquascapes created by Jan Ole Pedersen and Oliver Knott.

I like the weeping moss in particular as it is different from most other mosses in our tanks. hanging moss with teardrop-like bright green shoots. the leaves were much less colored. It is fast growing and requires a good deal of nutrition. The plant in the foreground with the odd-looking leaves is Hygrophila pinnatifida. It needs to be pruned frequently to maintain its bushy form. with very beautiful red leaves. but during the show it developed into a magnificent plant. Tropica presented an additional three new plants: Echinodorus ‘Vesuvius’. Colored plants are always attractive. Myriophyllum mattogrossense from Brazil is a new water milfoil with coarse and strong filaments in the dissected leaves. It needs to be tied onto driftwood or other decoration material as the rhizoids it develops do not Volume 23  Number 3  13 Polygonum sp.The new Aponogeton crispus ‘Red’ (with beautiful floating leaves) and Pogostemon erectus (to left behind the dense Eleocharis parvula).to slow-growing and it creates relatively few leaves on the water surface as compared to the common Aponogeton crispus. Its moderate height makes this Aponogeton eye-catching and the most decorative effect is obtained with a bright green background. Lindernia rotundifolia and Vesicularia ferriei ‘Weeping’. It is moderate. it is a fleshy. To achieve the desirable deep purple leaves it requires high light and plenty of nutrients. The leaves had not yet achieved the desired intense red color when the tank was moved to Nuremberg. the many floating leaves in the photo are due to the relatively shallow tank (35 cm. The plant has relatively short internodes and shows a much more compact growth form than is common within the genus Polygonum. when we left Tropica. 14 in. Myriophyllum mattogrossense is relatively easy to grow and is suitable for the background. she confirms that the species has not yet been identified although it has flowered on several occasions both in her aquarium and at Tropica. and Aponogeton crispus ‘Red’ is no exception.). 12  The Aquatic Gardener . It looks a little like the Microsorum pteropus ‘Trident’ but the filaments are much coarser. new book [see TAG 23–2]. The plant developed in a magnificent color during the show. It survived the transportation quite well and I believe it is an attractive plant both in Oliver Knott’s layout and in the Moss Bridge that Troels and I created. A new Microsorum pteropus variety? The plant was shown in one of the Indonesian stands but no one was able to supply us with a scientific name. Aponogeton crispus ‘Red’ is an interesting culture with purple curly leaves.

The fan is noisy and I could not imagine using an Elos LED lamp in my living room because of the constant humming. The new 1-2-Grow product attracted much attention. We should also see a cheaper product. whereas the tank to the right shows how the tank looks just after set-up.tv CEAB  www.com AquaNet TV  “INTERZOO 2010 .aquatic-plants. this product will probably never replace the kind of plants we know as they are small and often don’t look like the ‘adult’ plant at all. as the production costs are significantly lower.com Ole Pedersen  www.com. The only thing that customs 14  The Aquatic Gardener Other News from InterZoo 2010 Plants were not the only news at InterZoo 2010.tropica. nematodes and fungi.ceabacquari. nematodes.The Tropica product 1-2-Grow. All their lamps use high-output LEDs and they come with and without reflectors with various angles. The price is high but the design is extremely attractive. The plants come directly from the tissue laboratory and may thus be exported all over the world since pests and soils are no longer an issue.com/en Aquarama  www. Here. The tank to the left shows 3 month old 1-2-Grow plants from only one cup each. In summary. The lights are 7 Watt diode lamps from the Italian company CEAB. Elos is another Italian company that offers great LED lights. take a look at the company’s website where the complete product range is shown.sg Volume 23  Number 3  15 . However. There is another player on the European market. this product promises a new era. attach very firmly to the either wood or rock material. particularly if you are looking for light for your nano aquarium.aquarama. Lighting means LED these days and things are developing fast. snails. The feature is in German only but it is definitely still worth watching.thegreenmachineonline. However.aquanet. some great products to display. Anubias from Italy. their high-output LEDs produce a lot heat and they use active cooling (a little fan) instead passive cooling as used in CEAB’s products and this makes them less attractive.oliver-knott. Weeping moss is believed to originate from China and has previously been distributed by Oriental Aquarium Plants. snails and other annoying pests.com Green Machine  www. The plants are sold in small cups free from any pests such as algae. fungi. who sells a similar product. The Italian company CEAB had Tropica Aquarium Plants  www. There is no soil nor pests of any sort. 1-2-Grow – Tissue Culture Plants Directly from the Lab 1-2-Grow was perhaps the attraction of the show at Tropica’s stand. InterZoo 2010 was a huge experience and it was great to see that product development within our hobby is as fast as ever and new technologies are constantly being implemented to the benefit of the aquarist. The price is still high though and it will probably be another year or two before we see LED light completely replacing metal halides and fluorescent light. Tissue culture plants sold in this way offer many advantages for the aquarist as the plants are easily shipped all over the world. Next year’s show at Aquarama in Singapore will probably reveal that LED technology has already got a firm hold in the market and then we can look forward to a much more carbon-friendly way of illuminating our planted tanks. Their tissue culture plants are sold under the name ‘Linea Cup’. there is no need for a space-consuming nursery anymore.eloseurope. I cannot imagine a greater light source. agents have to worry about is whether the plant is on the invasive species list. 1-2-Grow is tissue culture plants sold directly in small plastic cups free from algae. Troels Andersen of Tropica explains the benefits of the new product to AquaNet TV (see the web site address below). But for rarities.dk Olver Knott  www.40 Jahre Wasserpflanzen von Tropica aus Dänemark”  www.it Elos  www.