Vegetative Reproduction

Vegetative reproduction is well known to aquarists. Some aquatic plants (Cryptocoryne) reproduce by rhizomes, others (Val-limeria, Sagittaria) by roots. In the genus Echinodorw new plants arise on flower stems in the axil of the flowers. Many species of aquatic plants reproduce through large or small portions being able to root and continue growing after being removed from the parent plant. In the genera Ludwigia, Elodea, Ammonia, Alter-nanthera, and Hygrophila new cuttings are commonly taken from the axil of the main plant. This ability to produce new roots is so strong in some species that even parts of the leaves will root (examples: Bacopa amplexicaulis, Hygrophila polysperma).

Many aquarium plants like Ludwigia develop roots very quickly and are very easy to propagate.

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Rooting young Echinodorus paniculatus are easily, separated and replanted. When grown under the best of conditions this species can produce more growth than desired. Photo by G.J.M. Timmerman.

Another method of vegetative reproduction is use of the roofs themselves. If we separate the roots from the mother plant, new rooting plants arise from the dormant buds which then become independent plants. This is an especially useful process in plants with long creeping rootstocks such as Anubias, Lagenandra, and Acorus. In perennial plants without creeping rootstocks, for example Echinodorus, new plants will grow from the outer edges of the round base of the root. Roots of some plants can be divided into 2 to 6 parts. This is possible with many members of the family Ara-ceae. With some Aponogeton and with larger Echinodorus vegetative propagation usually takes place spontaneously, with exceptions. The exceptions will be mentioned under the descriptions of the individual species.

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