07-24-2010, 02:25 PM
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I suspect the cause is pruning the leaves (even though they may be mushy). Nymphaea lotus normally sends leaves to float on the surface, but if these are regularly pruned, the plant will remain in a submerged stage (i.e., smaller in height).
I have one of these bulbs now that has sent leaves to the surface, so I have not yet had it long enough to know if it will reverse its inclinations. I would siphon out the "mush" if the leaf breaks apart, but otherwise I would suggest letting the leaves remain. I do this with crypts when they melt, just hold the siphon over the mess and not touch the plant itself; it works with them.
I see you just joined today, so welcome to Tropical Fish Keeping forum.