No luck planting stem clippings
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No luck planting stem clippings

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No luck planting stem clippings
Old 02-03-2012, 02:26 AM   #1
 
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No luck planting stem clippings

Alright, so I have zero luck at planting stem clippings. I recently trimmed a few stems from my bacopa that were growing along the surface and had zero luck getting them to stay in the substrate (50/50 sand/floramax). I tried tweezers but whenever I would pull them out the stem would come with it, I tried pushing it down with my finger and covering the hole with another finger but it would just slip right out of the bottom and float to the surface, I tried just pushing it into the substrate (worked the best) but still came lose. I have never been able to get stems to stay put, the 6 stems of bacopa are probably there because I planted them as a mass and buried it deep during the initial aquascape. I've tried it with cuttings from the bacopa, pennywort, wisteria, and ludwiga. In bunches I can get them to stay but individual cuttings not a chance.

Any tips?
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Old 02-03-2012, 03:05 AM   #2
 
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Kangy how much of the stem are you actually trying to bury? I found that burying about an inch of the stem maybe an inch and half. Also some tricks I found to help is putting the stem in the substrate.
First being putting the stem on the substrate like an "L" being careful not to actually break the stem then push straight down with one finger. With the other hand push the substrate back as you are pulling your finger out.
This generally works 9/10 times for me.

The other thing I have done is pushing a stem under a rock or driftwood.
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Old 02-03-2012, 12:03 PM   #3
 
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I've tried that. I think I was also trying to plant them to close because I would get one in using that method but it would wiggle lose and float up when I tried the second. I was only doing it with one hand though, don't like having both arms buried in the tank lol. I think I'm going to put some sand in small bucket and practice haha
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Old 02-03-2012, 12:09 PM   #4
 
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ive had alot of luck, especially with my rotala wallichii, in using the "L" method boredomb does, only then I drag it an inch or so still pushing down to get it in there as far as I can. I use my thumb and middle finger to press the substrate back into my finger hole (no laughing) when I pull it out. never fails!
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Old 02-03-2012, 12:18 PM   #5
 
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lol (sorry couldn't resist) What I resorted to doing recently (and actually liked the look of) was sticking the stems in random holes on top of the large malaysian wood I have. I have a stem of wisteria, ludwiga, and anacharis fixed to holes in the wood.

Here's a picture from a couple weeks ago, the anacharis exploded after putting it in the wood, it now has about 6 arms growing along the surface.
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Old 02-03-2012, 04:44 PM   #6
 
If all else fails.....use a small stone placed on the cutting and later remove the stone once the plant takes root and anchors into the substrate...this is what I have to do with naja grass sometimes since it break so easy...
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Old 02-03-2012, 07:10 PM   #7
 
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I use the L shaped, stem drag and push method as well. It works, what can I say? ha ha
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Old 02-05-2012, 10:15 PM   #8
 
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I like the L method mentioned above but it doesn't work for me very often due to my cory cats. I found if I leave a set of leaves close to the bottom I can usually push some of my substrate over them to anchor the stems in. I have a mix of arganite and sand substrate. Hope this helps you some.
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Old 02-06-2012, 01:52 AM   #9
 
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I hate stem plants, and they hate me. If we were married, we'd end up on Jerry Springer throwing chairs at each other.

Forceps/tweezers don't work well for me because the mechanics only allow for manual closure, and not manual opening. Half the time, I just end up pulling the stem back out when I withdraw the forceps.

I use hemostats. If you don't have hemostats, needle nose pliers would be a second choice. I grasp the plant in the hemostats so that the stem is nearly parallel to the instrument, with the plant kind of laying back on my hand. The very end of the stem is between the very ends of the grasping surfaces. I insert the stem into the substrate. While keeping the instrument very still, I open the the grasping surfaces slowly and widely, letting the substrate fall back around the stem gently. I then slowly withdraw the hemostats at a 45 degree angle to the substrate and stem.

An equally effective technique is the use of very loud, very abusive language. You really have to intimidate the plant, shatter its self esteem, really assert yourself as the dominant life form. After all, you know how to use tools.
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Old 02-06-2012, 06:26 AM   #10
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MinaMinaMina View Post
I hate stem plants, and they hate me. If we were married, we'd end up on Jerry Springer throwing chairs at each other.

Forceps/tweezers don't work well for me because the mechanics only allow for manual closure, and not manual opening. Half the time, I just end up pulling the stem back out when I withdraw the forceps.

.
The first time I planted my stem plants, this is how I felt. I actually was in tears from frustration. I would get them in, turn around to get something else and they would be floating. Then after a few hours of struggling, I got them in. I was exhausted and went to bed. In the morning, they were floating again. I repeated the process and some of them stayed in. It is art, and I think it takes practice. I am still NOT good at it. I tend to end up with them in a tank in an area I didn't really want them. I have to plan my substrate rooted plants around the stems, not the other way around. ha ha
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