8-10 trimmed stems.
Rotala macrandra is a beautiful and vibrant aquarium plant highly regarded for its colorful foliage.
1. **Leaf Appearance:** The distinguishing feature of Rotala macrandra is its vivid red or pink leaves. The leaves are typically narrow and lance-shaped, adding an eye-catching and stunning contrast to the greenery in the aquarium. The intensity of the red coloration can vary depending on environmental conditions, particularly light and nutrients.
2. **Growth Habit:** This plant has a stem plant growth habit, which means it grows vertically with multiple stems branching out from the base. Regular pruning and maintenance are needed to prevent it from overshadowing other plants in the aquarium.
3. **Lighting:** Rotala macrandra requires high-intensity lighting to maintain its striking red or pink color. Providing ample light is essential to stimulate and preserve the vibrant pigments in the leaves.
4. **CO2 and Nutrients:** This plant benefits from supplemental carbon dioxide (CO2) and nutrient supplementation. Providing CO2 and a balanced liquid fertilizer can promote vigorous growth and enhance its coloration.
5. **Water Parameters:**
- **Temperature:** It thrives in a temperature range of 72-82°F (22-28°C).
- **pH:** Maintain a slightly acidic to neutral pH level, typically between 6.0 and 7.5.
- **Hardness:** It can tolerate a range of water hardness.
6. **Maintenance:** Regular pruning is necessary to keep the plant in shape and encourage bushy growth. Trim the upper shoots to control its height and prevent it from becoming too leggy.
7. **Substrate:** Plant Rotala macrandra in a nutrient-rich substrate or use root tabs to provide essential nutrients for its growth.
8. **Propagation:** This plant can be propagated by taking cuttings and replanting them. Each cutting should have roots attached.
Rotala macrandra is a favorite among aquascapers and advanced aquarium enthusiasts who appreciate its striking colors and artistic potential in planted tanks. The vibrant red or pink leaves provide a visually captivating element to the aquatic environment, making it an excellent choice for aquascaping and creating visually stunning aquascapes. With the right conditions and attention to its specific requirements, it can thrive and become a focal point in your aquarium.