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Re: Observations on growing plants in (water)

  • Subject: Re: Observations on growing plants in (water)
  • From: "Ron Iles" <roniles@eircom.net>
  • Date: Sun, 9 Jun 2002 21:32:54 -0500 (CDT)

Thanks to so many others experiences I am now hoping to grow all
Spathiphyllum in water culture.

I had to ask myself which of the following could have been significant in
causing plants to fail in water culture:

1. Sudden and/or too deep immersion
2. Roots suitable for water culture not developed
3. Sustained inadequate wetness of roots before immersion
4. Inadequate gaseous oxygen around roots not adapted to submersion or
5. Unfavourable substrate environmental conditions, unsuitably high/low
temperature, inappropriate pH, over-fertilisation etc
6. Rotting of organic material causing hostile anaerobic conditions around
roots or petioles with no aerenchyma
7. Metabolic/Pathogenic problems within the original air/compost interface
of terrestrial plants
8. Bare roots in light not dark

Spathiphyllum from composts in pots immersed bare rooted in light up to
above petiole bases in ideal water conditions tended to rot.   When
Spathiphyllum with roots in pots (in the dark) with peat only based composts
were progressively immersed in water, they thrived & developed thick white
roots.  This has happened whether or not a "drainage" layer was placed at
the base of the pot.  There has been no rotting of  the obviously acidic
peat composts.  This is also what happened in UK when I grew Spathiphyllum
in water culture.  These & further experiments will be continued to draw
firm conclusions on which to design cost effective best water culture
systems .

Curiously Syngonium cuttings at stem nodes all developed thick "water" roots
rapidly in water even in light & indeed we used this as a clean & efficient
technique for propagating Philodendron, Monstera & Maranta in UK.  Soon I
will review how well the water rooted cuttings adapt to peat composts in

Intermittently I will report on the long term success or otherwise of our
experiments.   This may bear on how relatively successful the various taxons
& cultons (& maybe other aquatic, semi-aquatic & terrestrial aroids) are in
dedicated "clean" self-operating water culture systems.

Ron Iles

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