questions about plants in water

Lamora(4)August 11, 2012

Hi all you beautiful people with beautiful plants!

I brought this up on another tread a day or 2 ago, just in passing, and now I cannot find it to see if anyone responded to it, all someone said was "good question" the last I seen.

I have a Swedish Ivy plant, very small still, in a jar of water, I am going to grow it in a water vase. I would also like to grow at least 2 more plants this way.

Question of the day, How do I feed a plant that is just in a vase of water?

I tried mixing the food/water like I do with my other plants, got rid of the old water and put the new water with food in the jar. I did this only once for fear of over feeding. Or, if it is just in water, should I be concerned about feeding it?

Plus, is it normal for the water to turn green and get a bit "mossy" on the bottom of the container? Is there something I can do about that? (I can live with it, just wondering is all)

What do you think? any advice for me?

Marjie :)

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I'm using the liquid Miracle Grow houseplant food...the kind in the small bottle that instructs you just to use a few drops. I'm just putting it in after I change the water. I read somewhere that you're only supposed to feed a water pothos once every few weeks but I'm not sure about ivy.

As for the algae, it might mean it's getting too much sun or that there's some kind of chemical in your watter supply that causes it to grow. I think phosphates promote algae growth.

    Bookmark   August 11, 2012 at 4:31PM
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pinkiemarie--It isn't in the sun, so that isn't it. I didn't think of the water doing that, makes since tho. It does form on the dog dish outside too, never made the connection. DUHH!

Water here is good drinking water, still has a lot in it tho. So maybe if I used distilled it would help. I don't think it is really hurting the ivy, just buggs me. lol

Would love to get a water filter in this house.. maybe someday.

Anyway-- thanks for the suggestion. Going to try a different water and see.. :)


    Bookmark   August 11, 2012 at 4:49PM
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dellis326 (Danny)

Algae comes from the air. Or more specifically, spores from algae are released into the air and drift in the wind until they pass a bit of water and fall in and if it's a suitable environment they will start to grow. It has nothing to do with your water source other the then nature of it's chemistry like PH (acid or basic) or dissolved solids(Hardness) etc. and the species of algae. Unless your water source is a pond, creek or river that is unfiltered that isn't where it is coming from.

If the green is directly on the glass or the water is green then most likely it's algae, if it is a greenish goop at the bottom of the container then it is most likely bacteria. Almost always it would be harmless to your plants but it would consume nutrients from the water.

As far as fertilizer is concerned I would use a liquid hydroponic nutrient solution but if that is not an option you can use any quality liquid or water soluble fertilizer, start at one third the recommended dosage once a month just topping off the container with clean water in between and replacing the entire water supply when you fertilize next. Try this rate for a few months and see what happens and adjust your recipe if necessary.

About twenty years ago I use to raise aquarium plants in tubs to sell in my backyard. The only thing I used to feed them was rabbit poop I got from a friend that had a rabbit. A couple of bunny pellets per gallon of water. In full sun all day long, the water was soupy green but the plants were beautiful. Got a friend with a rabbit?

    Bookmark   August 12, 2012 at 12:06AM
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Hi Marjie,

How much Swedish Ivy do you have? One cutting or more?
The reason I ask is, although some plants can live in water indefinately, others may not.

If you have more than one cutting perhaps you can experiment??
Some in water, some in soil, after roots form.

Seems water-loving plants do well in water.

Sounds like the green stuff is algae..
Or, by chance, is/are your cutting/s in a bronze vase? Ever see patina?

Danny, lol. How about bird poop? Toni

    Bookmark   August 12, 2012 at 11:12AM
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dellis~ Thanks for the information, it is mostly the water itself that is green, settling on the bottom of the jar. Looks like algae from what your discribing.

The people across the street has rabbits, (laughing at the thought of asking them for poop~~ lol). But they are good people, maybe they won't laugh. Or I could just change the plant food, that sounds easier..

Hopeful~no bronze, just a simple glass jar. I have 4 cuttings, about 6", 2 in soil, 2 in water, the ones in water were almost dead in the soil, so i took them out, cut the stems,(rotten) and put them in water. Not 24 hrs later they looked like different plants! Have real good roots now, and new leaves all over the place, funny tho, the ones in the soil are standing up straight and tall, the ones in water are over the side of the jar. silly plants anyway.. lol

But I've been doing a lot of research on plants in water, come to find out you can do that with a lot of plants. Someone said he has succulents and a cactus in water only. (even he doesn't understand that~~not sure I want to try) Only prob is that I can see, are the ones that need to be hanging up. Like the long viney ones,(pothos and such) would have to be extra careful with that. It's just a thought.

But I think I may want to experiment some with it. I have always love plants in vases of water, just never really tried, maybe it is time? If it works out, great! If not, lesson learned.

Anyway, thanks, very much appreciated.
Marjie :)

    Bookmark   August 12, 2012 at 12:30PM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

Just remember one important thing as you go down this road: plant roots require oxygen just as much as they require water. It will be up to you to make sure that your plants have plenty of available oxygen.

    Bookmark   August 13, 2012 at 10:41PM
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pirate_girl(Zone7 NYC)

Hiya Rhizo,

Wait pls. can I ask what you've got in mind (I grow a fair amount of plants in water). Can you make a couple of suggestions pls? Thanks.

    Bookmark   August 14, 2012 at 7:36AM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

Hi Pirate!

Dissolved oxygen stays in the water for awhile but is diminished constantly by plant use and dissipation from water surface. Algae growth is also a user of dissolved oxygen.

So, it's as simple as changing the water on a regular basis and keeping the containers clean. Large containers would benefit from a little bubbler from the aquarium department, which also looks really cool.

    Bookmark   August 14, 2012 at 7:56AM
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Marjie. Well, it's an experiment, maybe the strongest plants win...:)

I too have heard people say they grow succulents in water successfully.
Don't know how it works, but it's interesting.

Like Rhizo stated, water needs changing. Otherwise, it gets murky, and STINKS. lol. The odor will knock you out. lol.

Oh, what did you mean when you said, 'the ones in water were almost dead in the soil?' I don't understand.

Congrats, getting them to root. You've come a long way, Marjie. So has the number of plants you now have..
Be careful, plants are quite addicting. lol.

Is your SI fragrant? Minty?

    Bookmark   August 14, 2012 at 11:47AM
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Thanks for all this info. :) Things I haven't thought about. That's good.

I haven't started to transfer from soil to water yet, but I have a "Goden Potho" that I am thinking of trying this with. She isn't very big, but she isn't a starter either. No vines yet, but she is growing new leaves. When would be the best time to do this and~~ Would she be a good plant for this? Just to try with? I am planning on getting some marbles/stones for the bottom today. And if I can find a pretty glass vase.

I have looked at sites and studied on this, so I basicly know how to transfer..

I am nervous about this, can't you tell? Not wanting to hurt the plants, But also wanting to learn/try something too. My DH is so NOT with this idea at all. But he also understands why I want to try.

Thanks again for the insights~~ please add more if you can/want. Need all the info, insights, personal exp, etc I can get.. ;)

    Bookmark   August 14, 2012 at 11:56AM
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pirate_girl(Zone7 NYC)

I'd suggest Pothos would be a good plant, but you need to pls. wait to have some vine, I don't think one can do it w/ just leaves. I wouldn't convert it, I'd start fresh w/ a new vine in the water.

I always have several cups of Pothos growing in cups of water in my bathroom, just a way to keep some live greenery in there, they do just fine.

Hi Rhizo, & thanks,

I've been thinking about using a straw to bubble some air into that water. I never change the water, just add to it. But then again, I also use bits of charcoal in my water, helps control the algae & doesn't get stinky (aquarium grade charcoal).


pls. don't be nervous; Pothos are very strong, resilient plants, I assure you. They're quite hard to kill (except by overwatering).

    Bookmark   August 14, 2012 at 12:13PM
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Hi hopeful- guess we were talking at the same time? lol

What I was meaning was, I had all 4 starts in the same pot, 2 were not doing well, almost died. So as recommended by here, I took the 2 out that were dying, put them in water. Not a day later~~ walla!! they were living! Looked like totally different plants! They are growing downards, over the side of the jar, as their siblings, in the pot, are growing straight up. I just think that is cool.

One of the ivy, that is in water tho, has a very short "root span" I guess is how it would be put. Had to cut quite a bit off of the stem because it was rotten. So I have to keep the water lvl high for that one. But they are both doing great, roots and new leaves all over the place! Very please with that.

Yes, I am addicted to plants now, Thank you very much! lol And an odor from my SI? I haven't noticed any. Will get closer to it today now, just to see/smell... lol

    Bookmark   August 14, 2012 at 12:15PM
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Pirate-- lol-- again, talking at the same time! women chit-chat-- hehe

Well, the only one that has a vine is my DH's and if I touch it, by doing this with that one, he may go to WA and never come back!! Maybe I can find a vine on mine soon. I thought I seen a small one the other day. Will see. :)

    Bookmark   August 14, 2012 at 12:29PM
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Marjie, yep, chit-chatting

Marj, I meant to say, Plectranthus/SI has a minty scent. Rub leaves w/fingers and thumb, then smell..ummm, refreshing.

I understand now. Duh, lol. So, they're doing better in water than soil? Or two are?

As long as leaves aren't sitting in water, there shouldn't be any problems..just the stems will do.
Foliage sitting in water, STINKS and rots.

How many plants do you now have? 100? 300? lol..j/k.

    Bookmark   August 14, 2012 at 12:45PM
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albert_135(Sunset 2 or 3)

We've a pathos and some other trailing houseplant that has arrowhead shaped leaves growing in a small aquarium with whole bunch of common guppies. The aquarium has a filter which, I assume, must provide some aeration. Both the plants and the guppies seem to prefer neglect. The aquarium is on the far side of a room that is quite light with windows all along the south and west windows. Roots have to be trimmed after several months.

    Bookmark   August 14, 2012 at 1:45PM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

You folks who are growing plants in small containers would do better to put the drinking straws away. You are blowing CO2 into the water (not oxygen) .....the bubbles rise, disturbing the surface. That is how air gets into the water. You'd be better off sticking a clean turkey baster into the water...and really aerating the dickens out of it. The goal is to get air into the water not CO2.

But, by the time you've done that, you could have dumped the water, rinsed the container, and put the plant back in. The rocks you put in will need to be cleaned frequently, too.

    Bookmark   August 14, 2012 at 5:43PM
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Ahh, lol, thank you rhizo_1, good reminder on O2 on inspiration, CO2 on expiration.
My creeping charlie in H2O hasn't done anything yet which I expect it's only been a few day.

    Bookmark   August 14, 2012 at 8:24PM
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dellis326 (Danny)

Most of the O2/CO2 exchange happens at the water surface not in the bubbles from an aerator so it wouldn't matter very much if you blow through a straw or use a pump in that regard. Also, in a single expired breath there is still plenty of oxygen, human lungs are not that efficient.

But, yeah, as Rhizo says, changing the water is the best option, even though some plants will grow in the same "just" topped off water supply for long periods of time they are better off with changes. I use a piece of aquarium air line tube and siphon the water out, silicone tube is easier to use then the vinyl tubing.

That said, plants in water do grow better with an air pump centered under them particularly if some of the roots are actually above the water surface and the bubbles constantly splash water on them while they are exposed to the air.

Remember to wash all the soil off the roots when you convert them and then trim the roots if it is necessary.

Rocks; Be careful of what rocks you place in the water. some rock dissolve minerals in the water and can change the dissolved solids level too high for health growth.

Marjie, Did you get your bunny pellets from your neighbor yet?

    Bookmark   August 15, 2012 at 9:39AM
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dellis~~ No rabbit pellets yet, they are on vacation before school starts up~ She teaches 5th grade and she thought she needed just a bit more time before that started up again~ lol.

I went ahead and did it tho. Got some white rocks, washed off all the roots that I could, couldn't get all the soil off tho, will look/see how that is doing in a day or 2 and see if it soaked off some. I didn't cut any roots off, not sure how much is too much. That won't hurt it would it? Or should I go ahead and cut some off. (Now that I already did it)

I got a medium size fish bowl for it. I didn't like any of the vases I seen, not for this anyway, they all looked like they could tip too easily. I got myself a small glass boot (too cute to pass up) for the smaller ones, but it isn't very steady, so they are in a jar. (going to try ot clue it to a small plate, too cute not to use it) I am thinking of putting the smaller starts in the jar with the Swedish Ivy, would that work? Here is a pic of what I did, too much? not enough? Please let me know. :)

Now that I look at it like this, there are too many roots on it, isn't there... will fix that later this afternoon, if you all think I should.

Marjie~~ a work in progress~~ :)

    Bookmark   August 15, 2012 at 3:04PM
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Looks cute. i would clean all the soil and trim roots. I think will be hard to change the water w/stones( I had my Lucky Bamboo w/gravel)it was hard to change the water , gravel was keep spilling out every time plus it smelled because I couldn't change the water completely. Also I think you don't have to fill w/water to the rim,just cover the roots


    Bookmark   August 15, 2012 at 4:45PM
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elichka ~ thanks, I think it is cute too. :)

I will trim the roots and see about lowering the water lvl. There are some smaller plants in it too, and some roots are short, thats why the water is so high. But I will see what I can do. Clean it up some.

One question, now that I'm thinking on it. The temp has been getting into the mid 50'sF at night, is that too cold for the water? Or should I bring it in at night? How cold can the water get before it hurts the plant? (I know, I should have asked before I did this) But questions come up as I do things... ;)


    Bookmark   August 15, 2012 at 5:48PM
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dellis326 (Danny)

50s may be pushing things a bit but if it warms up during the day it may be fine, any colder though and find a new home for it indoors.

There is too much water in your fish bowl, about half full will do fine. I think you should take one of those rocks and soak it in white vinegar for a couple of days and see what happens, if it fizzes (this means the acid in the vinegar in dissolving it) then it may raise the PH or the dGH of the water too high and hurt your plants.

Any soil that you couldn't wash off will become soft enough to get off after it sits in water for a while, don't be concerned about it but don't forget it either, next time you change the water see if you can remove it. If not just cut off the root. You could just cut off many of the roots now and soon you will see some nice fat bright roots starting to grow, most of those "soil" type of roots will die off and you will have to take them off anyways.

Go to the pet store and buy a roll of air line tubing to siphon water out of the container. that way you don't have to up-end it to pour the water out. I prefer the silicone tube but vinyl is fine.


    Bookmark   August 16, 2012 at 9:45AM
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Hi. I'm certainly no expert, but I've been around growing plants in water for a long time. Just so you're aware, there is a difference between "water" roots and "soil" roots. Your philo (P. 'Brazil' possibly, with those leaf markings) was obviously grown in soil. So don't be surprised if those roots begin to rot under water. :( It probably won't kill the plants as they will send out "water" roots in place of what is there now. But it could be a bit messy.

If these were my plants, what I would do is take them back out and plant them up in a pot using a decent soil mix like 5-1-1. Then I'd take cuttings off them -- basically, I'd lop off most of the tops of the individual stems -- and root those stems in water. THOSE would then be the ones I'd grow in your pretty fish bowl.

When I had my aquariums, I kept pothos in all of them. They LOVED the aquarium water and were very good at taking excess nutrients (from the fish poop) out of the water. My fish loved to swim amongst the thick tangle of roots and my vegetarians would even nibble on them. They all did extremely well. Some of the pothos would grow underwater and some would cascade down the sides of the tank or were trained up and over using string or wire. Some of them eventually escaped the tanks altogether and I'd find them behind or underneath the stands, latching onto the carpeting or wall board and trying to run/climb. These ARE vines after all! ;)

PS: In my experience, philos are not as likely to get out of control in a fish tank/indoor pond situation as pothos.

Anyway, that's my 2 cents. Cheers everyone!


    Bookmark   August 16, 2012 at 3:19PM
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Danny~ trimmed a lot of roots off, looks much better. I was wondering about cutting the stems also, you answered my question :)

Mid 50*F at night, around 85-90 during the day. Is that too much of a change in temperature?

I also took the white rocks out, (call me paranoid) got to thinking about it, there was a white "dust" on them when I got them. I did rinse them off real well, but got a bit paranoid with what I was reading.

Thanks for the tip tho, will have to do that.. they really are pretty rocks. (I think anyway)

The bowl now is just over half full of water too. Still have some short stems there. It looks a lot better all the way around. If there are some leaves that just WILL NOT STAY out of the water, that won't hurt them, will it? And the up-ending to clean it out.. it is just a small bowl no big deal to clean it. But I will remember that~~ just in case I want something larger later on~~ (My poor DH, lol. me and my hobbies)

This morning they didn't look too bad. A few leaves look a bit "soft" but I think it is the shock of a new setting. Other than that it seems to be doing just fine. I put some smaller ones in the jar with the Swedish Ivy starts. Looks nice like that. They will get along ok.. won't they?

Thanks to all of you for your input on this. Something new for me. I like new. And I am excited to learn, one way or the other.

Marjie :)

    Bookmark   August 16, 2012 at 3:33PM
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Onewaits~ sorry, we were talking at the same time. Thanks for your imput too. I apprecieate it and will keep it in mind.

Like I said, "so far" they aren't doing too bad, but it's only been one day too. And yes, there is a difference in water/soil roots, they need time to adjust and grow the roots they need. :)


    Bookmark   August 16, 2012 at 3:51PM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

I hope that you tried to rinse all of the soil off. I was dismayed to see that. As others have told you....remove all leaves that are in the water. Yes, it's important.

    Bookmark   August 16, 2012 at 10:33PM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

I hope that you tried to rinse all of the soil off. I was dismayed to see that. As others have told you....remove all leaves that are in the water. Yes, it's important.

    Bookmark   August 16, 2012 at 10:34PM
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rhizo, dismayed at what? the roots? I tried to get all the soil off. Will need to take a pic of it tomorrow and show you what it looks like now. Much better, I think. :)

Still a work in progress tho. Just like me~~ he-he

Still learning this. You all have been so patient with me. I know I ask a lot of questions, But believe me when I say I appreciate all you've taught me.. so very much.. :)


    Bookmark   August 17, 2012 at 12:18AM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

I'm sure it looks better with a lot of root pruning. Learning by doing is a tried and true method for success. Something to be admired about you (and others who plow right in) is your fearlessness.

I can't stress enough that you keep the container and water clean. Take the plant out once in awhile (put it in another vessel) so that you can clean the vase and the rocks with hot, soapy water followed by a rinse with some bleach. Rinse, rinse with clean water afterwards.

Then, you should swish the roots carefully in clean water. Believe it or not, you can make a bleach solution and swish your plants in it with zero harm to the roots, but killing lots of algae. The solution should be very weak. Peroxide would be a good alternative.

Remember, oxygen in that water is essential for the survival of your plant. Changing the water frequently will satisfy that requirement.

    Bookmark   August 17, 2012 at 8:25AM
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dellis326 (Danny)

To add to Rhizo's comments, Use soap and not detergent! very important. Detergent can chemically burn the plant's roots if it is not rinsed out well enough.

    Bookmark   August 17, 2012 at 9:31AM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

Gosh, I never suggested that soap of any kind be used to wash the roots. Thanks for making that clarification should my earlier post not be crystal clear. Hot soapy water for the vase and rocks only.

    Bookmark   August 17, 2012 at 10:40AM
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Marjie...your Philodendron 'Brazil' is really healthy its vibrant.

Besides soil removal, be sure no leaves are sitting in the water..they'lll rot and stink.

Pirate Girl said she uses charcoal..a good idea.

Are you planning on leaving your Philo in water indefinately? Some Philos do well in water, others not-so-good. I've never tried Brazil, 'in water' so can't say, but so far your tank and plant look great. Toni

    Bookmark   August 17, 2012 at 11:06AM
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Hi all. (no pic yet)
Thanks for the care instructions on how to do this. I really don't know why I get the "Brazil" and Golden Potho mixed up so much. Those 2 I have a real problem with. (Found out that putting names on them with masking tape gets real sticky when the heat gets to them.)I am going to have to get some of those crafting stick and ID them that way. All my plants!! lol

Dellis, thanks. I found out that those rocks I have, (I did that experiment with the vinegar) and they were DISSOLVING!! I am glad I took them out of the plants when I did.

Hopeful, I would like to keep them in water for as long as I can, If I can get it right. And yes, she is pretty vibrant, more so in RL. ;)

rhizo-- "plowing right into it" and being "fearless?" HA! I am scared to death I am going to kill it!

I chose this plant because I have 2 more. Very small ones, but they are growing. Would love to put them all together, but one is mom's and the other is my DH's, really don't want to mess with them. (of course, I am the one taking care of them)

One more silly question, I've read that ONLY GLASS CONTAINERS should be used, is this true? Can't use plastic or ceramic? I have some real pretty ceramic pots that would be perfect for this. Or is glass the only thing recommended for water plants...

Would love to see some pictures of other plants in water from others here. Just to see what you have done with yours. "show and tell" kinda thing.. lol Any takers??

Marjie :)

    Bookmark   August 17, 2012 at 2:05PM
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Hi Marjie,

Invest in 5-8" tags..They're sold on Ebay and other online nurseries..Not expensive either.

Or do you and your family eat ice cream bars on a stick? If so, clean off sticks w/soap and water, let dry completely, then use as a tag. They work, last a couple years.

No, you can root plants in glass, plastic or ceramic. As long as the bottom doesn't have drainage
Where did you hear you can only root in glass?

    Bookmark   August 17, 2012 at 3:16PM
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Was surfing the sites and had at least 2 say glass only. So now I regret asking my husband to drill holes in the ones I just bought~~ wonder if he can put it back~~ lol. oh well. Live and learn, Thanks tho, makes me feel better knowing that.

Popsicle sticks,, seems like every time I want to save them, mom throws them out! guess I will need to put them in my room. Cant seem to keep them. would be easier just to buy the crafting sticks~~ ha-ha.

The county fair is going on now, went to it last night and for some reason, I never noticed before after all these years, they don't have a display of house plants. Garden, flowers, and such, but no house plants. Now I am wondering how would I suggest that to fair comity for next year. Humm, maybe I will look into that.

    Bookmark   August 17, 2012 at 8:20PM
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pirate_girl(Zone7 NYC)

Hi again,

I agree w/ Toni about using multiple types of containers to water root things or grow them Hydro. Actually, 3 out of 4 of my hydro (or semi-hydro) plants are in plastic & just fine. My professionally purchased Hydro set up (w/ Hoya) is also plastic, both the inner & outer pots.

Maybe the idea of using glass is so one can see through it. My Pothos cuttings kept in the bathroom are in clear plastic cups like one might buy iced coffee or iced tea in; they are unmarked & totally transparent cups.

Do you have any old venetian blinds? One can cut up their slats & make plant tags from them, too if you've got any handy. I use plain white plant tags I buy from my club, tags w/ pencil as I find the pen smears. You'll need to find out what works for you.

Your 'Brazil' has that stripe down the middle, I bet the Golden Pothos does not. I didn't know what this 'Brazil' was, but saw it at the supermarket 2 days ago & realize it's the plant you're showing here.

Here's my hydro Sans family:

A closer shot & showing the 'netted' pots I came across somewhere, but have forgotten the source. I added Leca stones (porous balls of fired clay) & water & placed them inside yogurt cups into a larger saucer lining the basket.

    Bookmark   August 17, 2012 at 8:28PM
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I just remembered!! I have a string of bananas (long ago called string of green beans) that's still sitting in an old can of water on the picnic bench out back! It is still healthy, green, and getting new growth. Probably be a good idea to pot it up. Everyone has such great ideas and beautiful plants.
The creeping charlie that I started in water is getting a tiny root. I haven't had the chance to put some in my mix to see which would do better.
I also like the bleach idea.

    Bookmark   August 17, 2012 at 9:37PM
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dellis326 (Danny)

Here's some of mine.
A. plowmanii, potted in sphagnum, pot sits in water

An un-IDed species/variety of Philodendron, potted in sphagnum, pot sits in water. In the background is a collection of spathaphyllum recovering from our heat wave. they are rooted in LECA.

Two Philodendron 69686, one in my studio, the other at home, very different growing conditions. The studio plant is potted is sphagnum and sits in water. The one at home is in an undrained basket rooted in sphagnum

Two Philodendron squamiferum. The studio plant is just in a jar of water, the home plant is in an undrained basket rooted in spagnum.

A Schefflera rooted in LECA

A Scindapsus and although you can't really see it, an Alocasia 'poly', both rooted in wood chips and charcoal.

    Bookmark   August 18, 2012 at 3:14PM
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Pirate and dellis~~ Great Plants! so huge! I think my cat would think he was a jungle cat with all that! lol

So, what I can do if I wanted to, is to "anchor" them in something, then put them in another source of water and let it sit. So simple. Thanks :)

I seen something on Facebook the other day, they had an aquarium, they put a sheet of Styrofoam on top of the water, cut holes in it and put the plants in the holes. That way the roots were in the water and the plant itself would stay above. I thought that was a great idea, when we have room.

Well I got frustrated this afternoon, IDK, all of a sudden I had no idea of what I was doing.

I have been having an ongoing issue with keeping the leaves OUT of the water, I think the little fish bowl was too big (for now) to do that with. So, I trimmed a few leaves off, got some new starts, and made up 3 new jars for it, Now the leaves are above water and the roots are in water. (My DH seems to think I just killed them all, This is one time I do hope he is NOT right! /sigh)

I am hoping that they all will get big enough to put all in the little fish bowl soon enough.(and be able to keep the leaves out of the water) The ones I have with the Swedish Ivy are doing real nice, think I will keep those together.

But I am going to leave them alone for a while now, let them get settled down some. And cross my fingers, eyes and toes and pray for the best.. ha-ha. (wish I could do all that again,, hurts to cross anything anymore)

Thanks for everything, and hope for the best. :)

    Bookmark   August 18, 2012 at 9:37PM
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dellis326 (Danny)

Yes, you do not have to just let the plant hang down into the water. If you give the plant something to root in they can climb or stand up and grow in a more natural form.

LECA is probably one of the best things to use but you can also use long fiber sphagnum moss, hardwood charcoal (NOT briquettes), broken up clay pots, rock wool, turface (or similar products) and small lava gravel. You can also use (but does not wick water as well or at all) gravel, glass marble/blobs, plastic fiber or anything like that. Wood chips can also be used but they do seem to break down quickly.

Hydroponic lettuce is often grown in large vats on Styrofoam boards with holes cut in them.

Don't worry much about leaves in the water. Sometimes they'll stay alive but usually don't, if they die just pull them out when you change the water.

    Bookmark   August 18, 2012 at 11:13PM
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