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Bolbitis heudelotii

African water fern

Bolbitis heudelotii

African water fern

  • Time-tested, robust epiphyte
  • Typical fern-like appearance
  • Transparent bottle-green leaves
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Description

The African water fern is a beautiful, time-tested aquatic fern with transparent bottle green pinnate fronds. It has a wide distribution across tropical Africa, growing attached to rock along the mean waterline of fast-flowing waters, partly together with Anubias species. Also under aquarium conditions, Bolbitis heudelotii attaches itself to solid objects by its blackish roots, but it will also grow when it is fastened to the substrate surface. Just make sure you do not cover the rhizome as it might otherwise rot away.
Bolbitis heudelotii is mostly delivered in its emersed (terrestrial) form. The emersed fronds mostly look different to the submerged foliage, and blackish leaf tips or spots are frequent. This does not mean in any way that its vitality is reduced. Good growth conditions provided, the plant will develop new entirely green submerged foliage without dark tips or spots.

Growth is sped up a lot by the addition of CO2 and fertilisation via the water column. Bolbitis heudelotii develops best in soft, slightly acidic water, however, it is a relatively undemanding plant and will also grow in medium-hard water. The plant has a low light demand but also thrives with intense lighting when a good nutrient and CO2 supply is provided. This fern is easy to propagate: Simply cut the creeping rhizome. When the bush has become too large, Bolbitis heudelotii tolerates hard pruning.

The African water fern is a popular plant in aquascaping, where it is mainly used for decorating the hardscape (rocks and driftwood). It is especially nice in Nature Aquaria, but also highly decorative in every standard planted tank.

Bolbitis heudelotii (Bory ex FÉE) Alston, or African water fern, is widely distributed in the African tropics. There it grows attached to rocks or driftwood with its roots, in spray zones and inundation areas of rapidly flowing rivers and rivulets. In West Afrika it is often found in the same habitats as Anubias barteri varieties.

Very much like Java fern (Microsorum pteropus) and Anubias, Bolbitis heudelotii possesses a creeping rhizome, on which the leaves and roots grow. Its submersed leaves are single to double pinnate, transparent and bottle-green, whereas the emersed leaves are single pinnate, of a matte green, and rather hard. The entire plant is brittle.
There seem to be several forms of B. heudelotii in cultivation, which differ a bit even when kept under the same conditions. (read more)

Synonyms Gymnopteris heudelotii Bory ex Fée
Complete botanical name Bolbítis heudelótii (Bory ex Fée) Alston
Family Dryopteridaceae
Genus Bolbitis
Difficulty easy
Usage Epiphyte (growing on hardscape), Background, Midground
Growth slow
pH value 5 - 7
Temperature tolerance 18 - 27°C
Carbonate hardness 0 - 12°dKH
General hardness 0 - 30°dGH
Propagation Rhizomteilung, Splitting, cutting off daughter plants
Can grow emersed? yes
Source Flowgrow
Synonyms
Gymnopteris heudelotii Bory ex Fée
Complete botanical name
Bolbítis heudelótii (Bory ex Fée) Alston
Family
Dryopteridaceae
Genus
Bolbitis
Difficulty
easy
Usage
Epiphyte (growing on hardscape), Background, Midground
Growth
slow
pH value
5 - 7
Temperature tolerance
18 - 27°C
Carbonate hardness
0 - 12°dKH
General hardness
0 - 30°dGH
Propagation
Rhizomteilung, Splitting, cutting off daughter plants
Can grow emersed?
yes
Source
Flowgrow

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Customer reviews

This item has been rated 4.4 out of 5 stars
25 Reviews
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5 Stars(18)
4 Stars(2)
3 Stars(3)
2 Stars(2)
1 Star(0)
Eros M.
Large and branched plant
23rd November 2021
Bolbitis heudelotii - pot
Bolbitis heudelotii - pot

The potted plant was very large and branched so I got 3 portions that I planted in different points of the aquarium, very satisfied. (read more)

Youri E.
Good quality !!
21st May 2021
Bolbitis heudelotii - pot
Bolbitis heudelotii - pot

Plant arrived healthy and quite supplied. Thanks a lot! No snails to report by the way, N.B. if you have algae problems with this plant or diseased leaves you can cut them all... (read more)

joseph c.
Bit small.but in very good condition
22nd February 2021
Bolbitis heudelotii - pot
Bolbitis heudelotii - pot

Bit small for the prize but in very good condition . I t was very well packed too . .

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