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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey guys, so I recently picked up a large anubias barteri with a large rhizome and lots of long white roots. I also picked up a medium anubias coffefolia with only a few roots and a small anubias nana petite with a large root system. These are for a low light high pH cichlid setup and will be attached to driftwood.

The guy at the store mentioned that I should trim the roots off all the way down to the rhizome in order to stimulate new root growth so they attach better. Is this true? I always thought you attached the roots and they will eventually anchor themselves but now he has me questioning exactly how to care and transplant my anubias assortment!

Thanks for the input!
 

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Plants use roots not only to attach themselves but also the adsorb nutrients. That's true for all plants, not just water plants or anubias. Water plants can adsorb some nutrients through the leafs, but if you cut off all roots I would expect them to be seriously deprived of nutrients. I can't say I have ever tried it, but if at all, I would only cut off a bit of the root at the very tip. Some people do that also for plants that they put in the garden (such as rhododendron). I never cut off any roots, and I have beautiful rhododendrons and anubias :)

Cutting off the entire root system all the way to the rhizome would seem a good way to make you come back to the store and buy more plants once these are dead. Again, I haven't tried it, but it doesn't sound like a good idea at all.
 

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fmueller said:
Plants use roots not only to attach themselves but also the adsorb nutrients. That's true for all plants, not just water plants or anubias. Water plants can adsorb some nutrients through the leafs, but if you cut off all roots I would expect them to be seriously deprived of nutrients. I can't say I have ever tried it, but if at all, I would only cut off a bit of the root at the very tip. Some people do that also for plants that they put in the garden (such as rhododendron). I never cut off any roots, and I have beautiful rhododendrons and anubias :)

Cutting off the entire root system all the way to the rhizome would seem a good way to make you come back to the store and buy more plants once these are dead. Again, I haven't tried it, but it doesn't sound like a good idea at all.
Absolutely agree... :thumb: The roots are mandatory! Trim, yes, just at the tip. Nutrient exchange occurs though the root system and the roots conduct food to the rhizome where it is stored and utilized.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks for the replies guys. Its sad that stores give such poor advice, this is a small ma and pa shop too that you can usually trust. The only thing that through me off is anubias also absorb nutrients through there leaves like Java fern, but unlike ferns they also grow a root system.

With that being said how healthy is it for them to be attached to driftwood or lavarock?? Im assuming there might be some nutrients in wood and some detritus might get caught up in the root system but it cant be anything like substrate. Should I put root tabs between the wood and the plant?
 

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borohands8593 said:
Thanks for the replies guys. Its sad that stores give such poor advice, this is a small ma and pa shop too that you can usually trust.
It might be that they just heard something about root trimming and passed on that info without giving it much thought. Just giving them the benefit of doubt here.

borohands8593 said:
The only thing that through me off is anubias also absorb nutrients through there leaves like Java fern, but unlike ferns they also grow a root system.
Java fern in my tanks grow a very extensive root system - larger than my Anubias, actually.

borohands8593 said:
With that being said how healthy is it for them to be attached to driftwood or lavarock??
Very! I have killed countless Anubias by not attaching them to rocks or driftwood. If the rhizome ends up in the substrate, survival chances for the plant are virtually nil in my experience.

borohands8593 said:
Im assuming there might be some nutrients in wood and some detritus might get caught up in the root system but it cant be anything like substrate. Should I put root tabs between the wood and the plant?
The only plants I fertilize are Echinodorus. Once they get very large - on the verge of outgrowing a 75G - they just can't get enough nutrients from fish waste, and I push Jobe's plant sticks in the substrate around them. All my other plants do just fine without supplementing fertilizers.

All that said, my larger Anubias will eventually have roots stretching from their place on a rock or piece of wood down into the substrate, and they will develop a substantial root system in the substrate. No doubt they will also draw nutrients from there. If you look closely, you can see those roots in the photo below.

 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Wow nice healthy anubias there is that a barteri? My father has a bunch of anubias in a 55gal where they are all just laying on the gravel with their rhizomes above and they seem to do well. I wantto attach them to driftwood for a more natural look though. If the barteri and coeffefolia become too large to be on the same piece of wood can I detach one of them to reattach elsewhere down the line? I know this would take years to grow that much but I like to think ahead.

My only other question is lighting. Right now the is a 15W on 26gal tank, pitiful! I was thinking of upgrading to Zoo Med AquaSun T5-HO 24inch which has 2 24W bulbs for 48W total. This would benefit my bolbitis and crypts as well. My only fear is having to much light and causing algae on the anubias. I do have a single male bristlenose pleco who I hope will not eat the leaves but clean them of algae much like he does to my java fern. Should I get some kind of snail or Oto as well to make sure the leaves stay clean?

I have a ton of java moss to is it ok if the moss grows around and into the r oot system of the anubias on the driftwood or would this choke off the root system?
 
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