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Old 08-16-2005, 01:35 PM   #1
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Java Fern Question about attaching to wood-

I have lots of lace java fern growing in my tank on a piece of driftwood (and a couple plants growing in a plastic container on a window sill), but the problem is I bought it like that. I've never successfully been able to attach the ferns on new driftwood.

What I have done is take a small plant (like 7-8 leaves on it) and with some twine, tie it to the wood. I left it alone for about 2 months and the twine has almost completely degraded, But the fern didn't attach itself. What am I doing wrong?? I don't think it would take longer to attach then 2 months. Any help would be appreciated.
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Old 08-16-2005, 01:47 PM   #2
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I would hazard to guess that it's the twine itself that's causing the problem. Twine is far too dense IMO to allow the roots to stretch out and circle their host. I would use either thread or fishing line. It may take awhile depending on the breadth of the wood also. You probably have some roots plunging into the substrate?
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Old 08-16-2005, 02:06 PM   #3
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I used thread, and they took hold pretty quickly.
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Old 08-17-2005, 01:46 PM   #4
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Ok. Thanks I'll try the fishing line then. I keep the wood with the fern on it elavated (stacked on some other wood) so the roots are draping down and it creates a nice cavern for my striped raphael catfish.
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Old 08-17-2005, 03:40 PM   #5
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I also tied some lace java fern with fishing line. I tied it to a rock instead of driftwood. I first attempted to secure it to the rock with black cotton thread, but the thread disintegrated after about a month, and I found the fern floating! It's only about 2 inches tall, but it had lots of black roots. It has stayed on the rock, secured with the fishing line, for about a month now. Last night, I tied another lace java fern to the same rock. It's not even one inch tall. I had it in a plastic cup for a month, trying to get it to grow big enough to tie to the rock. Hopefully it will do well, and I will have 2 ferns on this rock. I think the fishing line will work for your fern. Let us know how it goes!
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Old 08-17-2005, 05:23 PM   #6
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I have had luck with thread and thin rubber bands.
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Old 08-18-2005, 01:21 PM   #7
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Ya I'm gonna try the fishing line... I just need to find some. I know I have some laying around somewhere.....

I'm currently doing the plastic cup thing with some ferns. Strangely enough they seem to be growing better than in the tank. I just change the water out every other day. Now I'm trying it with regular java fern, which needs a taller cup....
Is the max height of lace java fern like 3 inchs cause that's how tall all the leaves are on the driftwood and I've seen reg java fern like a foot tall.

O ya will the fern grow on slate? Or is the rock too smooth? Maybe I should put some notchs in it....
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Old 08-19-2005, 01:01 AM   #8
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Maybe I shouldn't admit this but the lace java ferns seemed to grow better in a plastic cup under 50-watt halogen lighting! 8O They are growing very slowly. One was in the cup for a month, and now that it's been in the tank for a month, it has its first new leaf.

When I bought the fern, I picked the smallest fern the hatchery had, since my tank is only 5 gallons - not very tall. The tallest fern was about 2 inches, and 3 smaller pieces were attacted to it. I planted the big (2 inch) one with thread, then with fishing line, and now I have planted the smaller ones, all except the one still in the cup. It's still barely big enough to tie to the rock. I've only had these lace java ferns for about 2 months, so I don't know a lot about them yet. They seem to grow very, very slowly but some growth should still be noticeable. The fern that's been on the rock for a month still has not really attached to the rock by its roots. The fishing line is still holding it, but I can tell that the roots are not attached. They are sticking straight out and not bending around the rock. I was wondering about this, but this is the fern that just grew the new leaf, so it must be happy. Slate can be pretty smooth, but I think it would be ok to put a fern on it. Apparently my fern is happy on the rock without having its roots anchored to something. You could try to notch the slate slightly, just so the fishing line has a better place to grip to. I bought my fishing line at a sporting goods store. It's very thin and the package says "4 LB Test".
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Old 08-19-2005, 01:31 PM   #9
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Ya I'd hate to admit it too, but the plastic cup seems to work better then growing them in the tank . I don't have the cup under artificial lighting. It's just sitting on the window sill and the plants have been there for about a month and have grown twice the number of leaves from when I put the ferns in there. I thought this was very unusual, but when I heard that you put them in a plastic cup too it made me feel better . I think the ferns like low natural light... I'm not really sure.

I'm just gonna get some fishing line from my neighbor (he goes fishing all the time and one of his sons has like 30 different fishing poles!).
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