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Eriocaulon 'Vietnam' - good alternative to Helanthium Bolivianum 'Quadricostatus'

erwin123

Member
Joined
4 Mar 2021
Messages
577
Location
Singapore
EVietnam.jpg

This is a short note comparing my experience with Helanthium bolivianum 'Quadricostatus' and Eriocaulon 'Vietnam'. They look pretty similar and seem to grow to about the same size.

Alas, I have removed the Erio to make way for Rotala Macandra Narrow Leaf, as I embark on my own (less extreme) 'Rotala Kill Tank' journey. I will split the Erio and plant a small piece in my low tech tank.

When it comes to which plant I liked more, I feel that the Erio has the edge over the Helanthium:
  • The Helanthium grows a lot faster and sheds old leaves pretty quickly. The old yellowed leaves are often at the base of the plant. Its almost impossible to trim them because they are blocked by the new leaves (i.e. you will end up cutting the new leaves). So you have to use your hands to pull out the old leaves? (I'm sure someone has a better technique than me) The Erio grows slower and the leaves last longer
  • Helanthium loves sending runners. Erio doesn't. (whether this is a good or bad thing I guess it depends)
  • Both are ok with being shaded, they don't need much light. The Erio in the photo above was heavily shaded by various stem plants.
  • The Erio has a slightly deeper shade of green than the Helanthium which I like more.
 

shangman

Member
Joined
13 Jul 2020
Messages
795
Location
London
Love this!

Has anyone been able to source this lovely plant in the UK at all? It's so beautiful (reminds me a bit of bromeliads), and I've been looking for a while but no luck yet! My friend in the US uses it a lot in his scapes and I'm very jealous!
 

Garuf

Member
Joined
30 Oct 2007
Messages
5,182
Location
Copenhagen
Quadricosta is a weed, I’ve known it to appear from nowhere in the old/used aquasoil I save for use under rock work or in shrimp tanks. Ive grown it in a coffee jar in the window and in a tank which had a single IKEA 1w clip light. On the other hand I haven’t had an Erio last longer than 3-4months. 🤔
 

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