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Anubias Species, Varieties & Cultivars Compiled By: Julia, jfg5018 We all know it is incredibly hard to maintain a planted tank with our voracious goldies. There are very few aquatic plants that will actually thrive in our aquariums. Many of us yearn for a lusciously planted tank but are limited severely in our foliage selection. So why Anubias? Simply put, they are easy to maintain, require very minimal (if any!) additional nutrients and substrate, can survive in a plethora of water parameters, and are hardy enough to withstand curious goldfish tank mates. Thankfully, there are actually many morphologically distinct species, varieties and cultivars of Anubias to chose from! Not only do Anubias range in sizes suitable for fore-, mid-, and background arrangements but leaf-shape, and even color! Beautiful, aqua-scaped freshwater aquariums aren't just for tropical community tanks! Scientific Classification Kingdom: Plantae Phylum: Angiosperms Class: Monocots Order: Alismatales Family: Aracea Subfamily: Aroideae Genus: Anubias vSpecies: A. barteri, A. afzelli, A. gracilis, A. hastifolia, A. gigantea, A. gilletii, A. pynaertii, (A. frazeri: species status questionable) uVariegata (Variegations, Varieties: var.) wCultivar (produced in cultivation via selective breeding) Facts: Genus Characteristics: Roundish, typically heart-shaped (cordate), incised leaves. Often compact growth. Broad-leaved rosettes (leaves grow upward from a rhizome) Found naturally only in West Africa (Sengal to Angola and Zaire) Not all species of Anubias are suitable as aquarium plants Price per rhizome (as of 8/2013) can range from $5 for common strains to up to $85 for rare cultivars! Species, Varieties & Cultivars: Notations: vindicates species; uindicates variegation; windicates cultivar vAnubias afzelii Long pointed, elliptical leaves w/ prominent lateral nerves Reddish brown stems ‘Mid Ground’ Plant vAnubias barteri Compact Heart Shaped Anubias One of the most common available. One of the most vigorous and smallest species uAnubias barteri var barteri Grows up to 45 cm tall Leaves tend to be slightly lighter in color uAnubias barteri var. angustifolia (Formerly Anubias lanceolata) Narrow leaves, height 10 to 15 cm Common aquarium plant Still often sold as Anubias laneolata within the hobby Elongated leaves (5-9 times long as they are broad) uAnubias barteri var. caladiifolia One of the larger varieties Height in aquarium 7 to 30 cm, Leaves 10 to 23 cm long and 5-14 cm wide uAnubias barteri var coffeefolia: Coffee Anubias One of the naturally occurring varieties Green leaves w/ creamed coffee to light lavender undersides Reddish purple stems Less tall, more spreading Deep, indented veins causing ruffled appearance uAnubias barteri var. glabra —N.E. Brown (1901) (Pseudonyms: minima, lanceolata) Narrow-leafed (lanceolate), pointed tip leaves with short petioles Leaves: 5 to 10 cm long, 2 to 5 cm wide Flat, creeping rhizome up to 5mm in diameter Height 10 to 15 cm Propagation: Tends to not grow lateral shoots, cutting the rhizome induces the back part of the rhizome that remains in the substrate to generate a new shoot KH: 2—12°, pH: 6.0 to 7.5, T: 22-28 °C uAnubias barteri var. nana: Dwarf Anubias Dwarf creeping with heart shaped leaves Leaves are up to 6 cm long and 3 cm wide Height: 5 to 10 cm wAnubias barteri var. nana ‘eyes’ Cultivar of the regular size Anubias nana They are considerably smaller than its larger counterpart Ideal for smaller tanks or foreground Grows horizontal rather than upward Stays only a few inches tall Flowers moderately, with soft whitish green blossoms wAnubias barteri var. nana ‘golden’ Light green to golden leaves Color does not disappear as the plant ages or propagates wAnubias barteri var. nana ‘petite’ Smallest variegation of the Anubias wAnubias barteri var. nana ‘micro’ Smallest cultivar of the Anubias wAnubias barteri var. nana ‘Stardust’ Characterized by white, light veins and mottled, marbled leaves wAnubias barteri var. nana ‘Wrinkled Leaf’ Unique wavy-shaped leaves wAnubias barteri var. nana ‘Marble’: Marbled Nana Characterized by marbled leaves due to genetic mutation in DNA wAnubias barteri var. nana ‘Snow White’ Characterized by mottled, white leaves due to genetic mutation in DNA Color does not disappear as the plant ages or propagates wAnubias barteri var. nana ‘Ghost’ Characterized by young, white leaves that mature to a pale, green due to genetic mutation in DNA Anubias congensis (obsolete—see A. heterophylla) Anubias frazeri (species status questionable) vAnubias gigantea: Giant Anubias Large leaves and height vAnubias gilletii Initially heart shaped later with long rear fringes Leaves are arrow shaped Grows up to 25 to 40 cm vAnubias gracilis Soft, textured leaves Unsuitable for vigorous fish Triangular shaped, light green leaves Least robust species commonly available Often sold as A. hastifolia (completely different species) Does not like constant uprooting and excessive handling vAnubias hastifolia BIG plant with long heart shaped leaves Leaves up to 33 cm vAnubias heterophylla —Engler (1879) Often commercially available as A. congensis (obsolete) Leaves are variable in size (10 cm – 38 cm long), narrow to broadly lanceolate Slightly larger than A. barteri Leaves are a slightly paler green Grow tall in aquariums (up to 60 cm) Good general adaptation Propogation: Lateral shoots off the rhizome D: 2, KH: 2—15°, pH: 6.0 to 7.5, T: 22-26 °C, AH: 3 Anubias minima (see Anubias barteri var. glabra, Anubias lanecolata) Previously considered an autonomous species, reviewed by Crusio as a variety of A. barteri vAnubias pynaertii References: Anubias by Karen A. Randall 1998 http://www.sfbaaps.org/articles/randall_01.html Aquarium Plants Their Identification, Cultivation and Ecology by Dr. Karel Rataj and Thomas J. Horeman TFH 1977 ISBN 0-87666-455-9 Baensch Aquarium Atlas 2 by Hans A. Baensch and Dr. Rudiger Riehl Tetra Press 1993 ISBN 1-56465-114-2 Baensch Aquarium Atlas 3 by Hans A. Baensch and Dr. Rudiger Riehl Tetra Press 1996 ISBN 3-88244-053-8 The Genus Anubias SCHOTT (Aracea) by Wim Crusio Meded. Landbouwhogeschool Wageningen 79-14 (1979) The International Plant Names Index http://www.ipni.org This post has been promoted to an article