Saturday, April 18, 2009

C. sp. 'Daik Timur White Line'

When I was at Riau Islands in January 2009 with my explorer friend, we had the opportunity to visit the natural habitat of what is currently commercially known as C. sp. 'Lingga - White line'. These cryptocorynes were found along a small stream flowing out of the forest.

The substrate is mud but many of the cryptocorynes were rooted and covered within the upper thick layer of orange precipitates in the water. Lush emersed specimens could hardly be found.

These cryptocorynes were termed by many as C. sp. 'Daik Timur White Line' due to the distinct white line along the centre vein of the leaves. This marking is especially apparent on those submersed leaves. "Daik" is the name of one of the main towns in Lingga and "Timur" means "East" in Indonesian language, i.e. Daik Timur = East of Daik.
We tested the pH of the water and found that it wasn't as low as we thought it would be, about pH 6.6.
We searched hard to locate some spathe to aid in identification of the species but could not find any. Would the experts consider it as another variant or natural hybrid of C. sp. 'Lingga' or could it be different enough to be considered as a new species? I hope those who have specimens of this cryptocoryne could flower it soon to help in confirming its identity.
Another thing that we noted is that this cryptocoryne melts easily, many of the specimens started melting during the transportation journey a few days after we collected them.

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