Time series of Lobelia cardinalis ‘Dwarf’ (bright green, left side, midground) and replanted tops of  Ludwigia palustris mini ‘Super Red’ (dark red, left side,  background)

Lobelia cardinalis ‘Dwarf’ is very similar in appearance to Lobelia cardinalis ‘Wavy’ with round, bright green submerged-form leaves.  The main difference is supposed to be in the maximum height of the plant – Dwarf is smaller than Wavy.  It’s still early days for ‘Dwarf’ in the Fireplace Aquarium as the ‘Wavy’ didn’t get to its maximum height of 17 cm for about five months after planting.  It’s not really a fair growth rate comparison however, since the ‘Wavy’ was grown under “lower tech” aquarium conditions where a slower growth rate would be expected.  As with the ‘Wavy’ version, the Lobelia ‘Dwarf’ form adapated to submerged growth essentially right away.

One week after the Dwarf Lobelia was planted, I pulled out all the background Ludwigia and replanted the tops so the time series shows an interesting comparison of the growth rate of these two plants in the aquarium.  The Ludwigia will be ready for a trim shortly but the Lobelia might never need one.