Micranthemum Umbrosum – A Beautiful and Versatile Plant That’s Hard Not to Love
Micranthemum Umbrosum is widely used in aquascaping. A popular choice due to it’s stunning appearance and adaptability. It is similar to Micranthemum Micranthemoides, however the difference is mainly down to leaf size and growth nature. It is also often confused with Hemianthus Callitrichoides, another stem plant will small round leaves. All three species are often sold under the same nick name of ‘Baby Tears’, adding to the confusion.
Micranthemum Umbrosum is relatively undemanding, and can be grown in both CO2 infused and non CO2 infused aquariums. It prefers moderate light levels. Too low and this plant will struggle. If you really want this plant to grow and get the best out of it, CO2 infusion is the way to go. With CO2, growth is denser and more rapid. When it starts to grow quickly, it will consume more nutrients so be sure to dose extra nutrients.
Each stem can grow up to 20cm. Leaves are only small, around 5mm-1cm. Micranthemum Umbrosum willing produces side shoots, especially when trimmed regularly.
Uses in Aquascaping
Widely used as a mid-ground bush, you can simply trim to keep it’s size and shape. In Dutch aquascaping, this plant is cleverly trimmed to create round bushes in the mid-ground.
With a little bit of training, Micranthemum Umbrosum can also be used in the foreground. Plant stems horizontally and snip of any stems shooting upwards. Under high light and CO2 this plant will trail in the foreground.
In Nano scapes, it is commonly used as a background plant. It’s small leave size suits smaller aquaria to help maintain a sense of scale.
How to Plant
To prepare Micranthemum Umbrosum for planting:
- Remove the pot from the rockwool
- Carefully tear the rockwool away from the roots. Be carefully not to damage the roots
- Separate tho plant into several small portions
- Using aquascaping tweezers plant each portion into your substrate about 2-3cm apart from each other
- Using finer gravel types makes for easier planting
Like many stem plants, propagation is very easy. Simply snip of sections of the stem and re-plant using aquascaping tweezers. The old stem will fire out new shoots, and the new cuttings will take root in a matter of days. This practice allows for bushier growth and larger plant coverage.
Growth can be rampant, so keeping on top of pruning is a must to prevent lower sections of the stem from receiving light. You might need to trim as often as every two weeks depending how fast it grows. More light = faster growth. With more light also becomes a higher demand for CO2 and nutrients. So if you have high lighting, ensure you are injection CO2, or dosing liquid carbon. Keep up with dosing nutrients as this plant will consume more and more the faster it grows.
Where to buy
You can purchase this plant here at Aquarium Gardens: Micranthemum Umbrosum
All our plants are kept in emsersed conditions to ensure our customers receive the highest quality plants that are guaranteed to be algae free.