Cryptocoryne spiralis (Retzius) Fischer ex Wydler var. caudigera Bogner

Sivadasan ever gave this plant to Josef Bogner who brought it to Europe in 1986. It was collected by one of Sivadasan's students in a Shola forest at 1300 m. It proved to be an easy to grow plant, both in emerged as submerged conditions, however it did not flower so its identity could not be confirmed. Maybe a C. spiralis or C. consobrina or something new? When in 2006 C. consobrina was found again (Sunil 2009), the question was still open. As the plant is very easy to grow, they were distributed by hundreds to Cryptocoryne-lovers to flower it. Finally, after 26 years, it flowered at the Botanical Garden of Munich, Bogner's 'home station' and is now described as a new variety of C. spiralis.
As it flowered only once up to now, and there was no time to take pictures of the live plant, so the only pictures are from herbarium material.

Click on the picture to get the full image (ca 50 kB)

       
       
       
The first flowering specimen of Cryptocoryne spiralis var. caudigera (TYPE) .
coll. Sivadasan s.n., cult. Bogner = NJ 3411
Note the long, threadform tail, not seen in any other C. spiralis.
coll. Sivadasan s.n., cult. Bogner = NJ 3411
Still the same plant.
coll. Sivadasan s.n., cult. Bogner = NJ 3411
In the Munich herbarium another sheet was found matching the new variety, however this plant grows in the lowland near Goa.
coll. Maesen 3332
photo Hoeck
       
Emerged cultivated plants of C. spiralis var. caudigera
coll. Sivadasan s.n., cult. NJ 3411
photo Jacobsen
Imitating the lower temperatures at 1300 mn in the shola forest, four pots were put outdoor in the half-shade.
coll. Sivadasan s.n., cult. B 828 = NJ 3411
They stand very well up to November when there may be frost at night.
coll. Sivadasan s.n., cult. B 828 = NJ 3411
This how they look before taking them inside again. But the lower temperatures did not induce flowering later on.
coll. Sivadasan s.n., cult. B 828 = NJ 3411
       
Aquarium culture of C. spiralis var. caudigera. Submerged it has
flaccid leaves, height ca. 30 cm.
coll. Sivadasan s.n., cult. B 828 = NJ 3411
photo Kasselmann
Emerged cultivated plants of C. spiralis var. caudigera. Height 10 - 15 cm, leaves more or less stiff.
coll. Sivadasan s.n., cult. B 828
Submerged cultivated plants of C. spiralis var. caudigera.
coll. Sivadasan s.n., cult. B 828
Distribution of Cryptocoryne spiralis var. caudigera
       

C. spiralis var. caudigera is an excellent aquarium plant. It multiplies not too fast, has short runners so you get a nice group.

Literature (for more literature see the spiralis-group):

Bogner, J., 2013. Eine neue Vatietat der Cryptocoryne spiralis (Retzius) Fischer ex Wydler (Araceae) ais Indien. Aqua Planta 38(4): 141-148. (Document service)
Sunil, C.N. & M. Sivadasan, 2009. Rediscovery of Cryptocoryne consobrina, a little-known and suspected-to-be extinct species of Araceae of India. Aroideana, Vol. 32: 142-146.
Sunil, C.N. & M. Sivadasan, 2009.
Cryptocoryne consobrina Schott (Araceae), eine lang verschollene Art aus Indien. Aqua Planta 34(4): 135-140

December 2013