Cryptocoryne villosa N. Jacobsen

Cryptocoryne villosa is collected again in 2004 by Suwidji Wongso (ID) and he flowered it already several times. The former collections, in 1978 by Jähn and in 1985 by Jacobsen and Bogner, proved that this plant was not so easy to cultivate and C. villosa was soon out of cultivation. Cryptocoryne villosa has a very distinct limb of the spathe, densely covered with with purple hairs and a red spotted yellow throat.

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

Habitat of Cryptocoryne villosa in central Sumatra where Wongso collected the plant in 2004. Note the submersed plants down left.
coll. SW0405
photo Wongso
The same habitat. None of the plants flowered. It is not known if they also  grow emerged on the banks.
coll. SW0405
photo Wongso
In 1985, Jacobsen and Bogner found C. villosa. The bottom is apparently strong enough to have Bogner stand on one leg.
coll. NJ 85-22
photo Jacobsen
The first, in 1979 by S. Jähn collected plants of C. villosa. Note the long white part of the petioles, indicating that they are deep rooted, probably in a soft substrate of decaying debris.
coll. Jähn s.n.
photo Möhlmann
       
The 1985 plants developed very good in emersed cultivation, but not for very long.
coll. NJ 85-22, cult. B522
A more stable submerged culture in 'beech tree litter' of C. villosa (big smooth green leaves at left), C. griffithii (marmorated leaves) and C. minima (bullated leaves).
coll. & cult NJ 85-22
photo Jacobsen
The first known inflorescence of C. villosa with the amazing limb of the spathe.
coll. Jähn s.n., cult. NJ 3107
photo Jacobsen
Almost the same picture as left. The plant is cultivated emersed in pots, in shallow water..
coll. & cult. SW 0405
photo Wongso
       
The limb of the spathe. Note the small tail of the limb.
coll.& cult. SW 0405
photo Wongso
The limb again ...
coll.& cult. SW 0405
photo Wongso
and again.
coll.& cult. SW 0405
photo Wongso
The limb of the spathe bend (always?) forwards after some time.
coll.& cult. SW 0405
photo Wongso
       
The spathe reach up to 25 cm.
coll.& cult. SW 0405
photo Wongso
Limb of the in 1985 collected C. villosa.
coll. & cult. NJ 85-22
photo Jacobsen
The distinct red dots in the throat and the open margin of the seam of the tube are also seen in C.pallidinervia (the latter from Borneo) .
coll. Jähn s.n., cult. M
photo Möhlmann
The limb is densely covered with hairs, not known in any other species of Cryptocoryne.
coll.& cult. SW 0405
photo Wongso
       
Length section of the lower part of the inflorescence (the kettle).
coll. Jähn s.n., cult. M
photo Möhlmann
Idem, a white inside wall, a yellowish valve over the male flowers, rounded stigma's.
coll.& cult. SW 0405
photo Wongso
A nice drawing of C. villosa is found in de Wit(1990). Note the detail of the haired limb.
drawing Ike Zewald
Distribution of C. villosa on Sumatra (Indonesia). Central Sumatra is a very interesting locality, you find here also C. scurrilis and C.longicauda.
       

Cryptocoryne villosa is still a very rare species. It has a very narrow distribution and by that, it may be a threatened species. Today cultivation techniques are improved and we may hope that it propagates soon. But it is certainly not a 'good' aquarium plant.

Updated February 2006

Literature

Jacobsen, N., 1980. A new species of Cryptocoryne from Sumatra. Aroideana 3/4 : 118-119
Jacobsen, N., 1981. Eine neue Cryptocoryne aus Sumatra. Aqua-Planta 2-81 : 38-40.
Jacobsen, N., 1982. Cryptocorynen. Alfred Kernen Verlag, Stuttgart.
Jacobsen, N., 1992. Die Kultur einiger schwieriger Cryptocoryne-Arten in Buchenlauberde. Aqua-Planta 1-92 : 18-25.
Möhlmann, F., 1982. Cryptocorynen - Problempflanzen ? Aqua-Planta 1-82 : 6-7.
Möhlmann, F., 1987. Ein Neuer Wasserkelch: Cryptocoryne villosa.Aquarien-Magazin (1) : 27-29.
Möhlmann, F., 1990. Zur Kultur von Cryptocoryne villosa Jacobsen.  Aqua-Planta 15(4): 141-142.
Wit, H.C.D.de, 1990. Aquarienpflanzen, 2. Auflage. Ulmer, Stuttgart. ISBN 3-8001-7185-6.