25 Common Water and Aquatic Plants Grown in the Philippines

Philippines is an archipelago with hundreds of creeks, stream, lakes, river and water system. Water plants are plenty and the country is rich in biodiversity. However some of the commonly grown water plants are introduced to the country.

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Freshwater Aquarium set-up by: Mr. Achilles Antiquina Lussier

They are classified into Emergent, Submerged, Floating-leaved, Free-floating. Our team made a short list of 25 common water plants grown or found in semi-naturalized state.

We eliminated Ipomea aquatica or Kangkong / Kangkung, since it is used as food. Better  post in another topic

25 Common Water Plants

25.) Ludwigia sedoides – commonly called Mosaic plant, False Loosestrife. This water plant originates from Brazil, Venezuela. This had become naturalized in many tropical, sub-tropical and even temperate countries.This blooms during June to August which coincide with the rainy season, But this may also bloom during the dry season. Some sell this from Php 50.00 small plant to as much as Php 200 in some online sites.

24.) Myriophyllum aquaticum commonly called parrot’s-feather and parrot feather watermilfoil. Parrot feather gets its name from its feather-like leaves that are arranged around the stem in whorls of four to six. This water plant originally is native of South America and quickly spread via the tropical aquarium trade in North America and elsewhere.

In some countries, Like the United Kingdom, Australia, Japan, Southern United States.  parrot’s-feather can quickly clogged waterways and ponds. The growth can block sunlight and cause native plants to die because of light deficiency. The organisms that feed on the native plants can die off due to starvation.

This is also commonly sold in Cartimar and in many aquarium pet stores all over the country.

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photo courtesy of pixabay : johnnykarlsson1-5486868

23.) Limnobium laevigatum is a floating plant commonly called West Indian spongeplant, South American spongeplant and Amazon or smooth frogbit. This floating plant is native to Central and South America and quickly spread all over the tropical and sub-tropical areas due to aquarium plant trade.

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Cypreus alterniflolius

photo courtesy of : pixabay: jaclou-dl-5602247

22.) Cyperus alternifolius, common names are umbrella papyrus, umbrella sedge or umbrella palm,Indian matting plant. This was native to Madagascar in Africa but quickly spread in many parts of the world.

This is commonly seen in rice paddies, pond, creeks,irrigation canals throughout the country. The umbrella palm is sought after for its impressive height that can grow to six feet. It creates a soft backdrop for shorter aquatic plants, but it can grow notoriously fast and spread if not put in a container.

21.) Eleocharis acicularis is a species of spikeedge known by the common names needle spikerush and least spikerush. This is common in most aquarium stores in Cartimar and pet stores.

20.) Echinodorus grandiflorus Commonly called spade-leaf sword, creeping burhead, Amazon spade leaf. There were at least 40 known species of this genus and quite common in aquarium trade all over the world.

It is native to Brazil, Paraguay, Uruguay, Argentina,Venezuela and Florida in the United States of America.

This plant species is quite common is rice paddies, water irrigation ditches, ponds, lagoon and garden center. Immersed plants readily produce flowers and seeds but it can be grown submersed as well.

Small plants are being sold between Php 25.00 to Php 400 depending on the size. Variegated plants are also sold for a little bit higher compared to the ordinary green leaf types.

19.) Lemma minor commonly called duckweed, or lesser duckweed. Lemna minor or the common duckweed works well as a water purifier. It can help to control algae.

Some of the economic importance of Lemma minor is used as animal fodder, bioremediator, for wastewater nutrient recovery, and other applications.  This is common in rice paddy fields, ponds, aquarium trade and lakes. It is also given as a feed to ducks, chicken and goose.

It is found in many areas of the world and have naturalized in Australia and South America. In aquarium trade, it is sold between Php 5.00 for a small cup to as much as Php 50.00

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photo courtesy of pixabay: laila_-6779063

18.) Ceratophyllum submersum and Ceratophyllum demersum commonly known as the soft hornwort ,tropical hornwort, coontail or coon’s tail . This seems to have naturalized in almost all water system in the country.

Its fluffy, filamentous, bright-green leaves provide excellent cover for newly hatched fish. It is propagated by cuttings.

Sometimes they are so common that backyard hobbyist would give them away as freebies. They are sold between Php 10.00 to Php 50.00 depending on size in online sites.

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photo courtesy of pixabay : loilamtan-4659988/

17.) Hydrocotyle vulgaris, also known as common pennywort, whorled marsh pennywort, shield pennywort, pennyworth, money plant, lucky plant, copper coin, mangkok, Yahong-yahong is a flowering plant found in Europe, North Africa, North Ans Western Asia. This may have been introduced during the late Spanish colonial rule or early American regime in the country.

Sometimes people would mistake this as gotu kola (Centella asiatica), since the leaves are almost the same.  They are sold between Php 20.00 to Php 50.00 in online sites depending on how big the plant.

16.) Azolla pinnata is a species of aquatic fern known by several common names, including mosquito fern, feathered mosquito fern and water velvet. This is common in rice fields and waterways.

15.) Cabomba carolina – This is originally found as an aquatic perennial herbaceous plant native to North and South America. However human migration and introduction spread this water plant in many parts of the world. To some extent, invasive species in Australia, Europe and many parts of tropical, sub-tropical area, temperate areas.

14.) Bacopa monnieri is creeping herb native to the wetlands of southern and Eastern India, Australia, Europe, Africa, Asia, and North and South America. Common names are water hyssop,waterhyssop, brahmi, thyme-leafed gratiola, herb of grace,and Indian pennywort.

13.) Cryptocoryne aponogetifolia is a native to the Philippines and commonly sold in tropical aquarium trade. Cryptocoryne aponogetifolia is considered easy to cultivate and will grow in moderately hard water if necessary, though it grows naturally in slightly soft water. It prefers moderate to low levels of light.

This water plant is found in Negros, Panay islands in the Visayas and Southwestern part of Luzon. This is also found in the Bicol region. Some of the problems encountered by local aquarium hobbyists is the over harvesting, water pollution of this species.

12.) Rotala rotundifolia is found in many South-East Asian countries has long, thin leaves and 15-30 long stems, 2-3 cm wide including the leaves. Unlike other Rotala species it is relatively undemanding, although it needs good light to produce red leaves.

11.) Salvinia it is a species of floating fern and is related to the other water ferns, including the mosquito fern Azolla. There were about 12 species are recognized with at least 3 are known to be hybrids. This is commonly seen in ponds, rice fields, water ways, pond, irrigation canals and popular in aquarium trade.

10.) Vallisneria genus was named after an Italian (Antonio Vallisner who lived from  May 3, 1661 – Padua to January 18, 1730) He was an Italian medical scientist, physician and naturalist.

2.) Pistia stratiotes commonly called kiapo, kiyapo, quiapo, kuyapo, cuyapo, apon, loloan, water lettuce, water cabbage, tropical duckweed, Nile cabbage or shellflower- Water lettuce is among the world’s most productive freshwater aquatic plants and considered an invasive species in other countries.

In some countries like India ( famine food), Southern parts of China and Africa. Young leaves are usually boiled to remove the acridity from calcium oxalate crystals.

The district of Quiapo in downtown Manila and the town of Cuyapo in Nueva Ecija was name after this plant. There were abundant kiyapo growing the creeks and river tributaries. Some local garden center sells Pistia stratiotes between Php 10.00 to Php 75.00 depending on the size.

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Eichhornia crassipes or Water hyacinth

1.) Eichhornia crassipes, known as water hyacinth or incorrectly called water lily is an aquatic plant native to the Central and South American countries.

Water hyacinth was introduced to the country by the Spaniards in the late 16th century in the country, It is now found in many parts of the world. Sometimes people would incorrectly called this was water lily and a festival is celebrated yearly in Las Piñas City.

Sipag Villar Foundation provides livelihood opportunity to women by helping them make products from water hyacinth. There are many uses of the stems such as wreath, baskets, mats, woven bags, tissue holder and slippers. Their livelihood advocacy had spread in many areas of the country.

However in many parts of the globe, this plant is considered as invasive species.

Bibliography, Sources and References:

Personal Interviews : Mr. Jose Juan Paraiso, Mr. Achilles Antiquina Lussier, Mr. Aira Certeza, Mr. Edwin Aytona, Architect Andrew Patrick Gozon, Ms. Marge Hermoso, Mr. Joselito Flores and Ms. Lily Chin

Yeow Chin Wee,Marshal Cavendish Times Editions; Revised Edition edition (2005),Ferns of the Tropics: ISBN-10: 9812611797, ISBN-13:978-9812611796

The anti-aging effects of Ludwigia octovalvis on Drosophila melanogaster and SAMP8 mice / Wei-Sheng Lin, Jun-Yi Chen, Jo-Chiao Wang, Liang-Yu Chen et al / Age (Dordr), Apr 2014; 36(2): 689-703 / doi:  10.1007/s11357-013-9606-z

Slocum, Perry D., Timber Press, Incorporated; 1st ed. edition (February 1, 2005)Waterlilies and Lotuses: Species, Cultivars, and New Hybrids : ISBN-10:0881926841, ISBN-13:978-0881926842

Randall, Karen A., Sunken Gardens:Timber Press (February 14, 2017) A Step-by Step Guide to Planting Freshwater Aquariums, ISBN-10: 1604695927, ISBN-13: 978-1604695922

Pistia stratiotes” USGS Nonindigenous Aquatic Species Database, Gainesville, FL, and NOAA Great Lakes Aquatic Non-indigenous Species Information System, Ann Arbor, MI.

“Lemna System for Wastewater Treatment”. National Environmental Technology Applications Corporation. 412: 826–5511.

Lazkov, G.A. & Sultanova, B.A. (2011). Checklist of vascular plants of Kyrgyzstan. Norrlinia 24: 1-166.

Lansdown, R.V. 2014. Hydrocotyle vulgaris. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2014: e.T164201A42415437.

Lambert Derek, Quick Graham, Swindells Philip. CompanionHouse Books; First Trade Paper edition (September 1, 2006): ISBN-10 :1931993815, ISBN-13:978-1931993814

Jain, S. K. (1990).Azolla pinnata R.Br. and Lemna minor L. for removal of lead and zinc from polluted water. Water Research 24:2 177-83.

Huxley, A., ed. (1992). New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. Macmillan ISBN 0-333-47494-5.

Hiscock, Peter: Interpet Ltd (April 30, 2005). Mini Encyclopedia of Aquarium Plants, ISBN-10 :1842861042, ISBN-13:978-1842861042

Hassler, Michael & Schmitt, Bernd (January 2020). “Leptochilus pteropus“. Checklist of Ferns and Lycophytes of the World. Version 8.20. Retrieved 2020-02-11.

Hasan, M.R. (2009). “Use of algae and aquatic macrophytes as feed in small-scale aquaculture – a review”. FAO Fisheries and Aquaculture Technical Paper.

Gleason, H.A. and A. Cronquist. 1991. Manual of Vascular Plants of Northeastern United States and Adjacent Canada. The New York Botanical Garden, Bronx, New York.

Garai, S; Mahato, SB; Ohtani, K; Yamasaki, K (2009). “Dammarane triterpenoid saponins from Bacopa monnieri“. Can J Chem. 87 (9): 1230–1234.

Dkhar J, Kumaria S, Rama Rao S, Tandon P (2012) Sequence characteristics and phylogenetic implications of the nrDNA internal transcribed spacers (ITS) in the genus Nymphaea with focus on some Indian representatives. Plant Systematics and Evolution 298: 93–108.

Davidse, G., M. Sousa Sánchez & A.O. Chater. 1994. Alismataceae a Cyperaceae. 6: i–xvi, 1–543. In G. Davidse, M. Sousa Sánchez & A.O. Chater (eds.) Fl. Mesoamer.. Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, México, D. F.

Cuyapo, Nueva Ecija website

Coetzee, J., M. Hill, M. Julien, T. Center, and H. Cordo. 2009. Eichhornia crassipes (Mart.) Solms–Laub. (Pontederiaceae). Pages 183–210 in R. Muniappan, G. V. P. Reddy, and A. Raman, eds., Biological Control of Tropical Weeds using Arthropods. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, UK.

Christenhusz, Fay, and Chase (2017). Plants of the World: An Illustrated Encyclopedia of Vascular Plants. University of Chicago Press. p. 188.

C. Kasselmann. 2011. Myriophyllum aquaticum (Vellozo) Verdcourt var. santacatarinense Kasselman, var. nov. (Haloragaceae). Aqua Planta 36 (4): 128-133.

Brunner, Gerhard. 1973. Aquarium Plants. T.F.H. Publ., N.J.

Bogner, J., 1990. Filipino Cryptocoryne. Aquarist & Pondkeeper January 1990 : 38.

Aquascape Lifestyles Book, The Pond Guy Publications; 1st edition (January 12, 2007)The Hobbyyist’s Guide to Pond Plants : ISBN-10:097865062X : ISBN-13: 978-0978650629

Anderson, Lars, and Pat Akers. “Spongeplant: A New Aquatic Weed Threat in the Delta.” Cal-IPC News 19.1 (2011): 4-5. Print.

 

10 Additional Myths about Coronavirus Debunked

Coronavirus 2019 is still on a rise with more than 11,500,000 cases around the world and almost 46,000 cases in the country.

I wrote few months ago on the 30 Myths about Coronavirus 2019 and there are still a lot of additional myths that were not totally proven by adequate studies.

Additional Myths about Cornavirus Debunked

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photo courtesy of pixabay : camera-man-16096197

10.) Insects, Mosquitoes and Flies are carriers of COVID 2019

Fact: There is no indication that house flies, insects or even mosquitoes can transmit the virus either through a bite or by landing on an infected surface. Always clean and disinfect ourselves whenever we hold anything or before eating.

9.) Ultra Violet Disinfection lamp can kill the virus , There are several UV disinfection lamps for sale posted in social media sites, online and stores.

Fact: There are no concrete study that having UV disinfection lamp can kill the virus. Aside from being expensive, UV radiation can cause skin irritation and can be harmful to eyes. UV lamps should not be used to sterilize hands or other areas of skin.

8.) Taking antibiotics can kill coronavirus 2019

Fact: Antibiotics kill bacteria, but they don’t kill viruses.

7.) Drinking cow, dog or human urine can protect a person from contracting the virus

Fact: Cow, human or dog urine has long been promoted as a traditional remedy for various diseases in China, India and even in the Philippines , but there is no medical evidence or study to show that urine can help protect a person against contracting virus.

6.) Wearing of medical mask can cause suffocation and can cause CO2 intoxication.

Fact: There were some rumors and pseudo facts which circulated in many online sites that  wearing a face covering can cause you to breathe in too much carbon dioxide or limit your ability to get enough oxygen.

There were some people who wore N95 mask have experienced difficulty in breathing since some of them have asthma or had pre-exsisting respiratory disease. Tiny particles can accumulate inside of the mask over the course of several hours of continued use. But it does not affect breathing.

According to World Health Organization (WHO) and Department of Health (DOH), there are no truth with the rumors posted in various social media.

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Photo courtesy of: pixabay richardmc-1834381

4.) One can get coronavirus 2019  in swimming pools

Fact: According to the World Health Organization ( WHO) and experts, there is no evidence to suggest that SARS-CoV-2 spreads between people through the water in swimming pools, hot tubs, or water playgrounds.

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World Health Organization

3.) 5G helps spread the Covid 2019 virus thru air waves and using mobile phones.

Fact: In many areas of the globe,5G mobile technology is quickly catching-up. Plus there is no such truth with the rumors. There are a lot of areas without 5G technology that COVID 2019 virus had spread.

3.)  Can Hydroxychloroquinecure COVID-19?

Fact: There is no proven cure for COVID-19, but most people will recover on their own without needing professional medical care. The misuse of hydroxychloroquine can cause serious side effects and illness and even lead to death.

It is important to follow official government advice and get information only from reliable sources like the World Health Organization (WHO) and Department of Health (DOH ), Center for Disease Control (CDC) among others.

2.) Eating pepper of chilies can prevent or cure Covid 2019.

Fact: Eating pepper or chilies cannot prevent or cure COVID-19. This was clarified in a post in the website of World Health Organization (WHO).

1.) ” Tuob” or steam inhalation as means to help contain the coronavirus disease (COVID-19). This was posted and shared several times in different social media, online sites and some government officials in the south had encourage their constituents.

Facts: Department of Health (DOH) Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said in a June 25 virtual presser that there is “no scientific evidence that steam inhalation kills the SARS-CoV-2 (the virus causing COVID-19).”

The Philippine Medical Association (PMA), an umbrella organization of physicians in the country, denounced Garcia for her “dangerous claims and insults” to medical members who disagreed with her advocacy for tuob.

Here are some of the tips given by Center for Disease Control (CDC), World Health Organization (WHO), Department of Health (DOH-Philippines), John Hopkins and University of the Philippines.

1.) Social distancing and give at least 1 meter distance from people.

2.) Wash you hands frequently with soap, water for at least 20 to 30 seconds. Try to complete the song ” Happy Birthday ” two times!

3.) Avoid touching your eyes, nose, mouth and observe good hygiene.

4.) Cover your cough or sneeze with tissue then properly dispose the tissue in trash or sneeze into your elbow.

5.) Avoid spitting anywhere.

6.) Clean and disinfect frequently.

7.) Stay at Home.

Sources and References: Department of Health ( Philippines), John Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center ( John Hopkins University), World Health Organization, Center of Disease Control (CDC), University of the Philippines,Philippine Medical Assoication, Hong Kong’s Agriculture Fisheries and Conservation Department (AFCD), CNN Philippine interview, PCOO, personal interviews with several health care professionals and epidemiologist.

Vintage Mount Rushmore Postcard

Mount Rushmore is an iconic monument in South Dakota state of the United States of America. This popular landmark is always featured in postcards, photos and memorabilia items along with Arlington cemetery, Both monuments serves as a living testaments of the bravery and heroism of the Americans.

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Mount Rushmore postcard -probably printed around 1960’s

I got this postcard from a fellow postcard collector few years ago from a local stamp collecting club meeting at the iconic Manila Central Post Office.

Mount Rushmore

Mount Rushmore is located in Black Hills in Keystone, South Dakota and the project execution from 1927 to 1941, a period of about 14 years. The sculptor of the project was John Gutzon de la Mothe Borglum (March 25, 1867 – March 6, 1941) ans was continued by his son James Lincoln de la Mothe Borglum (April 9, 1912 – January 27, 1986).

The sculpture bore the 60-foot (18 m) heads of Presidents George Washington (1732–1799), Thomas Jefferson (1743–1826), Theodore Roosevelt (1858–1919), and Theodore Roosevelt (1809–1865). The total project cost cost US$989,992.32 with at least 400 workers involved in the project.

At least 2 million tourists would visit the historic site every year and is one of the top 3 source of revenues of the state of South Dakota.

The iconic landmark was the site where the current president Donald Trump led the 4th of July 2020 celebration.

According to some critics, the local American Indians who consider the Black Hills to be sacred ground.

Happy 4th of July celebrations and Happy Independence Day !

Black Bottle Pop Dolls for Display

Black bottle pop dolls were on display at a thrift store. The black bottles were prop-up by putting some yarn, moving eyes, red lip and skirt. We happen to pass-by this thrift store which sells this bottle pop dolls in North Caloocan while on a short visit.

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Black Bottle Pop Dolls

I do not know if these are made by school children of these are intended as a cheap souvenir items intended for the tourist market. The bottle pop dolls sometimes called bottle doll craft or bottle art dolls were probably made in the 1970’s or early 1980’s. An interesting way to upscale old bottles and giving them another life as display item.

According to a local bottle art doll collector, This can trace as far back as the early 20th century.

These bottle dolls probably came from Japan, South Korea or Southern United States. Bottle doll craft is quite popular in India, Pakistan and Latin American countries as an inexpensive art item or even toy item for children.

Exciting New Flavors at Kreme Kurozato Stall in Goodwill Homes 1, Novaliches

Kreme Kurozato Milktea just recently re-opened their stall in Goodwill Homes 1, Barangay San Bartolome, Novaliches after closing from March 15 to late May 2020 during the Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ). The milk tea stall is a start-up business which opened last September 2019.

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Ms. Julie A. Casampol and Mr. Nico R. Wagwag staff of Kreme Kurazato

The origin of the name was Kreme– Creamy, Kuro– Black, Zato-Sugar in Japanese, But the inspiration was from Taiwan. The young proprietors were avid milk tea lovers and took a short course just to learn the craft. All the concept, logo and recipes of their milk teas were from the proprietors.

They decided to open Kreme Kurazato within Goodwill Homes 1 since they would take a short cut route from Kingspoint Subdivision,pass Goodwill Homes 1,California Village and Sierra Vista on their way to Damong Maliit, Novaliches, North Caloocan.

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Kreme Kurozato Milk Teas

While ordering pizzas from Primas Pizza Delivery along Katipunan Avenue within Goodwill Homes 1, we happen to pass the Kreme Kurazato Milk Tea and pause to buy their milk tea.

Since their opening, The milk tea stall had been receiving great reviews from fellow foodies, bloggers, vloggers, milk tea aficionados and residents living within the community.

Exciting New Flavors of Kreme Kurazato

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new flavors

Among the new flavors were Strawberry Cheese Cake, Oreo Cheese Cake, Blue Berry Cheese Cake and Thai Milk Tea.

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Winter Melon Cream Cheese

The future seems bright as there were clamor for more stalls. Kreme Kurozato can be book via LalaFood Delivery charge to the client. Among their well-loved milk teas are Winter Melon Cream Cheese which cost Php 125.00 and Okinawan Brown Sugar. It is not too sweet, the ingredients were made from premium items. Hence, it is worth your money and effort to visit the stall.

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Thai Milk Tea

My nephew told me that they would buy at least once a week at the stall, since there were many flavors.

Their customers demographics comes from all ages from Kingspoint Subdivision, Kasiyahan Village, San Pedro IX, Grand Monaco Villas, Goodwill Homes II in Barangay Bagbag. Goodwill Homes I, California Village, Sierra Vista, Doña Faustina, Greenheight Executive subdivision of Barangay San Bartolome, Torres Village in Barangay Nagkaisang Nayon, Barangay Caybiga, Damong Maliit, Deparo in North Caloocan and residents of Barangay Talipapa in Novaliches, Quezon City.

Note: Prices quoted in this blog were subject to change without prior notification. The author and his relatives are not stakeholders in this featured establishment. All post are the opinion of the author.

Kreme Kurozato Milk Tea

Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/kremeSo /

Address: Block 5 Lot 3P Goodwill Homes 1, Barangay San Bartolome, Novaliches Quezon City

Operations: Everyday from 10:00 am to 8:00 pm