Pogostemon Stellatus

Erroneously known as Eusteralis stellata in the hobby, Pogostemon stellatus is a perennial, marsh dwelling herb from Southeast Asia and northern Australia.

Because of its extensive and somewhat fragmented geographic distribution, there are many different forms of this plant in the wild.

In recent years, this plant has become increasingly common in the trade due to its well-deserved popularity. P. stellatus is rather difficult to grow, making quite a few demands on the hobbyist to thrive.

Lighting should be intense, since the lower portions of the stems have a tendency to shed leaves otherwise. Stable CO2 injection is a must if one wishes to grow this plant to its full potential. Nitrate, phosphate, and micronutrients should be added via the water column for long term success.

Nitrate (5-20ppm) and phosphate (0.2-2ppm) levels are not too important, as long as they are kept stable. If growing conditions and nutrient levels change too fast, the plant often stunts and produces new side shoots from the top. If both nitrate and phosphate are kept high, this plant will be green.

If the hobbyist chooses to run one or both nutrients on the lean side, P. stellatus will produce purple or orange foliage. This stem plant is also an excellent indicator of iron and micronutrients if there is a deficiency, the leaves will be yellow to white in extreme cases.

P. stellatus is one of the most decorative stem plants in the hobby. It’s striking colour, fine-leaved foliage forms an excellent contrast to other broader leaved or green stem plant.

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