The Leng Sy Cap is one of the most legendary and recognizable of all aquarium Montipora corals. First grown by Leng Sy and then popularized on the label of their Reef Solution bottle, this is one aquarium coral strain that never, ever gets old.
Whether you’re hot for the submassive Kung Pao Monti, plating World Wide Corals Grafted Cap, or one of the many multicolored branching Montipora, all reefers still have a place in their aquarium for the hybrid-growth form of the Leng Sy Cap.
The Leng Sy Cap will look good, and grow, and do well in just about any kind of reef environment. However, its growth form is highly dependent on the intensity of the light it receives; and to a lesser degree the water flow it is exposed to.
The shape of the Leng Sy cap can be very flat, smooth and foliaceous in moderate light, as the coral spreads out to catch as much light as possible. In higher light the Leng Sy Cap stays more compact, and begins to develop more detail and surface ridges, and a pronounced, convoluted purple edge.
In very high light, the coral stays even more compact, with the lead growing edge becoming a deep purple and starts breaking up into multiple and almost folding growth margins. There is a tipping point of lighting conditions which stimulates the Leng Sy Cap to develop its telltale nodules and branchlets which themselves can also develop a purple tip.
There are a lot of purple-edged green caps with similar features to the ‘true’ Leng Sy Cap running around. And unless you have a tracked pedigree of lineage of this strain, it’s hard to know if your coral will develop this setlist of really iconic features.
Of course, if you see the mother colony, as we have recently in the reef tank of Dave Botwin, and it shows all of these features in a single colony, chances are that this coral is the real deal. Dave’s big colony of Leng Sy Cap ticks all the hallmarks of this coral strain that has been in the hobby since the late nineties, and under a stack of Radion G3 Pro LED lights it’s really developed into a showpiece colony.