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Old 04-27-2013, 12:10 PM   #1 
VegasShimmer
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Newbie at NPT - Should I toss and start over?

I have two divided 10g tanks, and have always loved the natural plants over the plastic ones. The tank on the right was setup about 2-1/2 months or so ago. The one on the left is just about a month old. The top pic is what they looked like just a week ago - everything seemed to be thriving, green, and healthy. I did a scheduled 25% change on Wednesday. However, on Friday, the left tank plants leaves turned translucent, and I realized this was because of a nutrient deficiency. I added some plant food and liquid fert, and have the flora light on for 10-12 hours a day (normal routine). I've checked the levels and all are fine for now - except alk was a bit low, but that is all.

Should I toss and start over? I was wanting to try another substrate other than gravel, because I don't believe I have enough gravel and it doesn't do the plants any good. I've read up on the 'no rinse' substrate, and want to order some from Petco.

Also, for now, are the yellowing/translucent leaves bad for the tank/fish? Can they poison the water/fish? Can the plants recover from this?

Please don't criticize about plants. I love my tall swords because they keep the logs in place. I realize they will eventually outgrow the tank.
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Old 04-27-2013, 12:43 PM   #2 
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Swords are heavy root feeders they need a good substrate to strive more better. The yellowing of leaves is normal if you just put them in there. After I put new swords in substrate some leaves naturally turn yellow due to the plant getting used to new water parameters, so I just clip those off and within a day or two a new leaf will sprout up.
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Old 04-27-2013, 03:53 PM   #3 
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enriched substrate is hardly worth the cost, what type of fert did you use by chance? looks like a Nitrogen defiancy to me and a little more extreme then acclimation stress.
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Old 04-27-2013, 05:18 PM   #4 
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Money has nothing to do with my choice, I just want what is best for the plants and fish. I WANT a successful NPT. I am just thinking the gravel isn't the best for the swords, and I am already in love with a color of enriched substrate that Petco sells. I treated with CO2, food, and fert (leaf zone) last night. The plants have been in there for a month, they are not newly acclimated. I am wondering if the water change (I also changed the filter) had something to do with it - perhaps I took away too many nutrients. Will the yellowing leaves hurt the fish? I want to change out the gravel, but probably can't do it until next weekend. I would obviously take out the plants if they looked slimy or dead.
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Old 04-27-2013, 05:24 PM   #5 
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leaf zone is mostly iron, will hardly help the swords. look for seachem product called flourish comprehensive fert. has a balanced amount of macro and micro nutirents the plants need. you will want to use both root tabs and a liquid fert as plants take up nutrients from both leaf and root.

if your pockets are deep get it though don't expect much of a difference. washed playsand will work just as well and the same with any 2mm diameter gravel. i assume you are using a liquid form of co2? that can actually melt plants and the active ingredient is used in medical sterilization, human embalming and barnicale cleaning from ships along with many other extreme tasks.

the plant will start to rebound once a balance is achived.
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Old 04-27-2013, 05:38 PM   #6 
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MoneyMitch - Thanks! I will go out tomorrow and look for that. Does Petco/Petsmart sell that fert product? I was told Leaf Zone was all I needed. I will also pick up some root tabs. I want to try and save these plants because they are basically healthy and nice. The CO2 is almost gone, and I never really saw any big change in plants by using it. I will probably not buy it again. I don't have deep pockets full of money to throw away, but when I do something, I want to do it right.
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Old 04-27-2013, 05:54 PM   #7 
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i can pretty much gurantee those stores will not carry the flourish, ive never found it there. i am lucky enough to have a plant friendly lfs here. i would look online for it drfostersmith.com is a great site to buy from. ive bought many things from them and their customer service is GREAT!

take a look at the difference in elaf zone ingredients then look at flourish ingredients - then itll hit you there is a world of difference. the liquid co2 prob didn't do much but cause the plants to wilt that much faster without a nutrient balance.
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Old 04-27-2013, 10:22 PM   #8 
SerenaRena
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i love the way you set up your tanks, they look great!
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Old 04-28-2013, 06:59 AM   #9 
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I have dirted tanks capped with sand, and my swords really love it. I thought about going the root tab route, but this way is really easy and has been very successful for me.

As long as you use a thick enough cap, and move plants carefully, it really doesn't have any negatives.
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Old 04-28-2013, 08:00 AM   #10 
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I agree on the look of the tanks!!! NICE!!!
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