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  Topic Review (Newest First)
07-10-2019 05:50 AM
bluesamphire Yup - total agreement with Old Dog and Russell.

If you get floating plants (I use watersprite and ficcia fluitans and hornwort in different tanks) then they actually also do a very good job at filtering the light and absorbing excess nutrients.

In my recently set up tanks I am using a substrate with fertiliser in it and also adding liquid fertiliser to the water. But it is worth noting that I am ONLY adding the liquid because I have free floating surface plants, and they need nutrients in the water, not just the substrate. And I have high nitrates in the water, and want A LOT of rapid growth to reduce them. If I just had planted plants, I wouldn't be adding liquid ferts for around a year or so, or until the growth rate slowed.

Also, the water flow always pushes the surface plants over to certain areas of the tank, and the algae growth is ALWAYS less in the shade of the surface plants. Actually, I end up pruning them back to let enough light through for the planted plants underneath.

Worth also bearing in mind that when we buy a plant we do not know the light levels, water chemistry that it was grown in, nor do we know whether it was grown emersed or immersed. Some species are grown out of water, and then sold to us ready for submerging. This can be a bit of a shock for the plant! In such cases, it can take a while (sometimes months) for the plant to adapt to our water conditions. So I always expect a few yellowed and dying leaves, a knock back in growth, and then after a pause, the new growth starts. This new growth is now adapted to my tank, and is often slightly different - darker or lighter, smaller or larger, even a different colour. Crypts are notorious for this, and often die back completely before sprouting a new adapted version of themselves.

So yes, make the changes suggested by OD and Russell, but also bear in mind that tank setting up is like watching paint dry, and plants simply don't work to our schedules! :)
07-10-2019 04:12 AM
Old Dog 59 Can't ask for better information than this.
07-09-2019 09:55 PM
RussellTheShihTzu The problem with plants is the same symptoms can indicate opposing causes. Too much light? Leaves yellow. Too little light? Leaves yellow. Confusing, is it not?

Are the Java Fern and Anubias planted in the substrate; i.e., the rhizome where the leaves originate are buried? I have a friend who owns a plant business in Florida (used to be in Alabama) who clones Anubias. He said it is extremely important that they be in low light; that they are basically shade plants which is why they do so well with Betta.

As Rainbo suggested, I would float some stem plants like Anacharis or Hornwort to help get rid of the algae. This would also create shade and reduce the impact of bright light on low-light plants. Which brings me to say length of time a light is on is different from brightness. Even low-light plants need eight hours of light but they don't need the bright light. Do not plant; instead, weight them in a corner to flow over the surface. Until you get them, I would place some paper over the canopy to dim the light. DO NOT GET DUCKWEED!!! You will thank me for that bit of information.

Old Dog 59 is spot-on that minimal algae can be the sign of a healthy tank; however, I would add that when algae starts to take over and grow on substrate, walls, etc., there is a nutrient/light imbalance. In your case, I agree with both of the above and believe the light is too bright and the nutrients too many. As suggested, stop with the liguid ferts for a bit. If you can, try to remove the plant tabs but substrate ferts don't really impact the water column that much.

Add the floating plants, stop the water column ferts, make sure the Java Fern and Anubias are not planted, get a timer so lights come on for eight hours per day. To suit my schedule, mine are on from 4:00 pm to midnight.

I don't think we've forgotten anything.
07-09-2019 09:00 PM
Rainbo Besides the light being on too long, the other thing that will cause algae growth is all the fertilizer. If the plants are not using it up the algae will fill in and begin to do so, it's why those who do natural planted tanks stress fast growing stem plants when setting up the tank.
07-09-2019 08:43 PM
Old Dog 59 Is the tank in a sun lit room? Near a window? The lighting I see may be medium to high light source and this would cause the algae problem along with too much light for the low light type of plants you have. The lighting itself could cause burning and browning. if you want you could switch hoods to a florescent light (daylight type not plant light) would be a good light source and be considered a low light. There are Led hoods that fit a 10 gal. with three sets of 3 LED which would be the sane as you get on a Kit tank.

Having algae in the tank shows the tank is healthy and the water parameters are right. If you need to clean it off the sides and front more than once a week then I would say you have a greater bloom caused by the lighting. You could get rid of the algae the old fashioned way and put in a few mystery or nerite snails.

You can also try aeration which would help your plants also.
07-09-2019 08:18 PM
kristengodsey
Quote:
Originally Posted by Old Dog 59 View Post
From What I can see of the plants. They are starting to yellow the tips are browned out ( fertilizer burn) and they are lacking light.

you have an enriched substrate and have put plant tabs in already and you use flourish. With the enriched substrate there is no need to use plant tabs until the substrate is about a year old. and really even then if you use flourish once a week as is recommended You still may not need the plant tabs.
Your lighting is only 4 hours a day aquatic plants (even low light plants need at least 6-8 hours of light per day. I would get a manual timer and set the times for 8 hours on every day.
It’s interesting to hear that because I assumed the tank was getting too much light. I always get green algae growing on the sides of the tank, all over the substrate and on the decor plus the black stuff on the larger plant. How can I balance it all?
07-09-2019 08:11 PM
Old Dog 59 From What I can see of the plants. They are starting to yellow the tips are browned out ( fertilizer burn) and they are lacking light.

you have an enriched substrate and have put plant tabs in already and you use flourish. With the enriched substrate there is no need to use plant tabs until the substrate is about a year old. and really even then if you use flourish once a week as is recommended You still may not need the plant tabs.
Your lighting is only 4 hours a day aquatic plants (even low light plants need at least 6-8 hours of light per day. I would get a manual timer and set the times for 8 hours on every day.
07-09-2019 07:53 PM
kristengodsey
What am I doing wrong? Plants dying

About 6 months ago I completely wiped out my old betta’s 10 gallon tank to revamp it for a new betta. I knew I wanted it to be planted and i was determined to do it right this time. The problem is that the plants are hardly growing, and they’re either in horrible condition or have died.

I’m using either eco compete or floramax, I don’t remember which one but I’m pretty sure it’s floramax. I’m running an aquaclear 20 on the tank and using what I thought was a pretty powerful led light. There is no timer, however I am careful about how much time I leave it on for during the day. Honestly it’s usually no more than 4 hours Monday - Friday because I’m at work most of the day, then on and off periodically during the weekend. I also use Fluval Flourish tabs and add Seachem Flourish to the water. I do weekly water changes and vacuum the substrate.

The first photo is from when i first set the tank up. All of the plants were healthy and seemed to be thriving. Since then I’ve added a few silk plants as the live plants started dying off. The following photos were taken today after a water change. The black on the Anubias plant doesn’t come off when I rub it with my finger so I’m not really sure what to do.

What could the problem be here and what can I do to fix it? I’ve never had great luck with live plants but it’s also never been this bad.

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