Rotala macrandra problems - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 05-03-2006, 08:55 AM Thread Starter
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Rotala macrandra problems

I can't work out where I'm going wrong with my R. macrandra. It appears to be growing as fast as ever bit the leafs and stems are smaller than usual. It even still pearls alot. Also the edges of the leafs have curled up. What does surprise me is the colour which is a deep red. It used to be a nice pink/red colour. I'm dosing using the EI method adding potassium nitrate, fleet and potassium sulphate. Then my micros are the UK equivalent of csm+b traces. As the water here is rock hard I cut with RO water 3:1 which gives kh of 4 and gh of 6. Loads of CO2 is going in which gives a pH ranging from 6.2 to 6.4. No algae grows and all my other plants grow mad. Lighting is 3wpg of T8 fluorescent.

The only areas I could see where I might be lacking is with calcium and magnesium. Can't believe it is calcium so have started to add some magnesium sulphate in with my dosing schedule. Adding 2ppm Mg 3x a week. It's been nearly a week now and haven't noticed any real changes.

Is anybody able to shed some light on where I might be going wrong.

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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 05-03-2006, 12:02 PM
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curling leaves are a symptom of ca deficency (many other as well, but you seem to be dosing well). Is the problem with the new leaves or old? Ca and Mg are a double edged sword, they will promote healthy growth but will also increase your GH.
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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 05-03-2006, 12:21 PM Thread Starter
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The curling is in new leaf growth. I agree with you on the calcium but I just find it hard to believe that with my hard water there is a shortage of calcium. Also what puzzles me is how red the leaves and stems are. This would suggest a nitrogen deficiency to me but I bung loads of it in. Maybe the way to be sure is to reconstitute my own RO water rather than adding tap water.
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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 05-03-2006, 02:59 PM
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I had some leaf curling before, most noticeable in my new A. reineckii growth, and also have hard water (~11 degrees). In my case, it turned out to be a micro deficiency. The problem went away when I upped my micros dosing.

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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 05-03-2006, 04:26 PM
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You might want to test your Ca concentration anyways. High gH may also be due to a large concentration of Mg, Ca may not necessarily be that high.

I have somewhat of a similar problem with my R. macrandra green, but the water where I live is soft so I have to add Ca. Also, I found that when the plant starts producing a lot of branches (even without pruning) it seems to form smaller and smaller leaves. Maybe you could replant single unbranched stems.
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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 05-03-2006, 05:20 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for your thoughts. I think I might purchase a Ca kit just to set my mind at rest.

I've attached 2 photos as it's so much easier to see than me trying to explain. The first is of my spindly R. Macrandra. The second is of my Willow Leaf Stricta which seams to have developed a reddish tint on some of the top leafs. Is this normal as this has only just recently occurred. It normally just stays green.

Last edited by JamesC; 05-05-2006 at 08:35 PM.
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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 05-05-2006, 08:45 PM Thread Starter
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I brought a Ca test kit today just to confirm what I thought my Mg levels are, and I was correct. My GH comes out at 23 and my Ca kit comes out at 160ppm. This by my calculations gives me 2.4ppm Mg. ie all my GH is calcium. As I cut my tap water with RO water 3:1 this gives me 40ppm Ca. I'm going to add enough magnesium sulphate to bring my Mg levels up to about 12ppm. Hopefully this should fix my problems.
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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 05-06-2006, 12:06 AM
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The second plant looks like it is close to the light, so that maybe why it is turning red. Add some Epson Salts to get your Mg up
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