Rotala dying, what do I do!
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Old 08-24-2013, 06:51 PM   #1
fogduck
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Rotala dying, what do I do!


This is all amateur hour, sorry for writing a whole book here. So I set up my first planted tank on Aug. 15. The substrate is mineralized Miracle Gro Organic with dispersed red clay chunks and a cap of Eco Complete. Light is a Finnex FugeRayR (6700k) on for two four-hour periods a day with a midday break. I added an hour to each period today to see if more light helps. No CO2, and an Eheim 2211 canister filter. 50-75% water changes daily.

I planted a couple of anubias variants, dwarf sag, rotala rotundifolia, and a free-floating clump of java moss. The anubias all looks good - the minima came with a rolled-up new leaf that has since opened, the dwarf sag is putting out new growth, everything took a beating in shipping but the rotala just looks ghostly. See my photo!

It started putting out new growth at the tips, but the older portions of the stems seem to be disintegrating faster than new growth can take off. Some of it is slimy, or breaking. All the old leaves are transparent and they flutter off with slight water movement. I'm afraid the lower part of the plants will die completely before the new growth is big enough to snip off and replant.

Is this stuff salvageable? Should I snip the new growth and replant it even though it's so tiny? Is more light even a good idea? I also started half-dosing flourish excel today (previously I wasn't dosing anything at all).

Basically, is this rotala normal? I just want to do what I can to keep it from totally dying out of the tank. At first I thought it was just adjusting and I should leave it alone, but now I'm afraid of it totally rotting in the time that I'm 'letting it adjust'. Thanks for reading!
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Old 08-24-2013, 07:10 PM   #2
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50-75% water changes daily.

Why the constant massive water changes?
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Old 08-24-2013, 07:16 PM   #3
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Quote:
SunDevil76

Why the constant massive water changes?
I read to do big ones for the first few weeks due to the potting soil throwing huge amounts of excess nutrients into the water column, and creating algae blooms. I'm very gentle with the water in/water out though, I siphon with 9mm airline tubing and nothing moves in the tank. New water gets treated with seachem prime. Is rotala sensitive to water changes?
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Old 08-24-2013, 08:49 PM   #4
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Sounds like the rotala you received was probably grown outside of water and it is now adjusting, or trying to adjust, to submerged life. Much of it will melt and then hopefully it will start growing for you. You might lost it all before it starts to recover but hopefully a few pieces make it and once it starts to grow it will grow pretty fast.
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Old 08-26-2013, 02:34 PM   #5
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^agreed
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Old 08-26-2013, 02:44 PM   #6
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You might try floating it for a while. Don't let the rotting parts remain in the tank.
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Old 08-26-2013, 06:03 PM   #7
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You might try floating it for a while. Don't let the rotting parts remain in the tank.
I cut them out today. I know the buyer I purchased them from grows all his plants immersed, so I don't think it's a case of the plant trying to switch over.

About 2 hours ago I basically cut the growing tips off and replanted, then threw away the stems - they varied from 'slightly mushy' to 'incredibly mushy' and now there are dead leaves tumbling all around the tank. I didn't realize how dead they were til I started touching them and they began to fall apart.

I don't know why these images are loading sideways, they're right-side-up on my computer... but this is how it's looking now. I left some of the firmer stems planted in case maybe they grew roots?
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Old 08-26-2013, 07:45 PM   #8
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I don't think you have much choice but I would float some. Emersed rotala doesn't look like that at all, so yes it was submersed. I find it is pretty hardy stuff once it gets to like you! Just don't let it pollute the tank you can always get some more.
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Old 08-27-2013, 03:35 PM   #9
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Quote:
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I don't think you have much choice but I would float some. Emersed rotala doesn't look like that at all, so yes it was submersed. I find it is pretty hardy stuff once it gets to like you! Just don't let it pollute the tank you can always get some more.
Thanks, BruceF. It wouldn't have occurred to me to float any. I pulled up some of the stems, so if any of it recovers (in substrate or floating), at least I'll have some to build back up from!
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Old 08-27-2013, 06:57 PM   #10
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In an independant reaearch class I did last semester at college I'm pretty sure I saw that rotalas grew better at a lower ph. Not sure what your ph is now but it could be something to try.
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Old 08-27-2013, 07:28 PM   #11
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The summer break has been too long.

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