Excel overdosing and plant coloration?...or lighting issue? - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-08-2014, 12:11 PM Thread Starter
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Question Excel overdosing and plant coloration?...or lighting issue?

I have been dosing excel a little over 2x the recommended amount for a few weeks now and it has definitely kept some nasty algae at bay. However, I have noticed that plants that were starting to turn red as they neared the surface have reverted and have started to lose their red/orange/pink. I'm dosing per EI with extra iron, co2 that's nearly enough to gas my fish, and 4 t5ho lights over a 20 long should be more than enough to redden plants right?

I only realized today right when I was about to pour in the excel that it may be the problem.

So my question is, can excel cause harm to plants like Ludwigia repens, Limnophila aromatica, Naesae sp red, and Alternanthera reineckii? I know it can and will melt a val and some others, but it didn't cross my mind that about these other plants that have slowly been losing color.

I held today's dose and plan on stepping back to the dosing on the label.

- Garrett

Last edited by Cap10Squirty; 06-10-2014 at 01:41 PM. Reason: could be a different problem.
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-08-2014, 01:46 PM
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If this mostly centers around Ludwigia R. then know that this plant can turn other colors for no reason that you can see.
I use 2x the recommended doses of Excel and with none of any effects like that.
But if you want a suggestion...turn off two bulbs or unplug them from the fixture wires.
Try that for 30 days. I have Alternanthera reineckii in two tanks. Both the same height
as yours. One has 2x T5 @ 12" from the sub and the other has 2x T8 @ 10.5" from the sub. The T5 tank gets 2x Excel and the T8 tank gets none but has high iron in it.
The AR plants both were planted on the same day and gotten from the same person.
The one in the T8 tank is deformed it has so much iron(a mistake in the sub) but is
much darker red than the one in the T5 tank.
Excel is algaecide at first but breaks down quickly into carbon.
On the other hand...4 T5 bulbs might go for a 29g tank but @ 12-13" from the sub ?
You might include a full tank picture in your thread.

The shortest distance between any two points is a straight line...in the opposite direction...
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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-08-2014, 04:26 PM Thread Starter
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Well it isn't mainly the Ludwigia...I've noticed the L. aromatica which I had growing red has turned green for whatever reason. I have noticed my crypts in the back corner melting....they have been growing fine for several months...but I need to move them out anyway...

About the lighting...I was finishing treating some algae that had been around since I rescaled the entire tank a month ago. Pulling out a lot of plants caused a lot of soil to make it into the water column. The only algae that I get now with these lights is a little dust on the glass that I scrape off every few days.

Here's a full tank shot. This was taken in the morning with the leaves turned up on a lot of plants. The tops of the leaves had been turning red on a few and then started going back to a pale yellow/green.

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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-09-2014, 04:18 AM
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If you are using CO2, you don't need any Excel for a carbon source for the fish. But, you do need to keep the CO2 bubble rate as high as you can without harming the fish. You have an awful lot of light, unless those bulbs have poor reflectors. Excel isn't likely to be enough to keep algae from taking off with that much light. In order to help the fish live with the CO2 you also need to keep the water surface rippled all over, to help keep the water well oxygenated.

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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-09-2014, 11:19 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hoppy View Post
If you are using CO2, you don't need any Excel for a carbon source for the fish. But, you do need to keep the CO2 bubble rate as high as you can without harming the fish. You have an awful lot of light, unless those bulbs have poor reflectors. Excel isn't likely to be enough to keep algae from taking off with that much light. In order to help the fish live with the CO2 you also need to keep the water surface rippled all over, to help keep the water well oxygenated.
Hey Hoppy, thank you for the reply. I know Excel is not needed with pressurized CO2. I'm only using it because I had it before I went pressurized and it was part of my regimen and I've seen it work on algae...so I kept it up (only increased it in the past couple of weeks).

I do have a lot of light. I am using an aquaponics quad T5 HO....here's a thread where I included photos of the fixture. https://www.plantedtank.net/forums/sh...ght=aquaponics

3 of the bulbs are mixed 6500k and the fourth is a Giesemann Aqua Flora. I've been running these lights for 2 weeks and the only algae I have is minor dust algae that I clean off the glass every few days. I had been dealing with a bout of bba and some other green/blue junk from a major rescaping and messing with the substrate. That started a few weeks before the lights and since I have treated with the "one-two" H2O2/Excel treatment and it's all gone..

I'm well aware that I have a lot of light...and I can't figure out why my plants all went pale. I would expect them to color up under such lighting.. It must have been the Excel OD or the H2O2/Excel punch from last week.
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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-09-2014, 01:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cap10Squirty View Post

I'm well aware that I have a lot of light...and I can't figure out why my plants all went pale. I would expect them to color up under such lighting.. It must have been the Excel OD or the H2O2/Excel punch from last week.
"red" isn't necessarily a sign of health.. as to the above.. and red.. almost anything is possible..

That gluteraldehyde is interfering in "red" pigment production is a possibility (no basis for this statement really) but would generally not be something to worry about from a plant growth standpoint. If growth slows or other "signs" of distress show up (like melting) then that could be an issue.

Another possibility would be a spike of nitrates..

Then again double dosing Excel is a risk anyways..Gluteraldehyde is really a nasty chemical which is why is is used as a sterilizer..

I use it myself at times, but w/ CO2 injection using it over a long period of time w/ higher doses.. well who knows..some have fine success w/ it and it does break down fast.
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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-10-2014, 04:11 AM
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You probably have 120-150 PAR with that light at about 6 inches above the top of the tank. That is a huge amount of light for a planted tank, so much that your plants have to be short on the amount of carbon needed to grow at the fast rate the light drives them to. So, the plants are very likely not very healthy. And, if your fertilizer dosing is not as high as it needs to be, they could be lacking in other nutrients too. Why not use only two bulbs in that light fixture?

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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-10-2014, 04:24 AM
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Im messing around with a crude, high-tech 20H with way too much light. Im finding that should be "red'' plants tend to look like crap regardless of fert/co2 levels. Tifwiw


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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-10-2014, 12:24 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hoppy View Post
You probably have 120-150 PAR with that light at about 6 inches above the top of the tank. That is a huge amount of light for a planted tank, so much that your plants have to be short on the amount of carbon needed to grow at the fast rate the light drives them to. So, the plants are very likely not very healthy. And, if your fertilizer dosing is not as high as it needs to be, they could be lacking in other nutrients too. Why not use only two bulbs in that light fixture?
So this is likely a lighting issue instead of a chemical problem (excel). I really like the visual spectrum that the 4 bulb combo puts out (especially when I had an aquaflora + UVL red sun + 2 6500ks). I think I'll pull one of the 6500k bulbs out, put the UVL red sun back in and raise the lighting a couple of inches and see what happens in a weeks time. Would that help out?

*Edit* I raised the light to 1 foot off of the top of the aquarium. I know that's quite a jump...but I'm willing to experiment around. Also...it sure is nice to be able to see the top of my plants again

Last edited by Cap10Squirty; 06-10-2014 at 12:48 PM. Reason: made some changes
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