Shmeegs plant graveyard. Where plants go to die - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 15 (permalink) Old 10-30-2011, 02:14 AM Thread Starter
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Shmeegs plant graveyard. Where plants go to die

Migrating my 'new plant tank' thread from APC, seems I might actually get some answers to questions here. I like it better in here anyway. Off we go.

Started this tank about two weeks ago, am in the process of getting correct lighting, DIY CO2 set up and making some sense of the layout so it actually looks somewhat appealing and if I can keep all the fish and plants I keep buying alive, then I can make a tic mark in the W column.

Plants and fish details are here

Here's a couple pics from the start and last weeks renovation

Start:


Week one growth:


Remodeled:


And a couple questions I have:

The vals are looking pretty bad, almost like mush in some spots. Collectively they also look brittle, like they might snap, but they're growing. Not enough light? Lack of CO2? I don't know what to do to make them healthy.

Frans Stoffels sword is slowly turning transparent/brown leaf by leaf. I saw somewhere that this could be because of a CO2 deficiency(?). Not sure what to do for that one either; I started using Flourish Excel a few days ago, hopefully that will help some until the diffuser shows up in the mailbox and I can inject CO2.
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post #2 of 15 (permalink) Old 10-30-2011, 02:15 AM
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Excel is notorious for causing your Vals to melt.

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"C'mon, they're just plants, man, no big deal -- try some"
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post #3 of 15 (permalink) Old 10-30-2011, 02:18 AM Thread Starter
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Excel is notorious for causing your Vals to melt.
Sweet, that was ridiculously fast! Hm, ok I'll quit using it. Should I cut them off below the sloppy spots?
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post #4 of 15 (permalink) Old 10-30-2011, 02:21 AM
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Sweet, that was ridiculously fast! Hm, ok I'll quit using it. Should I cut them off below the sloppy spots?
I would, you could also dose excel at 1/4 or 1/2 strength and probably not melt them off also.

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post #5 of 15 (permalink) Old 10-30-2011, 02:21 AM
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Looking good so far! Yeah, I'd just cut off the bad looking parts of the Val.


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post #6 of 15 (permalink) Old 10-30-2011, 02:25 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks guys! I'll do both
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post #7 of 15 (permalink) Old 11-04-2011, 03:19 AM Thread Starter
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SCORE! Got about 30 clippings in the mail this week and scored an XP4 on clearance at Petsmart tonight.

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post #8 of 15 (permalink) Old 11-04-2011, 03:30 AM
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With vals and excel, you should gradually work up to the full dosage.

Also, Amazon swords will often loose leaves and develop new ones as they settle into your tank. If it is the old leaves that are dying off, and they are being replaced by new ones, I wouldn't worry about it. They are heavy root feeders and would appreciate root tabs pushed into the substrate close to them.
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post #9 of 15 (permalink) Old 11-04-2011, 03:41 AM Thread Starter
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With vals and excel, you should gradually work up to the full dosage.

Also, Amazon swords will often loose leaves and develop new ones as they settle into your tank. If it is the old leaves that are dying off, and they are being replaced by new ones, I wouldn't worry about it. They are heavy root feeders and would appreciate root tabs pushed into the substrate close to them.
Thanks for the help! I quit dosing the excel. I have a DIY CO2 setup hooked up, but I think I drilled the holes too big in the lids and have a leak so I am going to order some bulkhead fittings and redo it. There are a couple new leaves growing on the Frans Stoffels sword, but I'm losing them faster than they are replaced currently. Root tabs, check!
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post #10 of 15 (permalink) Old 11-04-2011, 03:47 AM
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In regards to the sword:

Do this now sooner than later.

1. If you didn't trim up the root ball when you planted it pull it up and do so. I didn't do that to a Rubin sword and just smushed the roots down in the substrate. Well they got all tangled up, went anaerobic and started rotting. By the time I pulled it up you could smell the sulfur/foulness coming off it. Trim the roots up close (1/2-3/4") and let the plant set new ones in its new home. You won't kill it by trimming roots.

2. Give it some root tabs. I don't care what anyone says, swords need tabs to be really healthy. I was just dosing EI for a while and the swords were surviving but not doing well. As soon as I gave it root tabs I started seeing growth. I recommend Rootmedic complete but anything will work most likely.

Other than those two things, like touch of sky said, often you'll get swords in emersed form (I'd say 95% of the time from pet stores.) They'll go through a transition to where they gain their submersed leaves, so you could be seeing some melt from that. However when my amazons did that transition, it just started putting out submersed shaped leaves and I had to remove the emersed form after a while.


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post #11 of 15 (permalink) Old 11-04-2011, 03:56 AM Thread Starter
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^^ Awesome. I didn't trim it, I will do that this weekend with WC. I got it from azgardens-com, but I have no idea if it was emersed or submersed. I just know it looked nice and healthy when it was delivered and now it doesn't. Cool, I was looking on the rootmedic site just the other day.
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post #12 of 15 (permalink) Old 11-04-2011, 04:30 AM
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Justin's stuff (Rootmedic) is top notch and he'll take care of you with his customer service. I had great results on my last order. If you go in my thread (1st post) and look at the "previous" pictures with the big swords in the center that's what happens when you give it those things (read: plant version of crack.)


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post #13 of 15 (permalink) Old 11-04-2011, 04:48 AM Thread Starter
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Wow, that was a great lookin tank. The swords were huge!
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post #14 of 15 (permalink) Old 11-08-2011, 05:09 AM Thread Starter
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Ok, things are coming along...sort of. I got the new clippings 'planted' but I'm concerned because some of the clippings are turning black and melting where they were cut. I've also seen this on some clippings I've cut before myself. Is this avoidable? I have Activflora substrate, and I don't feel like the clipped pieces are taking root. Could this be fixed by using something like Aquasoil? I hate to just waste the current 50+ lbs of substrate and the $60 it cost though.

I trimmed down the roots on my FS sword, ordered Rootmedic Complete tabs yesterday and some bulkhead fittings tonight. My CO2 setup was leaking, I'm pretty sure I drilled the tubing holes too big so I'll start fresh when the fittings arrive.

I am seeing algae on the glass suddenly also. I'm sure this is because I have quite a bit of light and no CO2 or fertz yet. What's the rule of thumb for reducing the lights? I have all 72w on for 10hr/day right now. I turned one bulb off today, should I reduce the time down a couple hours also?
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post #15 of 15 (permalink) Old 11-13-2011, 06:06 PM Thread Starter
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Looks like fish come to the graveyard to die too. I saw 2 little white spots on one of the platys a couple days ago and then it spread to the others. I did a 50% water change and worked the temp up to 86, but the loaches are looking severely stressed. I dont know if theyre going to make it the 2 weeks. I'm curious though what the high temp will do to the plants also? I don't have a big enough tank to move them into, should I toss them in 5 gal buckets until the ich is killed off?
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