Need help diagnosing growth problems - The Planted Tank Forum
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
post #1 of 24 (permalink) Old 02-12-2012, 03:42 AM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
 
PTrader: (3/100%)
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: NJ
Posts: 39
Need help diagnosing growth problems

I need some helping diagnosing what I'm missing. My "hardy" plants never really took off and my newer, more sensitive plants, are just rotting away. I'm extremely frustrated and need your expert opinions before I shell out more $ test kits, additives, or break the tank down.

The leaves yellow or become transparent starting from tip and fall off. Holes sometimes appear as well. Old leaves are most effected. New growth is slow. Potted, rooted in substrated, and floating plants are equally effected.

Tank: 20g tall
Substrate: generic petco 5mm-10mm river rock.
Light: Odyssea 2x 6700K 24W T5HO 10 hours/day. Tried running with 1 and 2 bulbs, the only difference was algae growth.
CO2: 2ml Fourish Excel daily. Saw no difference after starting the regiment. DIY CO2 in progress.
Additives: Fourish 1.5ml once or twice a week.
pH/KH/GH: 7.4/3dH/10dH
Ammonia/Nitrites/Nitrates: 0/0/20+
Potassium and Phosphates not tested yet.
Flora: Old (1year): anubias nana, java fern, amazon sword, borneo sword - surviving but far from thriving (slow growth, holes in leaves)
New (1 month): pogostemon erectus, cyperus helferi, hygrophelia compact, and golden lloydiella - 25%-50% of leaves are yellowing or fell off already.
Algae Control: 2 SAEs
Rostasteve is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 24 (permalink) Old 02-12-2012, 05:21 AM
Planted Member
 
PTrader: (2/100%)
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Columbia, MO
Posts: 275
maybe try api leaf zone? seems like you might have alot of light with 2 ho's

Check out my 15g Red cherry shrimp tank

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

or my 33G Long

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
biogenetic40379 is offline  
post #3 of 24 (permalink) Old 02-12-2012, 05:24 AM
Planted Tank Guru
 
Noahma's Avatar
 
PTrader: (8/100%)
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Thornton, Colorado
Posts: 4,339
You are going to need a more comprehensive fertilizer routine. the Florish I am guessing your using is Comprehensive? That contains only trace elements, you need the macro elements too with that much light, as well as good stable co2. Take a look here for a well used fert. routine. https://www.plantedtank.net/forums/fe...-regimes_.html

sounds difficult, but it is easy as pie. I would suspect you have a lack of co2 and nitrogen. the holes could be characteristic of a lack of potassium


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.




To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.



To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.



To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.



To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
Noahma is offline  
 
post #4 of 24 (permalink) Old 02-12-2012, 05:29 AM
Wannabe Guru
 
VeeSe's Avatar
 
PTrader: (8/100%)
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Richmond, VA
Posts: 1,423
Send a message via AIM to VeeSe Send a message via MSN to VeeSe
Yeah, I say cut back on light and dose more completely (make sure to cover nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, and traces)

-VeeSe

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
VeeSe is offline  
post #5 of 24 (permalink) Old 02-12-2012, 06:21 AM
Planted Tank Enthusiast
 
PTrader: (2/100%)
Join Date: Nov 2011
Posts: 828
Your substrate sucks, get one that's more appropriate for growing plants. ADA Aqua Soil, Flourite, Eco-Complete. Switch it out and you're good.
fusiongt is offline  
post #6 of 24 (permalink) Old 02-12-2012, 06:27 AM
Planted Tank Guru
 
Noahma's Avatar
 
PTrader: (8/100%)
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Thornton, Colorado
Posts: 4,339
Quote:
Originally Posted by fusiongt View Post
Your substrate sucks, get one that's more appropriate for growing plants. ADA Aqua Soil, Flourite, Eco-Complete. Switch it out and you're good.
I would not go to that extreme, you can grow plants in almost any substrate, given you give the proper fertilizers. for heavy root feeders might require the use of root tabs which are easily found, and cheap.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.




To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.



To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.



To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.



To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
Noahma is offline  
post #7 of 24 (permalink) Old 02-12-2012, 07:49 AM
Planted Tank Guru
 
Bettatail's Avatar
 
PTrader: (87/98%)
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Pleasanton, CA
Posts: 2,566
Quote:
Originally Posted by Noahma View Post
I would not go to that extreme, you can grow plants in almost any substrate, given you give the proper fertilizers. for heavy root feeders might require the use of root tabs which are easily found, and cheap.


it is combination of methods for healthy growth, I think a good substrate is one of the essentials, don't understand the word "extreme".


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

Canon Pimp Club #17
Bettatail is offline  
post #8 of 24 (permalink) Old 02-12-2012, 07:55 AM
Planted Tank Guru
 
Noahma's Avatar
 
PTrader: (8/100%)
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Thornton, Colorado
Posts: 4,339
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bettatail View Post


it is combination of methods for healthy growth, I think a good substrate is one of the essentials, don't understand the word "extreme".
It is an extreme measure to tell someone to tear down the tank and replace the substrate. While normal aquarium gravel might not be optimal for plant growth, I would hardly tear the tank down to change it out with another choice two of which were given as an option contain very little to no nutrients to begin with. The person I was quoting was only referring to the substrate, I believe my earlier post to the original poster covered the other areas.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.




To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.



To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.



To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.



To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
Noahma is offline  
post #9 of 24 (permalink) Old 02-12-2012, 08:03 AM
Wannabe Guru
 
Aquaticfan's Avatar
 
PTrader: (12/100%)
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: USA
Posts: 1,200
Quote:
Originally Posted by fusiongt View Post
Your substrate sucks, get one that's more appropriate for growing plants. ADA Aqua Soil, Flourite, Eco-Complete. Switch it out and you're good.

I agree that this is a far extreme. But I do agree that a proper balance is a needed must. So a good substrate is important. But like myself I use a very very fine gravel. Not as small as sand but its a natural blasting media. I started it off with mixing Osmocote plus with it and with my root feeders I do continue to add Osmocote root tabs under them. I also follow a dry fert program with EI dosing but not to a full extreme. Its modified. In the past My plants have grown very well without Co2 and I just switched to pressurized Co2 about 2 weeks ago. Anyhow With your mix of lights and all your missing all the good stuff fertilizers should provide. You could do Dry ferts as they cost less and keep longer and are easier to dose. Or you could get more complete liquid ferts to dose.

Also with your substrate Dont gravel vacuum it either. Let the detritus and stuff build up in the gravel. Doing so also helps make your substrate a better performer then what it is.

Sun Sun pimp #72
RAOK CLUB # 68

Conway
Aquaticfan is offline  
post #10 of 24 (permalink) Old 02-12-2012, 12:03 PM
Planted Tank Obsessed
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: San Pedro, California
Posts: 326
How old is this tank setup? Very often new plants die off due to being grown immersed at the nursery and need adjustment time being submersed when you put them in your tank. Could it be that?

Getting the right balance of light, CO2 and fertilizers is always tricky. But most plants will survive, but just grow slower or show a growth pattern smaller than the original size.

My "guess" is the whole system is new and going through the new-plant adjustment process. How could all the plants start melting at the same time if they were put in the tank at all different times, I mean months apart not days or a few weeks. I've had plants that melted suddenly appear well after a year of not being seen in the tank, but on the opposite side of the tank from the original planting site.

One thing needed with a plant tank is patience. Trim off the dead or yellow leaves and just wait it out, although that is easier said than done. We all want a tank just like in the books, well I DO anyway, lol.



After 50 years I do a lot of things right, but still get things wrong
Tenor1 is offline  
post #11 of 24 (permalink) Old 02-12-2012, 03:45 PM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
 
PTrader: (3/100%)
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: NJ
Posts: 39
From looking at deficiency descriptions I think I'm short on Phospherus and possibly Potassium. I should have DIY CO2 up and running next week and stop using Excel.

Are P and K treatments universally recommended? From what I've gathered they're only needed in special situations when they aren't available in the water supply.

The progostemon and hygrophila (potted) have already lost 50% of their leaves and don't seem to be recovering.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Noahma View Post
You are going to need a more comprehensive fertilizer routine. the Florish I am guessing your using is Comprehensive? That contains only trace elements, you need the macro elements too with that much light, as well as good stable co2. Take a look here for a well used fert. routine. https://www.plantedtank.net/forums/fe...-regimes_.html
Yes, I'm using Flourish Comprehensive (and Excel). I've been told by several LFSs that adding macro elements is not needed...they don't do it and have good growth using tap water.

Quote:
Originally Posted by VeeSe View Post
Yeah, I say cut back on light and dose more completely (make sure to cover nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, and traces)
I've cut back to a single 24W bulb and no change in plant health. Only less algae growth.

Quote:
Originally Posted by fusiongt View Post
Your substrate sucks, get one that's more appropriate for growing plants. ADA Aqua Soil, Flourite, Eco-Complete. Switch it out and you're good.
I've considered it, but only as a very last resort. Many of my plants aren't root feeders so substrate shouldn't be much of an issue (I think).

Quote:
Originally Posted by Aquaticfan View Post
Also with your substrate Dont gravel vacuum it either. Let the detritus and stuff build up in the gravel. Doing so also helps make your substrate a better performer then what it is.
I did a big gravel cleaning just before planting the new batch, but there's still plenty of crud in there.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tenor1 View Post
How old is this tank setup? Very often new plants die off due to being grown immersed at the nursery and need adjustment time being submersed when you put them in your tank. Could it be that?
1 year old. Java fern, Anubias, Wisteria, and Swords were planted then...Wisteria died fast, the rest keep limping on. The other plants are 1 month old and were shipped cross country (arrived in great condition) so maybe you're right that they need to adjust.
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	photo 1.JPG
Views:	51
Size:	172.8 KB
ID:	41875  

Click image for larger version

Name:	photo 2.JPG
Views:	28
Size:	138.2 KB
ID:	41876  

Click image for larger version

Name:	photo 3.JPG
Views:	32
Size:	103.4 KB
ID:	41877  

Click image for larger version

Name:	photo 4.JPG
Views:	36
Size:	118.6 KB
ID:	41878  

Rostasteve is offline  
post #12 of 24 (permalink) Old 02-12-2012, 05:31 PM
Wannabe Guru
 
Aquaticfan's Avatar
 
PTrader: (12/100%)
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: USA
Posts: 1,200
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tenor1 View Post
How old is this tank setup? Very often new plants die off due to being grown immersed at the nursery and need adjustment time being submersed when you put them in your tank. Could it be that?

Getting the right balance of light, CO2 and fertilizers is always tricky. But most plants will survive, but just grow slower or show a growth pattern smaller than the original size.

My "guess" is the whole system is new and going through the new-plant adjustment process. How could all the plants start melting at the same time if they were put in the tank at all different times, I mean months apart not days or a few weeks. I've had plants that melted suddenly appear well after a year of not being seen in the tank, but on the opposite side of the tank from the original planting site.

One thing needed with a plant tank is patience. Trim off the dead or yellow leaves and just wait it out, although that is easier said than done. We all want a tank just like in the books, well I DO anyway, lol.
While I've seen what your talking about happen to some plants. Especially ones that come from growers with much different water conditions ie: soft vs hard water, temp difference, and substrate differences. I dont see this being an issue for all the plants. I agree with otherd here that have stated fert lacking issue. It's all about balance of what the plants need. A lot of light and not enough nutrients can do what issues he has. Besides it doesn't look like melting issue. But that's what i see.

Sun Sun pimp #72
RAOK CLUB # 68

Conway
Aquaticfan is offline  
post #13 of 24 (permalink) Old 02-12-2012, 05:38 PM
Wannabe Guru
 
Aquaticfan's Avatar
 
PTrader: (12/100%)
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: USA
Posts: 1,200
Just because your lfs told you that you don't need those nutrients doesn't mean its true. Personally unless you have an accurate test for it you don't know what the values are.

Still sounds to me like you are lacking something fert wise. But the plants your getting may be raised in much different conditions then yours. But even at that I wouldn't think all your plants had issues.

Start back at the basics. How hard is your kh/dh? What is your temp? Are you giving any root tabs to root feeders? And get a more complete fert program going. I bet it makes all the difference. The plants look like difficent in things not melting.

Sun Sun pimp #72
RAOK CLUB # 68

Conway
Aquaticfan is offline  
post #14 of 24 (permalink) Old 02-12-2012, 06:49 PM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
 
PTrader: (3/100%)
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: NJ
Posts: 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by Aquaticfan View Post
Start back at the basics. How hard is your kh/dh? What is your temp? Are you giving any root tabs to root feeders? And get a more complete fert program going. I bet it makes all the difference. The plants look like difficent in things not melting.
No root feeders. Temp is 78. pH is 7.2-7.4. kh/gh are 4/10 dH. I might make a trip tomorrow to a store that can test my water (most local places can't).

I'm fine to start dosing with extra ferts, but which ones? Flourish Potassium? Flourish Phospherus? anything else?

I'm using activated carbon (hagen) in my Aquaclear filter. I've been reading that activated carbon may introduce large quantities of phospherus...should I remove it?
Rostasteve is offline  
post #15 of 24 (permalink) Old 02-12-2012, 08:24 PM
Wannabe Guru
 
Aquaticfan's Avatar
 
PTrader: (12/100%)
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: USA
Posts: 1,200
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rostasteve View Post
No root feeders. Temp is 78. pH is 7.2-7.4. kh/gh are 4/10 dH. I might make a trip tomorrow to a store that can test my water (most local places can't).

I'm fine to start dosing with extra ferts, but which ones? Flourish Potassium? Flourish Phospherus? anything else?

I'm using activated carbon (hagen) in my Aquaclear filter. I've been reading that activated carbon may introduce large quantities of phospherus...should I remove it?
You do have root feeders in your tanks. Your swords are both root feeders and need ferts drawn from the substrate you have others that need it as well. So you should be feeding root tabs under those in the substrate.

Instead of worrying about which extra ferts, just do a complete of macro and micro. You can save a ton of money by switching to dry ferts. I've used seachems liquid in the past but for the price and doseage its hard to beat dry. There are other brands of ferts. Anyhow just do both fully and don't try and guess. Any excess of anything won't harm anything and gets diluted with water changes. As well as gets used.

If your using carbon in your filter then your sucking up your ferts and being counter productive. Remove the carbon and keep it out. I don't know any people that use activated carbon in planted tanks personally for that reason.

It would make sense why you have deficency. Not dosing full spectrum needs and what is in there is being sucked up by carbon in the filter.

Sun Sun pimp #72
RAOK CLUB # 68

Conway
Aquaticfan is offline  
Reply

Tags
None

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the The Planted Tank Forum forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in










Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page
Display Modes
Linear Mode Linear Mode



Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome