The mystery of my plants - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old 04-02-2014, 12:12 PM Thread Starter
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The mystery of my plants

I've been a planted tank for a month now, tank setup for 5 months. Quick stats:

36G Community with Neons, Corys, 1 Bristlenose Pleco, Zebra Danios, Guppies, Snails, Frogs
Filter: Penn Plax Cascade 700
Plus Koralia nano 240
AquaticLife (2) T5HO bulbs @ 24 watts each, one of them Rosette, both 20" from the substrate
Light is on 10 hours a day
Pressurized CO2, drop checker is lime green, almost yellow after 10 hours

Plants: Marsilea Hirsuta for ground cover, 3 Anubia Nana, Ludwiga Glandulosa, Bacopa Carolina, Nesaea Golden, Weeping Moss, floating Amazon Frogbit

Dosing: EI using Mono Potassium Phosphate (1/16 teaspoon 3x week), Potassium Nitrate (1/4 teaspoon 3x week), Potassium Sulfate (1/16 teaspoon 3x week), Flourish Comprehensive (5mL 3x week on alternate days from Macros), 50% water changes every week

Bacopa Carolina very slow growth, after 4 weeks, only 4-5 inches tall
Nesaea Golden very slow growth, new leaves look wilted
Ludwiga Gladulosa very slow growth, roots coming out of stems, new leaves coming in green
Anubias: 2 of the 3 are flowing, some white spots on 1 leaf (see attached)
Weeping Moss: slight browning
Floating Amazon Frogbit: growing like crazy

Yesterday's Test Results:
I know these are off, but I don't think they show any deficiencies?
Ammonia = 0
Nitrite = 0
Nitrate = 50 (too high for fish, does this cause wilting?)
pH = 6.4
GH = 8
KH = 5
Phosphates = 15

I know my Nitrates & Phosphates are too high (especially the Nitrates for the fish), but can that cause what you're seeing in these pictures? At this time, I don't use GH Booster (I've always had GH 5-8, do I need GH Booster?). I also don't dose extra Iron or Magnesium, etc., not sure if I need to.

I have seen very very little growth, height wise, in the last 4 weeks, and new leaves of the Golden Nesaea are looking shriveled and appear to be wilting.

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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old 04-02-2014, 02:14 PM
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I would try either bringing the light intensity down or shortening the photo period. I am not sure what is going on with your plants. Hard to tell from one photo in a 5 month span. It could just be an adjustment on the plant's part. I have some bacopa that had a similar thing go on. It grew all stunted and small for a bit but then got better. It has like a section of its stock with small leaves now and the rest is normal. You're nitrates are super high, but if the plants have a lot of light and CO2 they should theoretically eat it up. Although you are adding it as well as have it building up in the tank?

The Anubius flowering seems to be a good sign but I have seen them do that when in duress as well. I guess it's a "last gasp" kind of tactic. So again, not sure.

You could be having a nutrient burn but I have only seen that in person with terrestrial plants so I am not certain what it looks like in aquatic plants.

Actually, I am going to amend what I said earlier. I would leave the lights alone and see what happens when the nitrates go down. Don't add any for a week.
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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old 04-02-2014, 02:35 PM
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Will you give the size in inches of this tank ?

The shortest distance between any two points is a straight the opposite direction...
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post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old 04-02-2014, 03:00 PM Thread Starter
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36G Bowfront, 30" wide, 16" tall, 11" deep (with 15" deep in the middle)

There is a glass lid between the aquarium and the light
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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old 04-02-2014, 11:57 PM Thread Starter
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I'm doing the math...I dose 1/16 teaspoon of K2HPO4 3x a week, which in my 36G tank is 1.3PPM each time. I haven't missed my weekly 50% water change. I've been a planted tank for a month. In order to get 15 PPM phosphate, I would have had to dose 1/16 teaspoons every day for a month with 50% water changes weekly, and have 0% plant uptake.

Well I didn't dose everyday, but I'm guessing my plants have 0% uptake? Which means they need more light?

Wouldn't this explain also why my nitrates are so high? (Before planted tank, I had the same fish, same food feeding, Nitrates never got higher than 5 PPM).

Oh, and I tested Phosphates multiple times to ensure an accurate test (API Liquid)
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