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Hi everyone,
First time here so I'm really sorry if something is wrong, just let me know. I tried adding a picture, hopefully that works.

I just started a new aquarium and this is my first time with live plants at all. I started off with a bunch of java fern, a small anubias, an amazon sword, and some random Petco bulbs.

Well two of the bulbs are doing great and after some searching I'm pretty sure one of them is an aponogeton ulvaceus. It's my favorite of the plants I have with the big, translucent spiral leaves! But, over the weekend about half of it has developed a bunch of brown spots and holes.

The tank and plants have been up for about a month, except the sword was added a couple of weeks later when I added fish. It is currently home to a betta and 4 otocinclus. I cycled it with the plants in there except the sword. Initially I had a few small plants from a tissue culture that died right away but when I planted them I also used a root tab. That was on the opposite side of the tank from the bulbs and sword though.

My husband did a DIY light for me from an LED light strip that's about 2100 lumens (he thinks). It's basically zig zagged back and forth on the underside of the lid that came with the tank and sandwiched with acrylic over it to keep it from getting too moist. We have it programmed to be on around 14 hours a day, but it fades on and off slowly for the first and last hour or so.

Does anyone have any advice? Parameters are 0 ammonia, 0 nitrite, 10-20 nitrate, and I got the API hardness test kit but I'm not exactly sure how to interpret the results. The GH test turned color right away, so 0-1 drop for that one, and the KH took 17 drops to change color.
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How long has the plant been active? You do know that these will go into hibernation every 2 to 4 months. You don't have to remove the bulbs but they will stay dormant for a few months and when you forget all about them send up new leaves.
 

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How long has the plant been active? You do know that these will go into hibernation every 2 to 4 months. You don't have to remove the bulbs but they will stay dormant for a few months and when you forget all about them send up new leaves.
They don't necessarily hibernate. I've had an aponongeton crispus active for 10 years... But I have also had crispus and ulvaceus that have hibernated for a couple months, but the leaves didn't look like that first- they just kinda fell off. Fully agree it's always a surprise after they go dormant to see those first few leaves 😁👍
 

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My crispus has never hibernated in 3 years but all my ulvaceus have frequently gone into hibernation. The problem is that there are a lot of hybrid out there. I'm told one indication you have a hybrid is if the ulvaceus produces a purple flower instead of a white flower but don't know if that is true.

They don't necessarily hibernate. I've had an aponongeton crispus active for 10 years... But I have also had crispus and ulvaceus that have hibernated for a couple months, but the leaves didn't look like that first- they just kinda fell off. Fully agree it's always a surprise after they go dormant to see those first few leaves 😁👍
 

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My crispus has never hibernated in 3 years but all my ulvaceus have frequently gone into hibernation. The problem is that there are a lot of hybrid out there. I'm told one indication you have a hybrid is if the ulvaceus produces a purple flower instead of a white flower but don't know if that is true.
Interesting... All my ulvaceus have been hybrids if that is true. I definitely wouldn't be surprised.
 

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It's a low tech tank? no C02 added? Someone once explained to me that light is like the gas pedal for plants- it drives them to grow, and if there's not enough nutrients to match that growth rate, the plants will suffer . . . If you're not adding ferts aside from the occasional root tab, I would try cutting back your light period. 14 hours seems like a lot to me. I usually start my tanks at 6 or 7 hours, increase at most to 8. Does your anubias have algae? that might indicate too much light for the situation, also.
 
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