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I am so talented I am killing off my Java Fern

1816 Views 11 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  mistergreen
I have a ten gallon with Java Fern, Java Moss, Sagittaria, and a few plastic plants for filler and cover for the shrimp/fish. Substrate is 3:1 Pea Gravel and CaribSea FloraMax. Temp is 78F constant (heater)

Moss is thriving and has already taken over my coconut huts :)

Sagittaria is slowly dying off, short blades are fine - dark green and steady growing, but taller blades are lightning up at ends and going transparent at the edges and working it way in. Roots are in substrate and plant was pulled up so just the very tip of the root ball shows.

Java Fern is growing well. The first one put in a month an a half ago has grown at least two inches taller and constantly sprouting new leaves. However the older leaves are spotted dark brown and turing into holes. I got the plant in this condition and trimmed a lot of it away and it seems like it is only the older leaves this is happening to but I am not entirely sure. A new plant was put in a few weeks ago and it too is growing very quickly. Both plants have leaves that are transparent at the tips, I have read that this is typical of growing leaves and once the growth slows the color fills in? Plants are tied to river rock on top of coconuts, hoping the rhizomes will attach to coconut since I can't attach to the coconut without putting my fish in danger of a nasty clothesline.



Ferts - none (I am so afraid of killing my fish/shrimp 5 juvie/2 adult cherry 1 amano, 6 cpd)

Lighting - started with a hood with 15 watt incandescent, I have taken off the top to bring the CPDs out in the open/feel less threatened (due to too bright of a light). Tank is in a office with 6 florescent tubes directly above tank, and a window to the east end of tank that is uncovered for 3 or 4 hours a day.

Partially unrelated question, I would like to avoid full hood lighting and I see tons of LED clip on options... Most start at only 3 watts. How are LEDs for plants and what wattage do I need to get to at least the minimum threshold for a 10 gallon (obviously much more than 3 watts).
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I have opinions on the plants, but I'll leave those questions to people with more experience.
As to the LED question, the small clip on LED lamps are fine for fish.
The Marineland Double Bright that will fit a 10g tank has nine 1 watt LED emitters. That will grow plants in 12" tall tanks. Bushy ones do better than stems as the stems tend to grow towards individual LEDs. If you're going the DIY way, three 3 watt LED emitters about four to six inches above a 10g lights it nicely. I can't say how the plants grow - yet.
 
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