Hi all. I have been having algae issues and my tank has been running for a couple months now. Its a 50 gallon, and I have 2 25 watt 36" tubes with a DIY ballast and they are overdriven. Here is my tank journal where you can see pictures and info on the tank.
I'm not sure what this is. Did you try blackouts after you clean? Try a BO of three days (tape up everything, total darkness) and see what happens, followed by 4 days of normal light (10 hours) if not (intirely) succesful, repeat the cycle a few times. This works with 95% of algae.
Melting of leaves: You should start dosing ferts according the estimative index (EI). There's lots of info about this on the net.
If you don't use CO2, start using Flourish Excel. Create good circulation in your tank. Place just the outlet without the spray bar just underwater in the length direction of your tank, but don't break the surface.
Will the blackout for 3 days hurt the plants? I do have excel but have not used it yet. I have been putting regular flourish in there once a week. I will try the excel now. Will that be sufficient or should I still use the EI? I am not really getting any melting of the leaves like I did when they were new. I just have one sword that is dying, but it is in the back and I think the wood may be blocking it from a lot of the light.
A 3 day blackout will not hurt plants, I'm even doing that myself at the moment. Of course they will not grow, but they will be ok. Keep using the regular flourish aswell the excel. The regular flourish is fertilization for your plants, but the excel is source of carbon and kills algae. Put your lights to something like 8 to 10 hours. (not 4).
I have been cleaning the tank twice a week since I posted those pics, and its doing a good job not getting out of hand. The problem is that since I have those plants tied to the wood and some haven't fully rooted yet, each time I rub whatever is growing on the leaves it loosens them a bit and they seem like they are never going to root!
Anyways, I just did a good cleaning now and got most that I could, just a little fuzz on the wood and some of the leaves I may have missed, so I think I will try the blackout. Is 3 days enough? Do I still feed the fish during this blackout time? Thanks.