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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey guys. I have been letting my plants grow wild in a "proposed" dutch tank. Everything went batsh** crazy a while back with presumably 'micronutrient toxicity', BBA, String algae, and more. I have since got it under control but I'm still stumped on ludwigia natans super red. I dose full (presumably 1.25x) EI, 3x a week for both macros and micros split with 6mL flourish iron daily (Water of about 7.8-7.9pH, iron deficiency is heavily visible in stargrass and it literally goes full white if I don't dose iron daily)

Here is the tank:

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Here is the super red (in the back left)

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I've always been keen on figuring tank problems out myself but i'm losing my mind and need consultation from someone who may know more about this problem than me. Does anyone know what can be causing this? Too much traces? Too little traces? Potassium deficiency? Going crazy, help!!
 

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Are you talking about color? Leaf shape? Both? Lol!

Not sure if this will help but with my mini reds, they need high light and good, stable co2. Stable both throughout the day and over the course of many days/weeks. And not saying that you don't as I see a drip checker lower right. My guess is more light related?

Here's my co2 tank (pH from 7.2 to 5.9 daily, 6dGh). They don't start to show their color until they hit 3 inches from the surface. They are within ~2 inches from surface in this pic.



Here they are in a non co2 lower light tank (pH 6.8, 6dGh). These were cuttings from my co2 tank a little over a month ago. Or is that 2 months now? I've trimmed them once, lol.



Lastly what are your nitrates?

I have been slowly reducing my nitrates over the course of 4-5 months now and am finally below 10ppm. It's ever so subtle and more than likely subjective but my mini reds seem redder now then before. :)

Sent from my Pixel 3 XL using Tapatalk
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Are you talking about color? Leaf shape? Both? Lol!

Not sure if this will help but with my mini reds, they need high light and good, stable co2. Stable both throughout the day and over the course of many days/weeks. And not saying that you don't as I see a drip checker lower right. My guess is more light related?

Here's my co2 tank (pH from 7.2 to 5.9 daily, 6dGh). They don't start to show their color until they hit 3 inches from the surface. They are within ~2 inches from surface in this pic.



Here they are in a non co2 lower light tank (pH 6.8, 6dGh). These were cuttings from my co2 tank a little over a month ago. Or is that 2 months now? I've trimmed them once, lol.



Lastly what are your nitrates?

I have been slowly reducing my nitrates over the course of 4-5 months now and am finally below 10ppm. It's ever so subtle and more than likely subjective but my mini reds seem redder now then before. :)

Sent from my Pixel 3 XL using Tapatalk
Hey thanks for replying! I'm talking about the necrosis in the newer leaves, the plant is stunted and the baby leaves coming out from the tip look very deformed. My drop checker is green at lights on, yellow/lime green at the end. I don't really mind for color at the moment as much as good growth, so my nitrates are 30>ppm. I think I may have figured it out though. I use ferrous gluconate for iron, but underestimates how fast it precipitates in my tank because of hard water. I have also been dosing high amounts of Mg despite a 1:3 tap water Mg:Ca ratio, so I stopped that. Hoping to see a difference the next few weeks!
 

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Yeah I saw that you were using gluconate. I was under the impression that gluconate didn't care much about pH? As you can see, though I don't have much experience with higher pH freshwater tanks, lol.

Also will be very curious if the Mg has anything to do with it!

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WC, gravel vac, clean filter, trim and reduce crowdeness, adjust flow and Co2....ya know how it goes.

Then top unhealthy stunted stems. See how new shoots grow out.
Does the problem persist? or does it disappear?

And while doing so try reducing micros. Keep routine the same but reduce the amounts by half.
I think P. helferi turning white is due to gluconate un-chelating too quickly. If there is no precipitation then over EI level traces for a week will last years for most plants. So it should hopefully stay green.

Usually for me those abrupt tip stunting comes from traces and/or CO2.
Barr would disagree and I cannot argue to his plants but..I just cannot grow some plants with high traces.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
WC, gravel vac, clean filter, trim and reduce crowdeness, adjust flow and Co2....ya know how it goes.

Then top unhealthy stunted stems. See how new shoots grow out.
Does the problem persist? or does it disappear?

And while doing so try reducing micros. Keep routine the same but reduce the amounts by half.
I think P. helferi turning white is due to gluconate un-chelating too quickly. If there is no precipitation then over EI level traces for a week will last years for most plants. So it should hopefully stay green.

Usually for me those abrupt tip stunting comes from traces and/or CO2.
Barr would disagree and I cannot argue to his plants but..I just cannot grow some plants with high traces.
Thank you for the P. Helferi advice. I'm considering switching over to 11% DTPA and save myself the pain of precipitating ferrous gluconate in this hardwater tank. However, things are looking very good as of right now. The stargrass' growth is usually pure white, but with daily dosing of ferrous, it's become a light, healthy green stargrass should be, and the P. helferi is starting to look good.

Funny enough, I had just posted about overdosing traces at reddit's r/plantedtank.

I noticed that after water changes, the plants would look lively and healthy and continue growth from individual nodes (most notably the plant I struggle with above; Natans Super Red). I know that overdosing NPK is unlikely to cause problems, so I shifted my focus to the trace mix I was dosing.

Now, I definitely agree that there is controversy behind this, and that Clive from UKAPS and like you said, Tom Barr, disagrees with this, but it seems to be micro-toxicity. I put a sh*t ton of Osmocote upon set up of the tank, and I mean a TON. About 110 tabs. Looking at the Guaranteed Analysis for Plantex CSM+B and Osmocote+, some trace elements have the same %, and considering I put so many tabs in my aquarium, I could be dosing more than 4 times the EI amount of traces. I put a stop on my trace dosing as of today, and I plan to increase trace dosing very slowly, jumping up a bit whenever some deficiency like Boron comes up, but I doubt that'll be for a long time.
 

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Thank you for the P. Helferi advice. I'm considering switching over to 11% DTPA and save myself the pain of precipitating ferrous gluconate in this hardwater tank. However, things are looking very good as of right now. The stargrass' growth is usually pure white, but with daily dosing of ferrous, it's become a light, healthy green stargrass should be, and the P. helferi is starting to look good.

Funny enough, I had just posted about overdosing traces at reddit's r/plantedtank.

I noticed that after water changes, the plants would look lively and healthy and continue growth from individual nodes (most notably the plant I struggle with above; Natans Super Red). I know that overdosing NPK is unlikely to cause problems, so I shifted my focus to the trace mix I was dosing.

Now, I definitely agree that there is controversy behind this, and that Clive from UKAPS and like you said, Tom Barr, disagrees with this, but it seems to be micro-toxicity. I put a sh*t ton of Osmocote upon set up of the tank, and I mean a TON. About 110 tabs. Looking at the Guaranteed Analysis for Plantex CSM+B and Osmocote+, some trace elements have the same %, and considering I put so many tabs in my aquarium, I could be dosing more than 4 times the EI amount of traces. I put a stop on my trace dosing as of today, and I plan to increase trace dosing very slowly, jumping up a bit whenever some deficiency like Boron comes up, but I doubt that'll be for a long time.

Ya that was my experience overall...and I believe Burr740 and some other people had similar experience.
He transitioned into unchelated custom trace mix from CSM+B...and was able to dose 10~20x amount traces with better results.

So is it heavy metal toxicity? Inconclusive I'd say..but there seems to be something about how chelators behave in a tank.
For some reason, in some conditions plants can handle fk ton of traces while in other conditions plants cannot handle even the slightest bit.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Ya that was my experience overall...and I believe Burr740 and some other people had similar experience.
He transitioned into unchelated custom trace mix from CSM+B...and was able to dose 10~20x amount traces with better results.

So is it heavy metal toxicity? Inconclusive I'd say..but there seems to be something about how chelators behave in a tank.
For some reason, in some conditions plants can handle fk ton of traces while in other conditions plants cannot handle even the slightest bit.
Have only heard people talking about metal toxicity and not much about the chelators.. Interesting. That's a topic I'm gonna look up on.

Day three and the plants (especially the natans) are doing better. Noticeable growth on my ar roseafolias and the stunted top leaves of the natans actually seem to be growing. They've doubled in size overnight.

Definitely cannot wait to see where this takes me. Seems to be promising. Thanks again for your help!
 
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