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Discussion Starter #1
I need you guys to help me pick up a light. But first, let me give you background information.
Its a 20G long tank. From substrate to the lid, its about 11 inches. I am injecting CO2, at the rate of pH drop of 1.1. Its a dirted tank, capped with blasting sand. Initially, I started off with Finnex Ray II but had an accident so on December 28th, I picked up 2 Finnex Planted+ 24/7 CRV lights. On Amazon, it says that it has True 660Nm RED LEDs. For ferts, I use EZ Green from aquarium coop.
At the moment, my tank has one half of the lid. The light in the front, it has to go through the glass lid. But the light in the back, its directly above the water. Thats where all my taller plants are. I have Rotala Blood red, Ludwigia Palustris, Ludwigia Peruensis, Ludwigia Natans, Rotala macrandra.
They are all growing very well. I have to trim them quite often. They are all bushy, and many of them growing laterally instead of vertically. I am happy with their growth. But they are mostly green. If you looked at them, you wouldnt know they are red plants.
So what am I doing wrong? I think I am getting around 60 PAR at the substrate level. But plants that are taller, and closer to the top, they should turn red, isnt it? Ludwigia Natans is nice red but nothing like what you see on google. Rest are just green with barely some touch of red. Am I really to think that 2 of these light is not enough?
So, based on all these information, what do you think is the reason? Wrong light? Wrong ferts? I ordered Thrive+. Should I wait longer since I got the light on 28th?
My CO2 comes on at 11, light at 1. Then CO2 turns off at 8 and light at 9. I added a video to give you an idea.
 

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Seems to me from the video that your reds are coming across a little more brown.... which makes me wonder if it’s just the spectrum of your light.

Not that you’re lacking power, but just that the lights aren’t rendering those intense reds because it’s just the wrong color temp to do so. I’m fairly certain that I have my light turned down at about or below 60 par (although I haven’t measured in a long time) and I don’t have trouble with most red plants. More demanding plants stay orange or pink in my setup though.

If you were to let one of the stems grow all the way to the surface of the water, does the red become more intense at that height?


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I've not dabbled into the intense red of plants before because it always seemed a lot of trouble. I believe its more then just using an all in one fert though. I believe people are rolling their own to get that way and are purposely depriving plants of nitrogen to get that intense red we see in some tanks. /shrug Like I said I haven't dabbled in it much and I think there is more then one way to make it happen but that might be something to research as you try to get this to work.

A question though, as the plants get closer to the surface do the tips turn more red?
 

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You know, I didnt think about rendering red part. That could be it. I am not sure what is the best settings for it. On the remote, there is a button called Max. So I assumed thats the highest output from all colors. Let me find more about it.
No, I have Ammania Gracilis about 2 inches from the light and its not showing much difference at the top compared to the bottom.

Bump: As noob, I want to stay away from Nitrogen starvation if I can as its a little advanced system.
No, I have Ammania Gracilis about 2 inches from the light and its not showing much difference at the top compared to the bottom.
 

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If you try and use less green, yellow and warm white. Then boost your red, blue and/or cool white channels, that may help the red look less brown and more red.

Exact settings are highly dependent on the light, and many lights you can’t even control in the right ways. I have no experience with your light, so I wouldn’t be much help.

Generally speaking I use equal amounts Of red and blue, then about half of that amount in green.... that’s obviously for an RGB only light. Things change when you’re dealing with more channels.

Also, each light has a particular “CRI” color rendering index. It’s my understanding that Some LEDs /lights just don’t have the ability to render certain colors like others do.


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You know, I didnt think about rendering red part. That could be it. I am not sure what is the best settings for it. On the remote, there is a button called Max. So I assumed thats the highest output from all colors. Let me find more about it.
No, I have Ammania Gracilis about 2 inches from the light and its not showing much difference at the top compared to the bottom.

Bump: As noob, I want to stay away from Nitrogen starvation if I can as its a little advanced system.
No, I have Ammania Gracilis about 2 inches from the light and its not showing much difference at the top compared to the bottom.



First thing I'd do ( I def don't chase red) is see what a cutting looks like in real daylight.
Second ignore a lot of the "enhanced" on line photos.
Third buy stock that is known to be very red w/out too much manipulation.
Fourth buy lights that fake colors ie some very colored t5's or RGB leds.
https://buceplant.com/products/ammania-gracilis?variant=34176500237
Ammania gracilis displays wavy leaves that can be blush red to pale green, depending on light and nutrients available.
Ammania gracilis will display beautiful color given the proper conditions. It is recommended to supplement iron and micronutrients for these plants to see best growth and color. They will also exhibit the best color when nitrates are low, but phosphate and micronutrients are high. Ammania gracilis will grow best with CO2 levels around 25-30ppm. Soft and acidic water is preferred, but this plant is hardy and can adapt well to extreme conditions. Without sufficient lighting the plant will become pale green and lose its bottom leaves.

Most of your issue is prob "photo envy" and lack of spectrum trickery.. ;)
 

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First thing I'd do ( I def don't chase red) is see what a cutting looks like in real daylight.
Second ignore a lot of the "enhanced" on line photos.
Third buy stock that is known to be very red w/out too much manipulation.
Fourth buy lights that fake colors ie some very colored t5's or RGB leds.
https://buceplant.com/products/ammania-gracilis?variant=34176500237



Most of your issue is prob "photo envy" and lack of spectrum trickery.. ;)

Jeffkrol is a certified expert, his advice is great and right on with photos and spectrum trickery

I should have thought to mention that if I change my spectrum to really enhance reds, I absolutely hit a point where things start looking so saturated that it’s weird looking, and even weirder looking when I take a photo of it. Like with an old CRT TV that had the hue and saturation knobs all maxed out.....But the reds are bright lol.


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Same plant under 2 different color temps. The warmer color makes the plant look more brown.

This isn’t an RGB light, which in my experience, can create even more drastic differences





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The Finnex planted fixture on full seems to produce light more neutral white to slightly more on the blueside. I get my best colors as my evening lights are starting their ramp down to midnight where they go to just blue at 10%. I have found that if you turn all the channels except red down by 4 clicks (about 40%) and leave the red at 100% you will get the reds to popp quite a bit more. I personally am not working towards getting my reds really red, just aiming for great growth, which I am certainly am getting, so I get a lot of russet colors, and my oriental sword is producing some very intense red / pink leaves out of it when the fixtures get to that time of the day.

Basically I have it setup to produce the most "colorful" at the time I am in the room the most (between 6-midnight). Give that a try and see what pops out of your plants.
 

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have you tried nitrate limitation? like dosing no nitrates at all, rely on plants getting n from substrate.

with respect to rotala growing horizontally, you need to plant each stem very close together for more vertical growth.
 

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have you tried nitrate limitation? like dosing no nitrates at all, rely on plants getting n from substrate.

with respect to rotala growing horizontally, you need to plant each stem very close together for more vertical growth.
Nitrate limitation is a tightrope act. you might have some species of plant that requires a bit more nitrates than the minimum for the Rotala, causing visible deficiency in that other plant.

Rotala species tend to grow horizontal in high light no matter where you plant then.
 
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