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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I planted several jungle vals and dwarf sag three weeks ago and I am not seeing any new growth. The vals are getting taller but do not look great and hair algae is starting to grow on them. they are not growing at all. The sag doesn't look great either and I am seeing no growth at all with them. I feel like I'm doing everything right, so it's very frustrating. I am injecting CO2, high lighting, Amazonia II substrate, Niloc G liquid ferts twice per week per the instructions, and weekly 25% water changes. Good aeration and water flow. Nitrates are around 30 to 40ppm, 0ppm phosphate last I checked, and TDS is in the high 300s. I'm using a Finnex 24/7 light on 24/7 mode and recently reprogrammed it for around 8 hours of high light. My dwarf hairgrass is spreading and my alternanthera reineckii is showing new growth, so I'm confused. CO2 is on two hours before lights on and one hour before lights off. Carbonate hardness is 3 and general hardness is 8. PH is 7. My TDS seems high (upper 300s). Could this be my issue? I read it should ideally be more around 120, but I wouldn't be able to go that low without using RO, which I'm not equipped to do at this point.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Just did a 20% water change and my TDS is actually 225 now, and I just dosed ferts.
 

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Waterbox Frag 105.4 High Tech
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0 phosphate is actually bad. plants need phosphate

FWIW AR has always been crap for me. I cannot grow it. it looks all messed up like yours while other plants do great around it. I have a hunch that this species is very particular about some water condition that I simply cannot satisfy...

have you considered that you have dosed too much? maybe try some large water changes to "reset" and try something new?

I recently realized I had been dosing too much (particularly K). I noticed some pinholes (symptom of K deficiency) and started dosing more K. kept seeing pinholes so I dosed more K. soon I had growth come to a halt, leaves drop, ugly new growth, etc. It was bad and I lost almost all my plant mass in a few species. I did some huge water changes and hit the reset button, dosed more carefully (far less), etc and my tank bounced back immediately
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I increased the CO2, light, and nutrients for the past week and a half and the AR and Val's are looking pretty good actually. My dwarf hairgrass is showing lots of new growth too. I'm still having issues with hair algae all over the Val's though. And my dwarf sag does not seem to be growing. I put some root tabs around them today, so we'll see if that helps. I plan on getting a few ottos or more Amanos to help with the algae.
 

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The AR in my 1.5 month old tank looks pretty similar to this. Went through some growing pains with algae, but they are showing new growth now. 2hr aquarist notes that AR does not like to be uprooted much. I added some otos and amanos last week. The otos mainly stay on the glass or hardwood, but I occasionally see them on my ludwigia. The amanos are all over the AR, so I think I'm gonna get more of them rather than more cats.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I'm going to get some more amanos tomorrow because i have also noticed them taking a liking to the AR. I never seem to have a problem growing AR. It's the "easy/beginner " plants that don't do well in my tanks for some reason 🤷
 
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