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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am searching for a good background plant for my 55 gal aquarium. I have micro sward and dwarf hairgrass in the foreground. I am looking for something that is fairly low maintenance and colorful (orange, red, or pink). I have 160 watt's of lighting, dirt, sand, and florite substrate. I was looking at Rotala wallichii but most of what i have read claims it's a difficult plant to care for. Any advise would be great!

TIA
Allen
 

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Thank you. Do you have any pictures you could share? Also is there a reputable source you would recommend for ordering it from?
Just look at my 5.5 gallon tank. I'm kind of curious as to what you are reading that says this is such a difficult plant?

All I've done with it is have it under hi-lighting in a substrate of dirt caped with sand, I started with one bunch, and now my tank is filled with these guys, and they need weekly trimmings and I don't even know what to do with them XD

Once I figure out how to ship plants and all that, I could probably sell you some. Trust me, I'd be generous with the portions as well.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
It does look very nice! How do you trim it? Mostly what i have read aside from the obvious lighting issues are people having them wither away and die after trimming. How much light do you have in your 5.5? Thanks for the help. I don't exactly know how good my lighting is. I got a 2X55 bright kit from AH supply and installed two 40 watt CFLs (4 total). On their site they claim a 2X55 bright kit (one 55 watt per side) would give medium light in a 55 gal. I don't know if stuffing two bulbs in each reflector actually increase the light or not.
 

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Well, I just use a rayII on my 5.5, which puts me in the high light range. You'd have to ask someone else about your lighting system.

As far as trimming, well, tbh, I just cut the top and replant the tops, ideally you could cut the top and remove the older stem, but I'm just kinda lazy, which is why I know have so much. It also throws out side shoots for me fairly regularly.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I had a couple other questions that i figured i would ask here rather than starting another thread. I set the aquarium up and planted it using the light supplied with the hood (18W :hihi:) while my new light's were on order. I started with micro sword, dwarf hairgrass, and Rotala Magenta. It took 10 days to receive the lights and get them operational (9 more than it was supposed to). In that time the Rotala went thermonuclear, patches of the DHG started to turn brown, and some leaves on the MS started to die. I pulled what was left of the Rotala when i got the new lights and hoped for the best. It has been 5 days since the new lights, i am getting some new growth from the MS but the rotting leaves are still attached. The DH is starting to get some green growth in the middle of the brown clumps. My question is should i pull everything and start over? Will the DHG and MS ever fully carpet or will the brown spots always be a dead zone.

I have also been doing 50% water changes once a week. Is this really necessary? There is no livestock in the tank. The tank is cycled (no fish adding ammonia) PH is good, no ammonia, no nitrites, and nitrates are off the chart. I have been adding a cap full of seachem flourish a day and i am injecting co2. Please help me before i slaughter any more plants :confused:


TIA
Allen
 

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I think pulling everything and starting over is a bit of an overreaction right now, especially since you mentioned there's some growth already. Stay the course, and think about picking up some dry ferts and starting a dosing regime.

The 50% water changes aren't absolutely necessary right now since you have no livestock and no major fertilizer dosing that would build up in the tank. You could probably cut that down to maybe ~10-20% if you felt compelled.
 

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For the first time, like ever, I would advise that you don't change water atm. If anything, water changes would cause you to lose nutrients that your plants need.

And I would offload you clippings if I knew how to ship plants. Truth be told as well, its really cold where I am now and I'd be afraid that I wouldn't ship it properly and they would die before they reach you. But one day, when the weather gets better, I can practice my ability to ship plants on you :p.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
What are the advantages of dry ferts over a pre-mixed liquids or root tabs.? I assume when you say dry frets you are speaking of buying the raw ingredients and adding varying amounts.Thank you for the reply.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
For the first time, like ever, I would advise that you don't change water atm. If anything, water changes would cause you to lose nutrients that your plants need.

And I would offload you clippings if I knew how to ship plants. Truth be told as well, its really cold where I am now and I'd be afraid that I wouldn't ship it properly and they would die before they reach you. But one day, when the weather gets better, I can practice my ability to ship plants on you :p.
Thank you! Waiting for the weather to warm up will give me time to get a better grasp on things.
 

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Thank you! Waiting for the weather to warm up will give me time to get a better grasp on things.
Dw, I'm still relatively new to being super serious about plants. I feel this is a hobby where the more you learn, the more you realize you know nothing XP. Feel free to grab any wallichi you can btw, just to try it out. I sometimes do that if I see a plant I want, I'll buy a little of it locally and then just fill it in or replace it with the same thing bought from a hobbyist.

I'm still curious as to what terrible things you've heard about wallichi?
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
More questions. Algae this time :mad:. I am starting to get a little bit of an algae outbreak and wanted to nip it in the butt. I have had a little bit of what i believe is a hair algae issue on from of the slower growing micro sword leaves (the ones that were damaged from too little light, not dead leaves just slow growing ones. All new growth is algae free). I figured since it was not effecting the new growth i would let it run it's course. Last night i upgraded my CO2 injection and increased flow inside the aguarium with a powerhead. I noticed on one of the rocks there was the slightest bit of algae, when i woke up this morning there was a much larger area of algae on the rock and the sand in my aquarium had started sprouting patches. As fast as this stuff developed i figured i should fix it quick. The only changes i have made recently are a shorter photoperiod (8 vs 12) and increasing CO2. Ammonia-0PPM, pH-7.0, nitrite 0-PPM, nitrate 160+ppm. I am due for a water change tomorrow (bi-weekly) and wanted to know what i could do to kill it while i am in there. Here are a couple pictures. Thanks in advance.




 
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