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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all like the title says my rotala rotundifolia is not growing like everyone claims it does. Its been in the tank for about a month and it hasnt grown at all and it looks very straggly. My anacharis, ludwiga repens, and bacopa carolinia grows so fast that it needs weekly trimming. My tank is 29 gal 2 24w t5 ho 6500k lights with 10 hr photoperiod co2 injection pps pro daily canister filter and koralia power head and ecocomplete substrate. My s. Repens is also not growing at all. I live in nebraska and we have hard water with a ph of 8.
 

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I wonder if you are using enough CO2. A few months ago, my CO2 inadvertently got turned down. I was away on vacation and no one noticed it and when I got home I noticed that my Rotala rotundifolia stopped growing as quickly. I figured out what the problem was and I upped my CO2 and it started growing again. Although in my case, my Ludwigia repens slowed down, as well. I have hard water, too, and my ph without CO2 is around 7.8. Other plants such as anubias, swords, vals and crypts didn't seem to react to the lower level of CO2 the way the rotala and ludwigia did.

Others may have some ideas, too.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I ordered a drop checker off ebay in january and it never showed so i ordered from a U.S. supplier and its on the way. So that should show me where im at. Without co2 my ph is 8.4-8.6. Should i try and up my co2 without knowing where im actually at? I have heard that 1 level drop in ph is usually around 30ppm. If so then i could go a little more and just monitor my fish?
I also leave my co2 on all night
 

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hasnt grown at all and it looks very straggly.
Have you been trimming it? Straggliness is caused by internodes that are too long and not enough side stems. Long internodes occur because the plant is trying to reach light and sacrificing leaf growth for stem growth, which suggests to me the lighting is not strong enough. If rotalia leaves are not red then that's more evidence. To get more side stems just trim the heck out of the plant and replant the stems.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Update-
I got my drop checker in and installed it in my tank and the color was green like it should be but i upped it a little to see if maybe my r. Rotundifolia would like it. So the drop checker is now reading yellow. I have been watching my fish closely and they seem to be doing just fine. No gasping or swimming at the surface of the water. So the question now is how fast should the rotalia grow under my conditions?
 

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I would say the overall look of the plants looks lacking. The setup is ok, co2 seems ok ... Try and increase your dosing of all macros and see how plants react. You have light, CO2 and many nutrient hungry species.

How much are you actually dosing now in ppm ?
 

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As a noob I'm finding plants to be very odd to figure out, especially with so many variables in play. I set my 120g up around the beginning of the year and rotala rotundifolia went in a few weeks after. Inert sand, low light, no ferts since setup, moderate fishload and it is one of the best growing plants I have. Granted I have others that haven't made it or aren't doing as well but just goes to show you never really know what is going to be the limiting factor. Honestly, with my "experience" I can't believe anything is growing at all.
 

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Here is a little update. I upped my macro dosage to twice daily and kept micro at once daily. Co2 is at 40ppm and my plants are going nuts!
That’s great news.
I think you can improve it even more if you lower the light energy, at least one hour less, and cut solution #2 traces to 1/10th of the recommended dose because there are not enough plants yet. If you don’t see transparent or pale new leaves you don’t need more traces. Also, how old is the Eco-Complete substrate?
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
The eco complete substrate is about a year old. Im guessing its probably gettin alittle on the useless side haha. I have my light down to 8hrs for a couple weeks and i have been upping it every other week to try and get my red reuben sword to send a shoot. Im still kind of new to the nutrient side of things so what is solution #2? Is that magnesium sulfate, potassium nitrate, mono potassiun phosphate, potassium sulfate? Or is it micro nutrients? When i increased my macro nutrients my plants actually started to grow and thrive. I did have yellow leaves on my java fern, anubias nana, and my crypts. My rubin leaves have become more red and my ludwiga repens leaves are more pink.
 

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The eco complete substrate is about a year old. Im guessing its probably gettin alittle on the useless side haha.
“Useless” would be the good news so it is no longer altering water column parameters.
I have my light down to 8hrs for a couple weeks and i have been upping it every other week to try and get my red reuben sword to send a shoot.
I think eight hours would be the optimum. Ten is too much.
Im still kind of new to the nutrient side of things so what is solution #2?
Solution #2 is micros, trace elements CSM.
When i increased my macro nutrients my plants actually started to grow and thrive. I did have yellow leaves on my java fern, anubias nana, and my crypts. My rubin leaves have become more red and my ludwiga repens leaves are more pink.
That would indicate too much light energy.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Thanks edward. Would shutting the light off in the middle of the day for 2 hrs be alright or would it confuse the plants? And for the java ferns and anubias should i put them in a different tank with less lighting? Or will they eventually start to thrive in the high light?
 

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Thanks edward. Would shutting the light off in the middle of the day for 2 hrs be alright or would it confuse the plants? And for the java ferns and anubias should i put them in a different tank with less lighting? Or will they eventually start to thrive in the high light?
I don’t know about the lights, haven’t tried it. And the plants I would split and have them in both aquariums.
 
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