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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello,

I'm getting the BBA under control, but I was wondering if I spot treated Vals with Excel, will they melt? Also, it grows on my substrate gravel, I'm wondering if I should spot treat the areas of that as well, or vaccum and add some new gravel, or both?

I know that this subject has been discussed extensively on here, but I've been unable to find answers to those two specific questions.

Thanks for any advice,
D
 

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Moved this to the Algae section because it's about algae.

I found 497 threads about Vals and Excel. If you search "vals and excel", you'll get your answer. Literally in the second search result. You'll find that some Vals will melt if you overdo it. Some will melt if you use a small amount. Some won't melt at all.

Nearly as many results for "bba excel spot treating" - so check that out, as well. But people have used both Excel and peroxide (separately) for spot-treating.

Vacuuming substrate in a planted tank is usually unnecessary and isn't going to help you stop your algae issues. In order to do that, you'll want to get to the bottom of why you have the problem in the first place. What's your fertilization regimen? What kind of lighting do you have? How far is it from the substrate? How long is your photoperiod? Do you use CO2? What's your water change regimen? Flow? Surface agitation?

Could you post a photo of your tank?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks. I must be blind if the answers were so obvious. To answer:
*Fertilization is recommended dose for 36 gal of Thrive 3 times a week. Dose with Excel other days.
*Not sure of the specs on the light. It's a full spectrum LED and I placed some window film over the glass to help a little with the light, but the light sits on the tank lid and I've considered trying to find some kind of elevator for it.
*Photo period is 10 hours
*No CO2
* Water change weekly
*HOB filteration and I have a wave maker

I'm sorry that I started thread number 498. I'm not on forums a lot and don't always have the best etiquette I guess, although throw me in an arena with cattle and horses, and a rope, and I know what I'm doing. :)

Thanks for taking the time.
Denise
 

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Hello,

I'm getting the BBA under control, but I was wondering if I spot treated Vals with Excel, will they melt? Also, it grows on my substrate gravel, I'm wondering if I should spot treat the areas of that as well, or vaccum and add some new gravel, or both?

I know that this subject has been discussed extensively on here, but I've been unable to find answers to those two specific questions.

Thanks for any advice,
D
I used Excel to help get some BBA under control during the first few months of my 75g tank. It worked well for spot treating but when added to the tank water tended to melt my Corkscrew Val. I eventually pulled out all of the Val. It grows very fast by runners and so I got tired of it's invasive tendencies. It is like planting bamboo in your yard. Don't turn your back on it!

If you can use a rope I am sure you can wrangle some BBA...
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I used Excel to help get some BBA under control during the first few months of my 75g tank. It worked well for spot treating but when added to the tank water tended to melt my Corkscrew Val. I eventually pulled out all of the Val. It grows very fast by runners and so I got tired of it's invasive tendencies. It is like planting bamboo in your yard. Don't turn your back on it!
My Vals are the only plants that have BBA on their leaves, I've managed to trim all of the others. I've thought about getting rid of the Vals. They're not really growing as fast as it sounds like your Corkscrew Vals are. Actually, they're not growing fast at all...
 

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My Vals are the only plants that have BBA on their leaves, I've managed to trim all of the others. I've thought about getting rid of the Vals. They're not really growing as fast as it sounds like your Corkscrew Vals are. Actually, they're not growing fast at all...
I hate to say it but CO2 really makes things easier for our tanks. One of the ways that I got the BBA to subside was to turn up my CO2 a bit.

Edit: sentence with external link removed.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I hate to say it but CO2 really makes things easier for our tanks. One of the ways that I got the BBA to subside was to turn up my CO2 a bit. Here is a good article on BBA.
Thank you! I didn't have BBA for years and years with this tank. I read online yesterday and a guy said that it has to be introduced into your tank by some means, either wood or plants? He said it just doesn't appear. What a pain in the rear end it is. I'm reading the article that you sent the link to, and it actually says low tech tanks are less vulnerable to it. I also have a nice, balanced population of MTS which I was assuming was helping with the detrius on the bottom since I rarely vacuum the substrate.
 

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There are certain plants that are very sensitive to BBA Vals
Thank you! I didn't have BBA for years and years with this tank. I read online yesterday and the guy said that it has to be introduced into your tank by some means, either wood or plants?
That is total wrong. BBA will develop when conditions favor it. Algae spores are everywhere. You can't keep them out of your tank. So if your having BBA you need to (as mentioned) adjust lighting, reduce organics by increasing water changes, reduce feeding/stocking, remove dying leaves more often, clean filter, take your pick, doing all is the best. If it's not realistic to do that then choose another plant. Some plants are more sensitive to developing BBA then others.

By the way, I've moved algae infected plants,rocks, etc into my main tank and it just dies off, it doesn't spread. It needs certain conditions to live just like anything else.
 

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Thank you! I didn't have BBA for years and years with this tank. I read online yesterday and the guy said that it has to be introduced into your tank by some means, either wood or plants? He said it just doesn't appear. What a pain in the rearend it is. I've considered CO2 in the past. I'll do some more research on it.
There are certain plants that are very sensitive to BBA Vals


That is total wrong. BBA will develop when conditions favor it. Algae spores are everywhere. You can't keep them out of your tank. So if your having BBA you need to (as mentioned) adjust lighting, reduce organics by increasing water changes, reduce feeding/stocking, remove dying leaves more often, clean filter, take your pick, doing all is the best. If it's not realistic to do that then choose another plant. Some plants are more sensitive to developing BBA then others. Oh wait! I lied about the stocking, I just bought a couple of GNRs yesterday, and 5 small tetras.

By the way, I've moved algae infected plants,rocks, etc into my main tank and it just dies off, it doesn't spread. It needs certain conditions to live just like anything else.
Thank you. I am doing everything that you have suggested. Religiously. Right now there isn't much to be found in my tank, other than a spot on my heater dial and on my HOB filters housing. Oh, and the Vals. The have more of a dusting on their leaves than then actual brush-like formations on the edges. I wonder if I should pull them out...?
 

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Thank you. I am doing everything that you have suggested. Religiously. Right now there isn't much to be found in my tank, other than a spot on my heater dial and on my HOB filters housing. Oh, and the Vals. The have more of a dusting on their leaves than then actual brush-like formations on the edges. I wonder if I should pull them out...?
Sounds like things aren't too bad. It's really a personal choice. Having 10 hrs of lighting is tough, especially without co2. As mentioned co2 helps alot. Co2 increases plant growth which makes it hard for algae to get a hold. You'll usually see algae develop on slow growing plants and hardscape. Putting carbon in the filter can also reduce organic buildup.

Spot dosing to me is kind of a waste as it's not going to help grow healthy new leaves and the leaves with BBA are already damaged. If your setup doesn't allow you to grow healthy new leaves then you need to find a new plant or change something.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Sounds like things aren't too bad. It's really a personal choice. Having 10 hrs of lighting is tough, especially without co2. As mentioned co2 helps alot. Co2 increases plant growth which makes it hard for algae to get a hold. You'll usually see algae develop on slow growing plants and hardscape. Putting carbon in the filter can also reduce organic buildup.

Spot dosing to me is kind of a waste as it's not going to help grow healthy new leaves and the leaves with BBA are already damaged. If your setup doesn't allow you to grow healthy new leaves then you need to find a new plant or change something.
No, it's not as awfu. I clean my tank regularly and try to clean it off anyplace that I see it. What a pain though...
 

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No, it's not as awfu. I clean my tank regularly and try to clean it off anyplace that I see it. What a pain though...
Yeah, it really comes down to a lifestyle choice. Believe me, you could ask very advanced aquatic plant hobbyists and they'll tell you how important maintenance is. It doesn't just happen, actually it can just happen but plant choices, lighting etc become extremely limited.
 

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Yeah, it really comes down to a lifestyle choice. Believe me, you could ask very advanced aquatic plant hobbyists and they'll tell you how important maintenance is. It doesn't just happen, actually it can just happen but plant choices, lighting etc become extremely limited.
Well, that's good to know because I'm pretty diligent about tank maintenance. I had a minor algae bloom about 6 months ago because I overcleaned my fliter media. Now, I'm careful to just clean it in the tank water I removed during a water change and I use polyfill for polishing the water. I need to remove my HOB filter and clean the outside really well. Do you think that adding some new substrate gravel would help with the little bit that is growing on the substrate? I guess I'd just be covering it up though, not really killing it. I've been picking out individual rocks that have it on them.
 

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Well, that's good to know because I'm pretty diligent about tank maintenance. I had a minor algae bloom about 6 months ago because I overcleaned my fliter media. Now, I'm careful to just clean it in the tank water I removed during a water change and I use polyfill for polishing the water. I need to remove my HOB filter and clean the outside really well. Do you think that adding some new substrate gravel would help with the little bit that is growing on the substrate? I guess I'd just be covering it up though, not really killing it. I've been picking out individual rocks that have it on them.
Normally you don't gravel wash planted, but here I would use some filter tubing or tubing wide enough and suction the affected gravel out, clean it and put it back in. Turn off your filter before doing it. Do a big water change right after you remove it to suction out anything left behind.
 

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Hello,

I'm getting the BBA under control, but I was wondering if I spot treated Vals with Excel, will they melt? Also, it grows on my substrate gravel, I'm wondering if I should spot treat the areas of that as well, or vaccum and add some new gravel, or both?

I know that this subject has been discussed extensively on here, but I've been unable to find answers to those two specific questions.

Thanks for any advice,
D
Hi Dreamroper. I actually don't waste Excel on BBA. For years, I've spot treated with 3% hydrogen peroxide. I turn off the filters, limit my spot dosing to 1 mg per gallon (at times I've exceeded that), and watch the BBA fizzle and burn up for about a 1/2 hour before turning the filters back on. By this time, it's turned into oxygen and water, so no harm done to beneficial bacteria in my filter. A shallow vacuum afterwards makes everything looking nice again. Also works great for spot treating Blue Green Algae. I've never kept vals in my lush 29 gal low tech tank, so not sure how peroxide might/might not affect them. Stem plants, Angelfish, tetras, rasboras and loaches never harmed by peroxide treatment.
 

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Does your bba grow mostly on the ends of the val, up near the light? You can trim it with scissors! That's generally what I do - just lift the leaves up and anything that sticks out of the water I trim back.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Hi Dreamroper. I actually don't waste Excel on BBA. For years, I've spot treated with 3% hydrogen peroxide. I turn off the filters, limit my spot dosing to 1 mg per gallon (at times I've exceeded that), and watch the BBA fizzle and burn up for about a 1/2 hour before turning the filters back on. By this time, it's turned into oxygen and water, so no harm done to beneficial bacteria in my filter. A shallow vacuum afterwards makes everything looking nice again. Also works great for spot treating Blue Green Algae. I've never kept vals in my lush 29 gal low tech tank, so not sure how peroxide might/might not affect them. Stem plants, Angelfish, tetras, rasboras and loaches never harmed by peroxide treatment.
Thanks Joe. I will buy some today. I'm waiting for some plastic syringes to come in the mail, and then I'll spot treat. I've got it on the run, but you know how one little area and it comes back..

Does your bba grow mostly on the ends of the val, up near the light? You can trim it with scissors! That's generally what I do - just lift the leaves up and anything that sticks out of the water I trim back.
It grows on the edges, but I've trimmed where I can. Thanks!
 
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