Originally Posted by fighttest
I noticed today that my Amazon sword and umbrella plant look as if they are becoming see through. Iv got 2 48" 40watt life glo bulbs and have eco complete gravel, which should be holding a good amount of fish poo. I have seachem flourish but havenít been dosing regularly. When I did notice today when I was doing my pwc I adding a capfull of flourish. Any suggestions as to making them regain their natural colors would be greatly appreciated.
Also an update on my algae problem that some may know from other posts. my lighting schedule is 6:15 am to 12:00pm, off for an hour then back on from 1:00 pm to 7:15pm. This one-hour split has helped reduce the level of algae in my aquarium considerably. I had also been away from the tank for a week so when I came back I had some really bad green water, which is normal for me if I leave the tank for a few days. I have been doing water changes every 4 days or so and I will be going back to this routine since im back at my dads house for 2-3 weeks.
Easy to answer, you need to add liquid fertilizer once or probably twice a week, every week. I know exactly what is happening; your plants have the light (good light in my opinion) but insufficient nutrients to match.
Fish cannot provide all the necessary macro- and micro-nutrients, and these are not complete in tap water either. Liquid fertilizer that is balanced with all the required nutrients is the easiest way to solve the problem. Seachem's "Flourish Comprehensive Supplement for the Planted Aquarium" is the overall best choice. Make sure it is the Comprehensive; it contains all the nutrients and in the correct balance.
In my aquaria I have twice experimented by going to once a week with Flourish; both times the swords started developing yellowing and "clear" leaves, so I went back to twice a week and they improved. The yellowing/clear leaves will die off, but the new growth will be healthy once you start with Flourish Comprehensive once a week. You may eventually need to go to twice a week, but given the algae/gree water problem I suggest once. The thing is balance, and once you find it, all will be well.
A note on the algae, your light schedule is good as you can see for reducing algae. But there is obviously still something or green water wouldn't occur every few days. This is causd by excess of nutrients and light, more than the plants can use in balance with the CO2 from the fish. But the nutrients are not themselves balanced, otherwise the leaf trouble wouldn't occur. So you need to get everything in balance. I suggest reducing the mid-day no-light period by one more hour to two hours. Do a 50% partial water change and then do a 30-40% pwc every week, vacuuming the substrate each time and adding the recomended dose of Flourish Comprehensive immediatly after the pwc. Also check your filter media, it may need rinsing; depending upon the amount of mulm and detrius that accumulates on the pads, they may need rinsing every month; water must be able to flow through the pad easily, and the stuff that builds up is only going to decompose adding more of the unwanted organics to the water column, feeding the algae.
The whole thing is balance. Once you find it, you will not have algae/green water problems and the plants will thrive.