1. Tank size
2. Watts and type of lighting
Life-Glo 20W 6700k (on for about 11 hours, off for 13)
3. Number and types of plants
I couldn't tell you the names if you paid me... There's about 5 plants in there right now.
4. Substrate type
Regular aquarium gravel
5. Age of tank
Hard to say. I had all these rocks in an old aquarium for some years, and I recently moved to this 25L, but I also did a big clean to move the aquarium. It's been in it's new aquarium with all the plants and everything for a solid 4 months.
I'm at my wits end with live plants and I'm about to rip up all the remaining ones and go back to fake ones. I'm really sorry this is so long.
I have no problems with any short plant (anubias, amazon sword) but I can not keep any tall plants alive. My only two non-small plants (but not tall) are a bushy, long leaved one, and one that looks like tiny lily pads on stems, and they don't give me issues.
Any other tall plant I've put in my aquarium tends to lose all it's leaves from the gravel up, until it reaches about half way. Then the stem starts turning black and then the rest of the plant dies off.
Could anyone give me any tips on how to make them survive? I'm picking leaves daily and cleaning my gravel almost once a week and now I'm getting tiny pests in my tank (that I know are from rotting leaves because I am not over feeding. Any left over food within 2 minutes is taken out with a turkey baster, and my frogs are fed the food directly from tube to mouth just twice a week.)
I am adding liquid called 'Flourish' once a week and it doesn't seem to help at all.
I've thought about maybe planting each stem further apart from the others, because I think the plant is shading itself or something? I've done that right now for my remaining tall plant that's not quite to the rotting stage yet in hopes of saving it. It looks horrible though and I'm hoping that's not what I'll have to do with any (if any...) future plants.
I also have a question regarding the algae issue.
I'm constantly dealing with algae (even with 5/6 oto fish. I had 6 but I'm missing a tiny one which I've looked everywhere for and I think it was probably eaten by a frog. :/) so I know my light is enough for the plants. But I'm constantly rubbing algae off plants/roots and I'm wondering if I'm doing something wrong with that as well. I'm not expecting a sparkling tank, but any plant that had dangling roots (like the amazon sword, it has a tall piece floating above it) are COVERED with algae. My one bushy plant is always covered in algae and I keep rubbing globs of it off as many leaves as I can. How can I prevent this?
I'm no plant artist so even when all the plants are alive it doesn't look nearly as good as everyone's I see here. But when the plants are dying and there's leaves everywhere it's a real eye sore. :(
Thank you to anyone who takes the time to offer suggestions. I apologize for my ignorance with names/terms, I'm still a newbie and the pet store here doesn't offer much information.