01-25-2013, 12:15 PM
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I have seen everything you posted (photos) on my plants too.
The sword in the first photo of post #2 is Echinodorus major, no doubt of that. As I mentioned in the other thread, mine are not doing particularly well now, after over a year of phenomenal growth. Nothing much has changed in my case with respect to light or nutrients [but see following]. Kasselmann says that difficulties with cultivation can usually be resolved through intensive fertilization of the substrate as well as more powerful lighting. Thinking back, when I had this plant growing 30 or more leaves that reached 18-20 inches in length, and it even sent out two inflorescences that flowered and produced several adventitious plants [something quite rare in submersed cultivation], the only change was the substrate fertilizer. I was then using the Plant-Gro sticks by Nutrafin; these are no longer available anywhere, online included. My other swords grew faster with these too, so substrate nutrients may be significant. I have the adventitious plants in my Flourite-substrate tank, but they are not doing that well--another indication of how "useless" such substrates are. I intend to tear this tank down shortly and replace the Flourite with sand; I will put 2 or 3 Flourish Tabs next to these plants then, and see if that makes a difference.
As for the other plants, I think you need more liquid fertilization. I find twice weekly doses of Flourish Comprehensive (the full dose each time) essential or my chain swords look like those in the photos. Since I moved back up to twice weekly, they have significantly improved. I did experiment with this, doing twice weekly for several months, then once weekly for about 6 or 7 months, now back to twice. It has made a difference.
Light might be marginal, with one T8 tube [assuming this is T8] but the ZooMed UltraSun is a decent tube and I was managing with one Life-Glo T8 over my 33g. Replace the tube every 12 months or so; I let mine go to 18 months I think it was, and the plants definitely weakened. They are now coming back with the new tube after a few weeks.