So close to giving up on real plants... - Page 2 - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #11 of 26 Old 05-04-2012, 11:43 AM
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There is a lot at play in a planted tank, hence all the questions that have been asked. And I have more.

Were the plants doing fine prior to the recent substrate switch?
What is the sand you now have?
You say hard water, do you know the GH? What is the pH? And temperature?
Is the Water Sprite floating, or planted in the sand?

If you are not seeing algae increasing, then the light--even though it is strong with two tubes over a 55g--is probably not the issue (either too intense or two long), and I would not yet double the Flourish Comprehensive.

I know how frustrating and disheatening it is to have an aquarium with continual problems, whether plants or fish, and nothing seems to work. I have been there, more than once. Try to think positively, there must be a solution and we will find it. And a photo would help, of the overall tank; don't use flash.

Byron.

Byron Hosking, BMus, MA
Vancouver, BC, Canada

The aquarist is one who must learn the ways of the biologist, the chemist, and the veterinarian. [unknown source]

Something we all need to remember: The fish you've acquired was quite happy not being owned by you, minding its own business. If youíre going to take it under your wing then youíre responsible for it. Every aspect of its life is under your control, from water quality and temperature to swimming space. [Nathan Hill in PFK]

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post #12 of 26 Old 05-04-2012, 12:39 PM Thread Starter
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post #13 of 26 Old 05-04-2012, 12:40 PM
This might sound silly but, is it not possible to over-fertilize your plants? I know over-fertilizing houseplants, garden plants, grass, etc., leads to burns and die-off. I would think it's possible to do the same with aquatic plants?
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post #14 of 26 Old 05-04-2012, 12:42 PM Thread Starter
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The vals were doing fine before the change to pool filter sand. Not sure what my gh is but the ph runs 8.2-8.4. New tank so no algae. The water sprite is floating. Will try and get pic up later. I'm trying my best not to panic but just spent 70 dollars on plants.
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post #15 of 26 Old 05-04-2012, 12:49 PM
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Originally Posted by Stormfish View Post
This might sound silly but, is it not possible to over-fertilize your plants? I know over-fertilizing houseplants, garden plants, grass, etc., leads to burns and die-off. I would think it's possible to do the same with aquatic plants?
Yes.

Aquatic plants can be negatively affected by too intense light. To long a duration can also cause trouble, though here it is usually algae increasing before any actual plant issues (from not getting enough complete darkness).

Nutrients have to be in a relative proportion according to the plants needs. Various plants can take up and "store" some nutrients. But some nutrients in excess (= beyond what the plant needs) can cause problems by inhibiting other nutrient uptake. This is why in a natural (low-tech) system, plant nutrient fertilization must be controlled and balanced.

Byron.

Byron Hosking, BMus, MA
Vancouver, BC, Canada

The aquarist is one who must learn the ways of the biologist, the chemist, and the veterinarian. [unknown source]

Something we all need to remember: The fish you've acquired was quite happy not being owned by you, minding its own business. If youíre going to take it under your wing then youíre responsible for it. Every aspect of its life is under your control, from water quality and temperature to swimming space. [Nathan Hill in PFK]
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post #16 of 26 Old 05-04-2012, 12:55 PM
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Originally Posted by smit3183 View Post
The vals were doing fine before the change to pool filter sand. Not sure what my gh is but the ph runs 8.2-8.4. New tank so no algae. The water sprite is floating. Will try and get pic up later. I'm trying my best not to panic but just spent 70 dollars on plants.
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The Vall is likely just the change then. Check to see if the pool filter sand has other ingredients, sometimes it does. Just to be sure. The WS as noted in the profile does not like changes to water chemistry; i have this plant in all my tanks but one, and even moving a small plant from one tank to another will set it back.

You haven't answered redchigh's question on the fish and feeding, this is worth knowing. On teh GH, can you find this out from the water supply people? This is important, as calcium, magnesium, potassium, sulfur and perhaps other trace mienrals can be present (or not) in tap water and this impacts plant growth.

Beyond this, i will wait for a photo.

Byron Hosking, BMus, MA
Vancouver, BC, Canada

The aquarist is one who must learn the ways of the biologist, the chemist, and the veterinarian. [unknown source]

Something we all need to remember: The fish you've acquired was quite happy not being owned by you, minding its own business. If youíre going to take it under your wing then youíre responsible for it. Every aspect of its life is under your control, from water quality and temperature to swimming space. [Nathan Hill in PFK]
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post #17 of 26 Old 05-04-2012, 01:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Byron View Post

Nutrients have to be in a relative proportion according to the plants needs. Various plants can take up and "store" some nutrients. But some nutrients in excess (= beyond what the plant needs) can cause problems by inhibiting other nutrient uptake. This is why in a natural (low-tech) system, plant nutrient fertilization must be controlled and balanced.

Byron.
So Byron, how do you work out this balance? is it trial and error, if the plants do badly then its too much ferts. etc or is there some mathematical formula.

Also when is the optimum time to dose the flourish? is there a time in the daily cycle where the plants will absorb more than others etc..

cheers.

Peace always..

If you worry you die, and if you don't worry you still die..... so why worry?
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post #18 of 26 Old 05-04-2012, 03:26 PM
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So Byron, how do you work out this balance? is it trial and error, if the plants do badly then its too much ferts. etc or is there some mathematical formula.

Also when is the optimum time to dose the flourish? is there a time in the daily cycle where the plants will absorb more than others etc..

cheers.
I dose Flourish in the morning just before the lights come on, on the day following the water change. Obviously plants need nutrients in light, so this makes the most sense to me. The light period begins, the nutrients are added, the CO2 is at its highest...everything the plants need is available.

On the balance, partly yes. In my case, I know I have very soft tap water so all those minerals are lacking and have to be added. If the tank is new, organics in the substrate will be non-existent and slowly build, so nutrients have to be supplied to compensate for that. At the start I dose Flourish Comp once weekly, and I put a Flourish Tab next to each of the larger swords. I start with a reasonable light duration. Then just monitor. Allowing for the obvious decline in new plants or a new setup, if the plant grow seems fine I leave things and keep an eye out for algae (which of course is more likely in a new tank due to unstable biology, so this has to be considered too).

If after a few weeks I see plant issues, I may up the Flourish. Or look for specific nutrient issues. Usually this isn't necessary for those with the basic medium hard water. This is why knowing the GH at first is important, in case you have to compensate. And dosing individual nutrients can be dangerous, to plants and fish. But using a balanced preparation solves this at least. And high-tech tanks are a somewhat different game, though balance is still essential.

Byron Hosking, BMus, MA
Vancouver, BC, Canada

The aquarist is one who must learn the ways of the biologist, the chemist, and the veterinarian. [unknown source]

Something we all need to remember: The fish you've acquired was quite happy not being owned by you, minding its own business. If youíre going to take it under your wing then youíre responsible for it. Every aspect of its life is under your control, from water quality and temperature to swimming space. [Nathan Hill in PFK]
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post #19 of 26 Old 05-05-2012, 10:14 AM Thread Starter
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post #20 of 26 Old 05-05-2012, 10:53 AM Thread Starter
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here is the pic of the tank. Obviously not good with camera
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