Tips on getting Alternanthera reineckii "red"? - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
 
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post #1 of 8 Old 01-11-2013, 06:45 PM Thread Starter
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Tips on getting Alternanthera reineckii "red"?

I have some Scarlet/Red Temple and it's growing great. Only problem is, no red at all. Pretty sure I have intense light, my Red Flame sword is almost black! I'm doing pressurized CO2 with EI dosing, but is this a case of too much nitrogen?

Any tips on getting this plant to redden up more?

18 species/varieties of fish, 15 species/varieties of plants - The fish are finally ahead of the plants!
*560 gallons (2120 liters) in 5 tanks -> you do the math.
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post #2 of 8 Old 01-12-2013, 11:28 AM
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Add some blue LEDs that peak around 425nm.
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post #3 of 8 Old 01-12-2013, 12:38 PM
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I wouldn't think your light is too little; you don't mention what it is, but as you have CO2 and EI dosing and as I know you are experienced I would assume it is adequate. [And by the way, red-leaf plants need more red light since they are reflecting that to appear red.]

So that brings us to the cultivar. If you check our profile, Alternanthera reineckii, you will note there are several and some have olive green leaves. Have a read of that and see if perhaps this may apply.

I might suggest iron, but not knowing how much you may be dosing now I wouldn't recommend increasing it as this can cause other problems. Plus the fact that your other red-leaf plants are OK as you have said, leads me to think it is not light or nutrient but cultivar.

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 you’re going to take it under your wing then you’re 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 #4 of 8 Old 01-13-2013, 06:17 AM Thread Starter
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Byron, thanks for the suggestions. I don't think iron is the issue either. The light's ok. Twin T5HO, one a "red" plant bulb, intensity is right at 45 mmol/m2/sec PAR at the substrate. Unless something's mutated, I don't think it's the cultivar - it's red in two other tanks. After further research, it seems that this plant needs really high nitrogen to turn red, unlike some other plants that turn red when nitrogen-deficient. I'll try upping my nitrogen fertilization slightly and see what happens over time. I'm under-dosing the dry fertilizers in this tank slightly, so that might explain the problem.

18 species/varieties of fish, 15 species/varieties of plants - The fish are finally ahead of the plants!
*560 gallons (2120 liters) in 5 tanks -> you do the math.
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post #5 of 8 Old 01-13-2013, 09:38 PM
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ETurn up the nutes, EI is all about making sure there is plenty of everything in the right proportions. In my understocked tanks, I would add more N (I think you want 20-30ppm nitrate for EI, but I could be wrong.) Tom Barr seems willing to help aquarists, maybe shoot him an email?

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post #6 of 8 Old 01-14-2013, 08:39 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks, I'm on Barr's forum, so I may post something there!

18 species/varieties of fish, 15 species/varieties of plants - The fish are finally ahead of the plants!
*560 gallons (2120 liters) in 5 tanks -> you do the math.
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post #7 of 8 Old 01-14-2013, 12:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by redchigh View Post
ETurn up the nutes, EI is all about making sure there is plenty of everything in the right proportions. In my understocked tanks, I would add more N (I think you want 20-30ppm nitrate for EI, but I could be wrong.) Tom Barr seems willing to help aquarists, maybe shoot him an email?
I hope there are no fish in this tank. With nitrates that high they will suffer.

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 you’re going to take it under your wing then you’re 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 #8 of 8 Old 01-14-2013, 01:43 PM
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In my tanks with 5-10ppm nitrate, I've dosed potassium nitrate up to 25ppm, and within an hour they dropped back down. I wouldn't advise keeping them at 30, but dose up and see how far it drops back down. I'm afraid this topic is now running in two different threads, but they're too different to merge. Hmm.
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