Dying rotala macandra - help please?

ringram

Junior Poster
Sep 20, 2005
7
0
1
Sacramento
Hello. Hopefully you can help. I'm growing rotala macandra in my tank, which is doing pretty well, but the lower leaves gradually die. Is this generally a lack of a specific nutrient, Co2, or is it from having the light blocked?

The Co2 levels are good. In fact, a couple weeks ago I moved the Rhinox 5000 directly behind where they're growing and placed a spraybar above it, aimed slightly downward. I'll be honest by saying that I don't dose every day, but I feed the fish WELL once per day. Other than that, I do the usual EI dosing and do 50-60% wc's about every 4-5 days.

If you notice in the picture, the tops are doing quite well, but the bottom isn't so great. Could it simply be that as they grow, they shade the lower portions of the plant? If that's the case, how do people get nice bushes of this plant to grow without dying off?

By the way, the lights are Tek T5 HO, running 4x54w for 12 hrs w/ all 6 on for about 3 hrs/day. It's a 90g tank.
Any ideas? Sorry for writing a book. I wanted to give you all the info up front.

r. macandra (w/o flash)
macandra_1.jpg


r.macandra (w/ flash)
macandra_2.jpg


Thanks.

-Ryan Ingram
 

VaughnH

Lifetime Charter Member
Lifetime Member
Jan 24, 2005
3,011
94
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Sacramento, CA
When I had rotala macandra several years ago I always had this problem. The upper parts looked good, the plant kept growing to the surface, and the lower parts looked terrible. I finally gave up on the plant, and have since read where others say it is the shading of the lower parts that is the problem. I haven't seen any successfully grown r. macandra, so I'm still not sure what it takes.
 

ringram

Junior Poster
Sep 20, 2005
7
0
1
Sacramento
I'm guessing it's either the light shading thing, or still not enough Co2 actually getting to it. I don't see how the current diffuser could produce any more than it already is.
Maybe I should add a solenoid and buy a 2nd diffuser, so I can inject Co2 on opposite ends of the tank. I've seen some people do this to 4' long and bigger tanks with success.