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How low no3 to make rotala red?

Discussion in 'General Plant Topics' started by ibanezfrelon, May 23, 2010.

  1. ibanezfrelon

    ibanezfrelon Guru Class Expert

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    Hi!
    I would just like to know, as every ''reddish'' plant turns green in my tank due to the 40ppm of added nitrogen, how low should no3 get so that my recently added rotala and my evergreen limnophilla aromatica turn red?

    Some technicalities:
    Light- 2x45wt5 ,
    Fotoperiod:9h
    Filtration: 2xinternal filter (2x600lit-h)
    Flow pumps: Atman 2x500lit-h , 1x350lit-h
    Overall flow: aprox 2500lit-h
    CO2: 20kg pressurised tank , fabco nv
    CO2 level: DC is yellow , CO2 goes through an airstone and into the three Atman flow pumps and spreads across the aquarium , co2 is set as high as it goes , if i turn it up higher my fish start to pass away.
     
    #1 ibanezfrelon, May 23, 2010
    Last edited by a moderator: May 23, 2010
  2. argnom

    argnom Guru Class Expert

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    Hi there,

    In my experience, Rotalas will turn red whenever they feel like it. Mine would stay green until they reached close the the water surface. I have never tried to lower N levels to try and force it. If it works, it's probably a stress reaction and not all that good for the rest of the plants in the tank.

    Now for your limnophila aromatica, all I can suggest is what works for me. Lots of CO2, lots of micros and macros and they will turn red. Almost purple when they are close to the surface. I did not have to do anything special. The only thing I can think of that may be "special" is the fact that I have 2x40W T5HO on a 3 foot 28gal tank, so lots of light.

    This is all I can add. Hope it helps.

    Cheers!

    View attachment 1432

    Picture 86..jpg
     
  3. DaBub

    DaBub Guru Class Expert

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    I do not think low nitrates have anything to do with it.
     
  4. Philosophos

    Philosophos Lifetime Charter Member
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    Low nitrates limits the formation of chlorophyll, whereas the anthocyanins involve nothing beyond HCO. It's a pretty solid method, though good CO2 is of course more important.
     
  5. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    CO2= lots of red pigment production.
    NO3 does work, but I've not found it that great myself, a few that fiddled carefully with testing etc, have from time to time.
    Many use Photoshop, I've busted a dozen or more claims that their "methods" resulted in red color by back photoshopping the posted image.....................

    Nice red color may have something to do with some color temps, spikes and our perception as well.
    I cannot discount either of those causes.

    I've seen it first hand in my own tanks using the same sediment, species, dosing, water , flow, filters, water changes etc etc.........the light was different.
    Some do really well in the 8800K PC lights(greener plants), others do much better in the Giesemann powerchrome mix(redder species).

    Weird stuff.

    I've seen some really red varieties of R indica. rountundifola var Singapore, but I've also seen heavy use in ADA's contest pics of Photoshop.
    Hard to say without seeing things in person.

    Still, R macrandra is also variable, I've seen very nice growth at lower NO3, and it was very pale.
    Others had overloaded fish stocking, high NO3, and real red coloration in this specific species.

    So.........

    Hard to really say,.

    Good GH, good CO2, some color tempos/bulb types might help.


    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  6. argnom

    argnom Guru Class Expert

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    That explains a thing or two. :rolleyes: lol

    There certainly are good photographers and scapers (and shoppers) in that contest, but there's a whole lot of post-prod going on. Those pictures are not straight from the memory card to say the least.
     
  7. ibanezfrelon

    ibanezfrelon Guru Class Expert

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    The guy that gave me Limnophila has Rio180 like me, 2x45w t5 lights, but he dont have any co2 system and he only fertilizes with Easylife Profito (traces).
    When he bringed the plant to me it was red and purple, realy beautiful.. ..but as soon as i put it in my tank new green leaves started to grow and now the whole plant is light green.
    Same with my rotala, got it red and now it's green.
    I noticed that only when limnophila reaches the top and if i leave it there for two weeks than it gets a little bit of color but as soon as i trimm it it's green again.
     
  8. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    Non CO2 limits growth and the rates, I've found many species look nice and red in non CO2 tanks.

    Since the rates of growth are limited mostly by CO2, the NO3 can be kept at a lower level.
    The plant is stressed but not so much so it's a problem. This is due to a difference in the rates of growth, slower is easier to control and deal with.

    Adding CO2 helps increase the rates of growth, but not colors like the reds.
    There's less stress when we add CO2.

    I've had some really red colors in non CO2 tanks, slow growth, but red color.
    There's a trade off there.

    I get a real nice purple color on mine, and better color with the 9235K GE's and the Giesemann bulbs.
    The 8800K do decent for some species, but more for good green plant growth.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  9. argnom

    argnom Guru Class Expert

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    I really need to try those Giesemann bulbs one day. I've never read a negative post talking about those.
     
  10. chad320

    chad320 Prolific Poster

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    I have VERY red R. rotundafolia but very green L aromatica. I even bought some purple aromatica and it turned green on me so the rotundafolis and Limnophilas reds are from two different sources. The rotundafolia changed drastically for me with the addition of CSM+B and 10%DTPA cheleated Fe. As for the L. aromatica I have never personally seen a "red" one but I have seen purple. IDK what makes it turn purple but what im doing isnt the trick. Its not high lighting, high co2, EI dosing, or worm castings so im also open to HELP!!
     
  11. ibanezfrelon

    ibanezfrelon Guru Class Expert

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    Thanx folks for replying to this thread..
    So what Tom is saying is that limiting CO2 means limiting growth rate and paralel with that one can limit no3 to get those plants red ???
    Uuu, i dont think i will try that , wouldn't that bring more trouble than it's worth?
    I mean, whenever there's an algae issue, or deficency issue it's mostly due to a low co2..

    What Chadn is saying is very interesting to me..
    Few days ago i've had an argument on one forum about that , one colleague recommended do another to up the iron in order to get the reddnes in rotala..
    ..as i'm dosing 2ppm iron with csm+b and my rotala' s as green as grass i did not agree with that statement.
    I think that's a misconception, maybe it's because iron is red so it's easier 4 us to think that it can make the plants red too.
    Maybe the reason that rotala is red and limnophila green in the same tank is diferent levels of no3 needed for this plants to turn red , maybe limnophila needs even lower no3 to get red.

    I have some rotala in my betta cube so i will try to limit no3 to see if it will turn red
     
  12. mi5haha

    mi5haha Prolific Poster

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    if plants are growing good in high NPK, immediate shifting to low NO3 will make leave turn white in around a week time.

    harder water will limit the plant from growing fast. that means the same piece of leave will have much longer time under the same lighting conditions, if with suitable spectrum, suitable lighting time, more chance to turn red.

    an Australian guy had dozed five time iron and got his plants red, but still with high light.
     
  13. chad320

    chad320 Prolific Poster

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    I dose alot of Fe, to the point that I sometime fight hair algae. I also dose alot of NO3 so its definately not the trick togetting rotala to turn red.
     
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