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How much bleach can my plants handle?

Discussion in 'General Plant Topics' started by Carissa, Apr 10, 2008.

  1. Carissa

    Carissa Guru Class Expert

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    I'm fighting a nice crop of bba and thus far bleach has been the only thing that produces any change in it. However it doesn't seem to have killed it off, just lightened the color of it to a lighter greenish pink and the base of where the bba is growing from is still dark green. I'm using a 1:20 ratio and soaking for three minutes. The plants I've tested in this have no apparent negative effects from the soak after two days. So I would like to try increasing either the length of the soak or the concentration. Any suggestions for how much I could try? Mainly it's java ferns that are having the trouble, but it's also on crypts and hygrophila. I tested a java fern plant and a hygro stem with the bleach but haven't tested crypts since they're harder to remove from the tank.
     
  2. plantgut

    plantgut Junior Poster

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    Spot dose Hydrogen Peroxide.
     
  3. Carissa

    Carissa Guru Class Expert

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    Tried it three times, it did nothing other than create lots of bubbles on it for a little while.

    If the bba dies, will it fall off? I'm wondering if the stuff that turned a lighter color is actually dead, but still stuck to the leaf.
     
  4. Gerryd

    Gerryd Plant Guru Team
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    Carissa,

    Does it come off if you rub it with/between your fingers? This type of algae really sticks to leaves, so it may need help to get off even if dead or weakened.

    Good luck!
     
  5. Carissa

    Carissa Guru Class Expert

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    No, it sure doesn't want to come off. However if it's not green anymore, it can't be doing photosynthesis anymore, can it?
     
  6. VaughnH

    VaughnH Lifetime Charter Member
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    My fish just eat the BBA once it turns white. And, I mean they eat every bit of it. I had my piece of "driftwood" completely covered with BBA, so I soaked it in bleach water, until the BBA was white. I still couldn't rub it off, so I put it in the tank that way. The guppies, primarily, began to graze on it, and after a week there was no BBA left on the wood.

    Java fern is very resistant to bleach water, so I have been able to soak it in a stronger solution for longer - whatever it takes to turn the BBA white. Anubias also survive such a longer, stronger soak. But, stem plants sometimes do very poorly even with a brief soak as you described. I think stem plants do best if you just toss the BBA infested parts and let the rapid growing plant reconstitute itself.
     
  7. Carissa

    Carissa Guru Class Expert

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    I think the bleach is working. I soaked my java fern for 5 minutes and by the end of it, the algae was coming off in little chunks. I also tried a crypt for three minutes, if it survives I'll do the rest of my crypts too. My hygro isn't really that bad, I took out a couple of infested stems but otherwise I don't think I have to worry about it.
     
  8. Joetee

    Joetee Prolific Poster

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    H202 spot treat for BBA

    Hey all, I had a very bad case of BBA that completely covered my wood. I tried H202 and like said, it only made it sick for a week and then came back. So I removed the wood and painted it with straight H202 and let it soak for about 1 hour, painting it several times with 100% H202. It did not kill it. So I switched over to Excel spot treatment. It worked with flying colors. Awsome.
    Joe
     
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