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Plants seem to be dying, need some advice

Discussion in 'General Plant Topics' started by htram, Sep 2, 2010.

  1. htram

    htram Junior Poster

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    I'm new to all this and have recently setup an old 90 gallon tank with the following:

    2x 54w 12000 & 2x 54w 6500 (Don't have the 6500's yet so I'm running the 2x 12000s for 4-5 hours a day)
    90 gallon (48x18x24) tank
    Play Sand Substrate
    Plants: HC, Dwarf Hair Grass + some random stuff I put in to fill it up
    Co2 = Milwaukee Regulator + your reactor (Don't have the co2 regulator yet, so running no co2)
    Filter = Aqua Clear 110 hang over filter
    Fertz = EI method

    My question/problem is that I see most of my plants are dying right now (the hairgrass and hc look okay but most of the other plants look like they are withering, i think they are harder to grow perhaps?). I'm not sure if it's my substrate (play sand and nothing else) or the fact that I don't have my 2x 54w 6500s yet and I don't have co2 setup yet. I'm about >< this close to removing the play sand and putting in a Flourite or Eco Complete substrate. Wanted some advice before I spent the extra cash..

    Any help/advice would be greatly appreciated.

    Thanks!
     
  2. dutchy

    dutchy Plant Guru Team
    Lifetime Member

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    Hi,

    Plain sand is inert, but good water column dosing should provide enough nutrition for your plants. The only thin I can see so far is that you or not using CO2 but using 4 tubes, at least for a long period. I would use no more than 2 tubes, even when using CO2. As long as your CO2 is not working, don't use a light period longer than 8 to 10 hours and use some alternative C-source, like Excel or Easycarbo.

    regards,
    dutchy.
     
  3. fjf888

    fjf888 Guru Class Expert

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    Your plants are starving

    You are running extremely high light. Standard WPG is meaningless with t5 HO lights. With that much light your plants have a huge appetite for CO2 and everything else that they need. Save your money. In your current setup you would have the same results with ECO or Flourite as they are largely inert anyway

    There's nothing wrong with playsand as a substrate, you need to dose the water column and add Excel or an another liquid carbon product and dose the water column perhaps at 1/3 recommended EI dosing until you have CO2 up and running. You could supplement with osmocote as well per instructions on the site using the ice cube method which would help as well.

    You need CO2 of some type in there ASAP. Good luck
     
  4. htram

    htram Junior Poster

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    Thanks dutchy,

    I recently removed the sand substrate and put in 7 bags of eco-complete. Got my co2 up and running and am continuing to dose with the EI method--

    My schedule is something like this:

    Sunday - 1/4 tsp trace
    Monday - 1 tsp KN03, 1/4 tsp KH2P04
    Tuesday - 1/4 tsp trace
    Wednesday - 1 tsp KN03, 1/4 tsp KH2P04
    Thursday - 1/4 tsp trace
    Friday - Nothing
    Saturday - Prune, Clean, 50% water change and 1 tsp KN03, 1/4 tsp KH2P04

    Just adjusted my co2 today and it looks like I'm getting some decent pearling. However my HC and dwarf hairgrass are now browning at the tips and the leaves of some of my stem plants have either brown spots on them or are somewhat translucent..

    Thanks!
     
  5. scottward

    scottward Guru Class Expert

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    Brown spots on stem plants are a sure sign of CO2 deficiency. Since you have just adjusted your CO2 today, give things a week or two, the plants take time to adjust to the CO2 level. Pre-existing growth won't get any better (i.e. brown spots on existing growth won't go away). You will need to examine the new growth in a week or two - how does it look?
     
  6. htram

    htram Junior Poster

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    Thanks, I will keep an eye on it. Another question, I measured my nitrate levels today and saw that they were at about 40ppm.. bad?
     
  7. Whiskey

    Whiskey Subscriber

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    No,.. I think that's okay - but keep in mind that your plants are in shock right now so they are probably not consuming too much in the way of ferts. Give them some time to recover, and you will probably find that NO3 level goes down as the plants start to soak it up.

    Whiskey
     
  8. htram

    htram Junior Poster

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    Good deal. I changed 50% water again too and ill keep an eye on what happens. thanks everyone!
     
  9. htram

    htram Junior Poster

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    So I think I might have algae on my rocks now too..

    [​IMG]

    Any idea what kind that is + how to get rid of it?

    Measured my parameters today again and got:

    PH 6.6-6.8 (After 10 hours of co2)
    Nitrate 0
    Nitrite 0
     
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