Rotala Macrandra Difficulties

PhillyB

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Dec 27, 2006
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All,

I purchased many stems (~30 stems) of rotala macrandra about 1 1/2 months ago. No Success. I planted them in both my 29 gallon carbon tank and my 10 gallon excel tank. Both tanks are using EI, details on the 29 gallon are below.

The plants melted very quickly in the 29 gallon (w/ 65W of PC), but held on a bit longer in the 10 gallon (w/ 28W of PC). I am wondering if anyone has any tips for this plant.

My hypothesis is that the plant was not able to root appropriately and therefore died. The reason I am stating this is that the stems disintegrated, in the 10 gallon many of the leaves did not drop off as quickly as the stems feel apart and the plant floated to the top. Also, I left one stem floating in the 29 gallon and this floating plant is doing much better than the ones which were planted (and now thrown away). The floating plant is actually growing roots from the stem and is in fair condition. What is going on with that? If I plant it now, is it likely it will survive?

29 GALLON COMPRESSED CO2 (drop checker with 4KH at Yellow now, fish are OK.)
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Ferts
3x a Week = 5ml Tropica Master Grow; 1/4 tsp KNO3; 1/16 tsp Mono Potassium Phosphate;
1x a Week = 1/8 tsp Potassium Sulfate; 1/4 tsp Magensium Sulfate; 1/2 tsp Calcium Sulfate.

CO2
Compressed. Drop Checker at a light green with 4 deg. KH solution.
I run the CO2 line into a RIO 180 to chop up the bubbles. The air intake of the RIO is also re-routed into the impeller.

Circulation
1 RIO 180 for CO2. Another for additional circulation. (2 x 120 gph)
FLUVAL 205 (180 gph) hooked into a Spray-bar.

10 GALLON EXCEL
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Ferts are dosed 1x a week at 1/2 the measurements above.
HOB Filter, and a single RIO 180 for circulation.
 

fjf888

Guru Class Expert
Oct 29, 2007
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Northern Virginia
PhillyB,

With my tank, this is the only plant that I have had complete failure on. This is tough plant to grow and transport can greatly affect its overall health. All your stats for the 29G tank look fine, some would say that you need more lighting, but I do not think that is the case. The stems deteriorate quickly if the plant does not quickly take root. When I was trying to figure out why the plant failed several people mentioned that you have to 0 Nitrates. That does not make sense to me. I figured mine basically failed because it was before I was doing EI, and I did not sufficiently feed the plant.


What is your substrate?
 

Tom Barr

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Jan 23, 2005
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It's always done well for me in lower light, more abused tanks really.

As long as if had ample room and was not trimmed too often.
Once it gets going, it grows rather fast.

ADA As seems to help some, soft water also(low KH, not GH)

Regards,
Tom Barr
 

PhillyB

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Dec 27, 2006
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Thanks for the replies. My tap water comes out of the tank with a KH of 2. I increase the KH in my compressed CO2 injected tank to 4 with baking soda. In my excel tank I do not add anything to increase the KH. I am going to try and plant the one that I left floating as it seems to be sending out some roots and we will see how that goes.
 

fjf888

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Oct 29, 2007
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Tom,

In one of Greg's posts in another thread he stated that he can make reds turn green by increasing the lighting, CO2, hence growth rate. Do you find this to be the case as well?

What do mean by lower lighting in the thread (2wpg?). I bought some Macandra this weekend trying to give it a go again.

Thanks,
 

fjf888

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Oct 29, 2007
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PhillyB

I have read, and Tom seems to alluded to it, that finer substrate (ADA soil/sand)seems to help Macandra grow better, although I suspect with all else being ideal it should grow fine in flourite as well.
 

reiverix

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Jan 29, 2005
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I recently turned my 75g very high light (6*54W HO T5) tank into a low light tank, running only 2 bulbs. I have to say the rotala mac and L. glandulosa look better than ever. I even turned off the CO2.
 

travis

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Aug 30, 2006
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I've kept R. macrandra in all types of substrates: Aquasoil, Eco-Complete, Flourite, quartz sand, and even Caribsea's KH-buffered Cichlid Sand. In the harder substrates (Cichlid Sand, Eco-Complete) I noticed a higher tendency for the stems to melt although those stems that did not melt seemed to do fine going forward. I've had the best luck with Aquasoil and quartz sand, possibly because of their neutral to acidic makeup. I've also had better luck using good to possibly excessive lighting.
 

creighton

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Jun 18, 2007
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fjf888;21400 said:
Tom,

In one of Greg's posts in another thread he stated that he can make reds turn green by increasing the lighting, CO2, hence growth rate. Do you find this to be the case as well?

What do mean by lower lighting in the thread (2wpg?). I bought some Macandra this weekend trying to give it a go again.

Thanks,

I have it in a 20gal with 55w on it and the Macandra is turing a shade of medium green. It has these weird lime green veins on the leaves though.
 

Tom Barr

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Jan 23, 2005
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reiverix;21402 said:
I recently turned my 75g very high light (6*54W HO T5) tank into a low light tank, running only 2 bulbs. I have to say the rotala mac and L. glandulosa look better than ever. I even turned off the CO2.

Ditto, you'll see the granulosus turn slight yellow if it gets too little light.
Most folks did amazing with R macrandra here in sF prior to high light, most had 1.5-2.2 w/gal normal output etc.

Neil Frank sent R macrandra for several years to th auctions using 2-3 w/gal of Normal output, soft water, soil etc.

Hardly high tech.
Some things require patience..........not more light/CO2 etc.
I suppose this is one, same for Crypt affinis.

These plants did do very well in the low tech old school methods.


Regards,
Tom Barr
 
M

mrkookm

Guest
Med lighting is what I have over these 58watt x 4 mounted 13" above water.
KH 0~.5, GH 5, lots of Co2, lights on for 1hr and 13~14" from water surface.

rot.jpg
 
E

evandro.carrenho

Guest
I had the same issue with Ammania Gracilis and Ludwigia Arcuata. In my case stems were melting due to substrate being depleted from nutrients. It was almost 1 year old.

After adding solid fertilizers, I got those plants fixed.

You mentioned that floating plants are growing roots. It seems that they can get more nutrients from the water column than the substrate.

Regards,
Evandro.
 

PhillyB

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Dec 27, 2006
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Yes, the floating plant lasted much longer than the ones which I immediately planted.

I have placed the floating plant into the substrate to see if it does well. It has been a week and it seems to be doing just fine. I will give it some more time, but it seems the plants which I immediately put into the substrate went into shock and died. The one which just floated for some time seems to have adjusted better. The only difference I can think of is the higher availability of CO2 when the plant floats.