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Author Topic: Amazon Sword turning transparent  (Read 1984 times)
Catzeyz
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« on: June 04, 2016, 09:34:14 PM »

Hi, I'm new to a planted tank. I have had 4 swords for 6 months and they were great. (went from 6" to 18") Now, 2 weeks after adding oto's and increasing my light time from 8 hours to 12 hours, they are turning transparent. (Could it just be the old leaves? The newer ones are not as transparent) I have never added any supplements, should I? I do have Seachem Flourish and Seachem Excel. Other plants doing well. (1 Anubis Nana, 1 med Marimo Ball and Java Moss on driftwood) The only product I have ever added is Kent Blackwater (only did on a few occasions... didn't like the tea stained look)

Tank is 35g long, 75g Aquaclear filter, Fluorite substrate, 1 Zoo Med 17w Ultra Sun bulb (know i should probably have more watts, but hood came with the tank, $ ran out, and I thought all was well)

pH 6.6 (I have filtered tap water)
Amonnia 0
Nitrite 0
Nitrate 5-10 (hard to be sure, using API test kit)

gH 8 (had been at 20!!, I admit that I only tested twice after tank first cycled and it was at 1, I assumed it would be same as the 25g, only tested again after leaving tank in care of hubby for 1+ week and it was super dirty. It is now down to 8, and am thinking it will drop further as my 25g is similar set up and use same water, with no plants and it's gH is 1)

Pair of Bolivian Rams
25 Espi Rasbora
6 Oto's

Sorry for the long post, but wanted to provide more than not enough info. Thanks.
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gunnered72
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Gender: Male
Ireland, Republic of Ireland, Republic of

Tanks: 240, 100, 70, 50, 30, 30, 25 Litres
Posts: 1,040


Theres more water than air in here :P


« Reply #1 on: June 05, 2016, 02:39:39 AM »

When was the last time you changed your lighting tubes? I reckon your lamp has passed its sell by date (The light output from them deteriorates over time) They may look fine to the human eye but the plants will definitely notice...I recommend changing tubes every 9 months and also clean any grime build up on them regularly...You should also consider adding a reflector (if you do replace your tube / it will do nothing if your tubes are old)...Your plant leaves going transparent is a classic lighting issue...

You should actually maybe consider LED replacement lamps...They last a hell of alot longer are much cheaper to run and the light output is much better than T8 flourescents... http://www.arcadia-aquatic.com/classica-led-lamp/

12 hours is too long for lights to be on...8 hours max is recommended...You are only encouraging algae...

Dosing liquid ferts (Flourish) and liquid Co2 (Excel) is very very beneficial for plants...
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I love to hate Water Changes! :P
Catzeyz
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Canada Canada

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« Reply #2 on: June 05, 2016, 09:16:08 AM »

I've only had this light since February. I increased the light to produce more algae as food for the oto's. So aside from algae production would leaving the light on 12 hours do any other harm? I have had no algae bloom since increasing the lighting (thanks to the oto's, they are amazing little cleaners, and cute too.) When you say it's a lighting issue are you saying the light is not strong enough? Because when I was having them on for only 8 hours a day they seemed to be flourishing.... As mentioned it seems to only be the old leaves turning transparent. Also forgot to mention that one of the swords new leaves seem to be curled around the edges. Wow, thanks so much for the led info... In all my looking I've never seen these ones, going to look to see where I can buy them right now. As for using Flourish Comprehensive it says to dose 1 or 2 times a week, which would be better? Also with the Excel should I be worried about it lowering my pH further? And how often should I really dose with it? Bottle says daily or every other day. Thanks.
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Catzeyz
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Canada Canada

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« Reply #3 on: June 05, 2016, 09:20:08 AM »

forgot to ask, would i be better getting the tropical led, or the sun led for my tank? Thanks
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TwoTankAmin
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Tanks: 20- from 5.5 to 150 gals.
Posts: 343



« Reply #4 on: June 05, 2016, 10:20:39 AM »

Your bulb is just fine. I use them as well as other lighting and love them. Because they are a triphosphor bulb you should be able to use them until they burn out unlike standard fluors.

Sword plants, when they arrive, should have a decent amount of stored nutrients which will allow them to survive for months. Many believe that swords are somewhat heavy root feeder and should have additional substrate ferts. I am in that camp. I have been fertilizing mine for years every 3 months or so with a decent substrate fert. I have one compacta sword now for over 13 years and it is still doing fine.

Have a read here, it is Tropica's substrate fert. http://tropica.com/en/plant-care/nutrition-capsules/

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“Everyone is entitled to his own opinion, but not to his own facts.” Daniel Patrick Moynihan
Catzeyz
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Canada Canada

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« Reply #5 on: June 05, 2016, 01:21:21 PM »

So you think I should be ok with the 1 17w bulb and just start using a substrate fert?
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TwoTankAmin
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Tanks: 20- from 5.5 to 150 gals.
Posts: 343



« Reply #6 on: June 06, 2016, 09:11:41 AM »

I am assuming what you have is Echinodorus bleheri not amizonicus which is less common. here is what Tropica writes re bleheri:

Quote
  Echinodorus bleheri from South America is undemanding and beautiful, and becomes 20-50 cm tall. A nutritious bottom promotes growth, but the plant needs pruning to prevent it depriving plants underneath of light. Echinodorus bleheri does well even in poorly illuminated aquariums, as it grows towards the light. It is a hardy and easy solitary plant for both beginners and the more experienced with quite large aquariums.
from http://tropica.com/en/plants/plantdetails/Echinodorusbleheri%28071%29/4512
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“Everyone is entitled to his own opinion, but not to his own facts.” Daniel Patrick Moynihan
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