Holes appearing in my crypts

Discussion in 'Plant Help' started by Simon, 28 Jan 2008.

  1. Simon

    Simon Member

    Messages:
    55
    Location:
    Essex
    I've noticed the crypts in my 5 gallon Nano have started to suffer a bit.

    Looks like a small hole appears then a section of the leaf dies off. They were doing really well, chucking out new leaves and roots. Can snails do this? Or could it be as the tank has matured the nutrient levels have dropped too low?

    The substrate is silver sand with a layer of Sera Bioplast. I have only started adding a little Tetra PlantaMin recently as I was concerned about kicking off an algae bloom.

    The tank looks very healthy, no algae, and everything else is doing very well.

    Simon
     
  2. ceg4048

    ceg4048 Expert/Global Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    8,937
    Location:
    Chicago, USA
    Hi,
    Disintegration of plant structure is almost always associated with nutrient (primarily NO3/PO4) or CO2 deficiency. The substrate feeding may not be enough to sustain the growth levels commanded by the lighting level. Algae blooms are not kicked off by nutrients in the water column. Algae blooms can and do occur with zero nutrients in the water. Conversely, plants are rarely ever in their optimum condition with low nutrient levels. It's likely that the NO3/PO4 levels that are in your tap are insufficient. Consider adding these, whether dry powder or commercial liquids in order to sustain the growth levels. It's not clear what your lighting levels are so it's hard to determine whether CO2 supplementation is required.

    Cheers,
     
  3. Simon

    Simon Member

    Messages:
    55
    Location:
    Essex
    Thanks for the detailed reply.

    I have a one of the cheap Tetra Co2 diffusers....I get the feeling this is next to useless.

    Lighting is 11w unit. Will I get the neccessary nutrients from the tetra Plantamin if I start to use it regularly?

    Simon
     
  4. ceg4048

    ceg4048 Expert/Global Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    8,937
    Location:
    Chicago, USA
    Hi,
    Tetra Plantamin is only a trace element mix. This contains Iron, Manganese, Zinc and so forth. Plants need only a small amount of these trace elements which are analogous to vitamins that we would take. The meat and potatoes for plants would be Nitrogen, Potassium and Phosphorous as well as Carbon. Tetramin does absolutely nothing to satisfy these "macro" nutrient requirements. What is more scandalous I believe is the content of the description of the product which normally appears as something like:

    "...PlantaMin does not contain any additional nitrate or phosphate, and therefore does not encourage algae to grow..."

    This is an absurd contention but we have been programmed to accept this statement as true. In fact, just the opposite is true, and if we starve the plants of NO3 and PO4 we will encourage algae.

    If you wish to serve a balanced diet to your plants consider using a commercial product such as "Tropica Plant Nutrition Plus" http://www.aquaessentials.co.uk/index.p ... ts_id=1725

    You can also use the much less expensive dry powders shown on this page: http://www.aquaessentials.co.uk/index.p ... th=145_146

    It does not matter that your diffuser is cheap. In a small tank such as yours, the inefficiency of a cheap diffuser can be overcome by simply increasing the bubble rate. Are you using a dropchecker filled with 4dkh water to determine your CO2 levels?


    Cheers,
     
  5. Simon

    Simon Member

    Messages:
    55
    Location:
    Essex
    ceg4048....you clearly know your stuff. ;) ;)

    I appreciate your help.
     

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