• You are viewing the forum as a Guest, please login (you can use your Facebook, Twitter, Google or Microsoft account to login) or register using this link: Log in or Sign Up
  • You can now follow UKAPS on Instagram.

Rotala Rotundifolia Stunted Growth

Joined
18 Nov 2020
Messages
38
Location
Lisbon, Portugal
Tank: 250L
Filter: Oase Biomaster 600
CO2: Yes, 3 hours before photoperiod, aiming at lime green
Photoperiod: 6 hours (including 30 min ramp up and 30 min ramp down)
Light: Twinstar 900, currently at 65%
Fertilizers: Using Tropica, currently using only Premium since the Nitrates are already @ 20-30ppm (7 pumps per day)
Fish: 3 Pearl Gouramis, 20 rummynoses, 10 Tetra Bentosi + 5 Otos + 2 SAE
Substrate: Aquasoil
Water Changes: 50% every week (religiously!)

After 4 months into my new tank, I am experiencing issues with my Rotala Rotundifolia growth. I did not plant the Rotala since the beginning, I added it later on (1 or 2 months after startup). After an initial good growth, I have trimmed it more heavily in order to eliminate some of the older ugly leaves. However, since this trimming the plant never grew completely healthy again. The new growth tends to be very small and the leaves quickly become damaged (as if they are broken).
This is the only plant I am struggling with, as all the other seem very healthy.

I have had some issues with GSA and a very short green hair algae (only in the driftwood), which I don't know the name of. The latter is like small tuffs of very short green hair. Because of this, I have been keeping a relatively short photoperiod with the light dimmed to 65% max.

My Nitrates are at 20-30 ppm and my phosphates usually at 0.4ppm. Because of this I recently started dosing Seachem Phosphates in addition to Tropica Premium, order to increase the phosphates.

Any clue on the reason behind this stunted growth? I chose the Rotala Rotundifolia because it was supposed to be an easy beginner's plant, however given this issues I am almost giving up on it and cutting it all off. Months go by and I can't seem to have my tank with a proper look.

I am not sure if the issue is completely clear in the pictures. Sorry, but I cannot better pictures than this.
 

Attachments

  • IMG_3448.JPG
    IMG_3448.JPG
    2.6 MB · Views: 221
  • IMG_3449.JPG
    IMG_3449.JPG
    2.3 MB · Views: 150
  • IMG_3450.JPG
    IMG_3450.JPG
    2 MB · Views: 162

paranoidandroid

Member
Thread starter
Joined
18 Nov 2020
Messages
38
Location
Lisbon, Portugal
I will try to add more pictures later today.
All rotala are affected. However, it seems as if the few ones that grow a bit taller have a more healthy new growth in size and appearance.
Could this be a light intensity issue since my light is dimmed to 60%?
 

Attachments

  • IMG_3451.JPG
    IMG_3451.JPG
    2.6 MB · Views: 145

Wookii

Member
Joined
13 Nov 2019
Messages
1,735
Location
Nottingham
I had this issue on my Rotala Orange juice. After reading similar forum posts the general consensus appeared to be insufficient CO2 levels.

I didn't really want to believe that as my drop checkers were both very light green. When I investigated further the output from my skimmer, which was placed just behind the OJ, was hitting the filter inlet pipe and basically create a low CO2 dead area around the plant. I moved the skimmer, cut off the stunted heads of the OJ, and now it grows like an absolute weed.

The reason for the anecdote is the stunting could well be CO2 related - even if your drop checkers are showing the right colour, your distribution pattern could be preventing sufficient getting to them.

As Hogan says, a FTS may help.
 

Sammy Islam

Member
Joined
12 Mar 2019
Messages
696
Location
Hertfordshire
I would say it's probably a CO2 issue considering it looks like the diffuser is placed under the output?

I would place the diffuser opposite to the output so the water takes the CO2 downwards and around the tank. Where as right now you have the CO2 in the upper parts of the tank that's why you are seeing better growth there.

I doubt it's a light issue as a twinstar at 65% is still decent for growth, but you could bump it up after you improve CO2.
 

Wookii

Member
Joined
13 Nov 2019
Messages
1,735
Location
Nottingham
Further to what Sammy has suggested, you may have your skimmer facing the wrong way also. The skimmer flow direction is running in the opposite way to that created by the filter outlet, so you are reducing the circulation, and the flow going to the Rotala stems. Stick the skimmer onto the side glass so it is firing down the rear of the tank, and you should get a nice circular flow.

EDIT: Your drop checker also looks pretty dark from the photo - though it's hard to tell in that image.
 
Last edited:

Raws69

Member
Joined
5 Oct 2020
Messages
196
Location
Essex
if this is just affecting the rotala is it going to be flow/distribution Of the co2? Rest of the planting looks healthy. Nice tank btw...
 

Hufsa

Member
Joined
22 Aug 2019
Messages
377
Location
-
I may be wrong but I think Rotala and some of its relatives are usually the first to struggle if CO2 is not perfect, because they are the fastest growers and therefore "hit the wall" the hardest.
 

paranoidandroid

Member
Thread starter
Joined
18 Nov 2020
Messages
38
Location
Lisbon, Portugal
Wow! Thank you for all the quick replies.
Answers:
1) CO2: I have only one drop checker but I have already placed it in different positions across the tank in different days, and the color seems to be consistent in different positions. I can try to position it lower in the tank, closer to the rotalas in order to be sure.
Yes, the diffuser is placed below the filter output. The idea was to use the flow to spread the CO2 around.
The Drop checker seems dark in the photo but it isn't in reality.

2) Output/Skimmer position: The filter output is close to the back of the tank (although in the photo it seems as if it is closer to the front). Therefore I think the positioning of the skimmer is not bad, since the flow that comes out the filter output reaches the zone close to the skimmer (in the back of the tank) and then the skimmer "forces it to turn" to the front side of the tank.

This is my newbie interpretation! Please correct me if I am wrong.
 
Joined
20 Dec 2019
Messages
373
Location
South Carolina
I had this issue on my Rotala Orange juice. After reading similar forum posts the general consensus appeared to be insufficient CO2 levels.
Without a doubt my experience as well. Rotala loves CO2. As long as your ferts are dialed in consistently, this will be your only problem. I have vibrant rotala with just 50% power on my Twinstar S, but experienced the stunting and small leaves as well before my CO2 was just right.
 

paranoidandroid

Member
Thread starter
Joined
18 Nov 2020
Messages
38
Location
Lisbon, Portugal
Thank you all for the inputs.
I changed the drop checker position to the location of the Rotalas and yes, it did not get lime green!
I now changed the position of the co2 diffuser to near the Skimmer and what a difference! Now the bubbles don't reach the surface and I see tiny bubbles all over the fish tank! I can visually see the it is being spread across the tank.
Now I even lowered the pressure as probably the previous regulation would be too much!

Thanks again for your help! I will report in a week or two to let you know if this solved the growth issue!
 

Wookii

Member
Joined
13 Nov 2019
Messages
1,735
Location
Nottingham
Thank you all for the inputs.
I changed the drop checker position to the location of the Rotalas and yes, it did not get lime green!
I now changed the position of the co2 diffuser to near the Skimmer and what a difference! Now the bubbles don't reach the surface and I see tiny bubbles all over the fish tank! I can visually see the it is being spread across the tank.
Now I even lowered the pressure as probably the previous regulation would be too much!

Thanks again for your help! I will report in a week or two to let you know if this solved the growth issue!

Nice one - hopefully that's fixed it for you. You might need to keep an eye on your drop checker, and adjust your injection rate if you are now getting more dissolution of the CO2.

On the stems, just cut off the stunted growth and they should put out normally growing shoots.
 

paranoidandroid

Member
Thread starter
Joined
18 Nov 2020
Messages
38
Location
Lisbon, Portugal
Well, now that I have the CO2 being properly distributed, I have another question... After 5 minutes of CO2 being on the water gets full of bubbles. This is a bit distracting and kind of ruins the experience. Is this something normal?
 

paranoidandroid

Member
Thread starter
Joined
18 Nov 2020
Messages
38
Location
Lisbon, Portugal
I am using an in-tank diffuser. The tanks I usually see in YouTube videos, etc, seem to show some bubbles but only closer to the in-tank diffuser, not across all the tank, hence my doubt.
 

paranoidandroid

Member
Thread starter
Joined
18 Nov 2020
Messages
38
Location
Lisbon, Portugal
An update:
I have installed an inline CO2 diffuser 2 weeks ago (CO2 Art) and now I have no doubt that the CO2 is being properly distributed. However, the growth in the Rotala Rotundifolia is still not healthy.
A minor portion of the stems does look healthy, however the majority continues to show stunted growth.
Any suggestions on what the next steps should be in trying to clear out this issue?
 

Attachments

  • IMG_3465.JPG
    IMG_3465.JPG
    2.1 MB · Views: 103

Similar threads

Top