Can't Grow Anything

NotCasper

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Hello, from my other posts of learning my tank has been running smooth fish wise, but i need help with plants. I can't grow anything. It was my plan from the beginning to have simple plants and slowly replace the fake ornaments and plants in my tank to make is lush and filled, but 6+ months in and i only spend money on murdering plants. It is a 29 gallon tank with the critters i have in my signature. PH is 7.5, Ammonia and Nitrites 0, Nitrates between 10-20. I have a Finnex Fugeray Planted+ that stays on for 7 hours. I dose Seachem Flourish twice a week and i switch from dosing with Excel to not every couple months to see if that ever makes a difference (it does not seem to). I also have Seachem root tabs for the amazon sword. Everything i read online would say this is a great set up and everything should grow like weeds. I have had like 12 stalks of Water Westeria die, dwarf water lettuce and moss that doesn't die but also doesn't grow, and Amazon Sword and Anubis that are slowly (sometimes rapidly) dying. Could anyone look at the pictures and let me know what they think? I am just trying to grow nice anything for my fish. Thank you for your time. Oh and to add about a little over a month ago i switched my substrate from gravel to white sand you cant tell cause it keeps getting brown on top of the sand and doesn't seem to vacuum up well.
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endlercollector

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I am puzzled about your anubias and java ferns not making it. On the other hand, I don't do less than 12 hours of light on my plants. Have you tried increasing the hours of light?
 
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NotCasper

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@endlercollector so I started with 10 hours of light but on one of my two or three other posts it was suggested I drop it to 7 or 8 so that’s where I kept it. @Goldiemom No ma’am no salt in the tank.
 

Gypsy13

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I understand your frustration. I’ve got a banana plant that’s trying to take over the world and java moss that just sits there. Now, in my experiences with java moss, keeping it in check is the problem. Mine is a pile of blah.
 

endlercollector

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NotCasper said:
@endlercollector so I started with 10 hours of light but on one of my two or three other posts it was suggested I drop it to 7 or 8 so that’s where I kept it. @Goldiemom No ma’am no salt in the tank.
I find that odd because these are tropical plants. I'm from Hawaii, and so I grew up with an average of 12 hours of daylight (varying between 11 and 13 roughly) year round. At the Equator, that's really 12 hours every day. Unless there's a problem with algae, I wouldn't do less
 

Thunder_o_b

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I am seeing diatoms on the plants. this cuts the light getting into the plant. Try this:

1. Get ottos (6+) and/or several nerite snails.

2. Dose flourish once a week.

3. Dose Flourish Excel every other day for a few weeks then everyday (it is liquid carbon that also helps with algae)

4. Dose Flourish Iron once a week.

As for your light I am not familiar with that brand.

The water looks cloudy. Are you under filtered? This will cut down on the light reaching the plants.
 
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NotCasper

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@Thunder_o_b I could probably get another snail, my tank is pretty maxed out with the fellas I got in it. I was doing flourish twice a week but I can drop it to one. Will also drop excel to every other day (currently doing it almost every day). Will look for iron. The water is cloudy I’m 90% sure I’m having a bacterial bloom this week because I just added 5
Cory’s last Sunday.
 

Lunnietic

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You could be over fertilizing? My anubis does fine without me adding anything to the tank. (Other then prime during what changes no fertilizers or root tabs).
 

-Mak-

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The sword looks like it has very severe macronutrient deficiency. Yellowing and browning starting on the tips of old leaves is a sign of nitrogen deficiency. If you have nitrogen deficiency you probably have a couple others too.
It looks like your substrate is very thin. Swords have big root systems, so yours isn’t able to develop a healthy root system. In addition, sand is inert and Seachem root tabs are still low in macronutrients. Give API root tabs a try as well as Seachem’s, they have more macros.
Flourish is also low in macronutrients to the point where it barely has any. If you look at the analysis on your bottle you’ll see that it has 0.07% nitrogen. Dosing twice a week makes that 0.14% which isn’t very different. For comparison, a lot of all in one ferts have 1.0 to 3.0% nitrogen, which is 10 to 40 times as much nitrogen. A better water column fert may be aquarium co-op’s easy green or Nilocg Thrive.

The diatoms are not a result of excess fertilizer, they are a result of poor plant growth. Healthy, fast growing plants hold off algae on their own.
 

TexasDomer

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I would even suggest going with the DIY root tabs of Osmocote Plus inside gel caps. They have sufficient macros and micros, and they're cheaper than the name brand root tabs. I use them in all of my tanks and the root feeding plants love them. You can either make them yourself, or buy them from Ebay very cheaply.
 
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NotCasper

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@DoubleDutch I am not sure how is that a test kit of sorts? @-Mak- So you bring up the substrate, if i look through my random phone pictures it looks like the plants start to go in April, March 31st is when i swapped out all my black gravel for Imagitarium White Aquarium Sand. I put in 25lbs of sand. I will go out today and see if i can find some API root tabs to add with my Seachem when i do a water change later today. I will also look on Amazon to see if i can add one of those column ferts for shipping (pretty sure petsmart/co don't sell them here). @TexasDomer Do you have a DIY link for root tabs? When i look for Osmocote it wont ship to Alaska. So another couple questions i have is should i be cutting off any leaves that are not green near the base of the plants? or just let it keep running its course? and should i raise the Sword up and scoop more sand from the front to the back? Again i want to thank all of you for your time and help.
 

Thunder_o_b

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Yes, trim all leaves that are not healthy. They sap resources from the rest of the plant.
 

Goldiemom

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endlercollector said:
I find that odd because these are tropical plants. I'm from Hawaii, and so I grew up with an average of 12 hours of daylight (varying between 11 and 13 roughly) year round. At the Equator, that's really 12 hours every day. Unless there's a problem with algae, I wouldn't do less
I do 12 a day of light.
 

chantnplant

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I don’t know if you are able to or willing, but organic soil underneath the substrate can sub for most of your dosing. That’s just my two cents.
I have a 60g tank set up that way with lots of plants and they are doing great.
 
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NotCasper

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@Thunder_o_b Last night i trimmed most of the leaves, i felt bad cause the stems seemed so healthy. If they are turned a little bit would you leave them and just get the real bad ones? or the minute they arnt green you chop them? @Goldiemom I bumped it to 8hrs and will slowly watch to see what happens. @chantnplant Someday i will do that. I just switched to the sand and wish i had, so i was going to wait awhile hopfully get everything back on track and try that.
 

Thunder_o_b

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NotCasper said:
@Thunder_o_b Last night i trimmed most of the leaves, i felt bad cause the stems seemed so healthy. If they are turned a little bit would you leave them and just get the real bad ones? or the minute they arnt green you chop them?
Sometimes I will let the leaves go if they are just starting to go bad. I will clip the dead part back to the good on my Madagascar lace plants. but generally I will clip the leaf if the rest of the plant is healthy. It is a balancing act with plants that are struggling. At this point I would say clip the leaves back to the good part until the pants recover then clip the whole leaf. It is surprising how fast a healthy plant puts out leaves.
 
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