Java Moss Problem

pinksprklmonkey

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So I bought a little bit of Java Moss about a week and a half ago that came on a little wood stand. I originally put it in my 55 gallon tank, but upon learning (on here) that my lighting was not conducive for growing plants (only a 17W bulb) I took it out and put it in my 10 gallon (which has a 19W bulb).

Today I went to my LFS and bought some free floating Java Moss (as well as some Java Fern) and attached it to a terracotta pot in my 10 gallon. After looking at the two side by side I realized how brown the other moss was.

So my question is, is there anything I can do to help the brown looking one? Plant food or anything? Or is it a lost cause?

Also, will these plants grow okay in the 19W light? I just don't want to kill them.

One more thing: because my tank is cycling I have my tank temp at about 85 degrees. Could this have done it? I could turn it down...
 

midthought

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My java moss turned brown as well, and I'm just assuming it's dead. >.< I definitely want to hear the answer to this.

I had thought that java moss was a very low-demand plant, and I believe java fern is the same way. I was never sure how I turned the moss brown -- temp too high, never dosed ferts... ???
 

Danionins.com

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My best looking java moss is in low-light unheated tanks.

I've heard that warmer temperatures will cause it to turn brown.

Dennis
 

Lucy

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Same here about the low light. It does really well in my tanks with incandescent light rather than fluorescent light
 

angelfish220

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I bought a little bit of java moss from a petco one time, and put it in my aquarium and it was all brown, I let it in anyway and 2 weeks later you could see the the new growth covered the brown and it was pretty...
 

midthought

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I did some research and found these possibilities:

- Water temp is too high.
- It needs ferts, particularly micronutrients and iron.
- It's not actually turning brown, it's detritus. Reduce water flow directly on the moss and feed less.
- It's not actually turning brown, it's algae/diatoms. Shrimp can pick it off (or I geuss just deal with it as one would with algae normally).

I think for me, it was the water temp.
 

Nutter

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Looks like most things have been covered. I will just add that Java Moss usually takes a month or two to establish & get growing well. It's not uncommon for it to turn a bit brown during that time. So long as it doesn't turn full on brown/grey & there is still some green on it, it should pull through.

If you think that it is something other than acclimatising, I would start with cleaning off any collected detrius & adding a dose of liquid fertiliser. Be sure to use a complete fertiliser rather than just Macro or Micro nutrients. If after a week or two there is no noticable improvement I would start looking at the other options midthought has given there.

Java Moss is also notorious for growing well in one tank but won't grow in another almost identical tank. Sometimes it just doesn't like where we want it very much & there's nothing we can do about it.
 

midthought

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I assume we treat it as with other browning/dying parts of plants -- just trim it off?
 

Nutter

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If you want to. It depends on how much is really brown but usually I just leave it until it's established & growing, then remove any dead bits. It's one of those plants I usually either leave alone or take out of the tank altogether.
 

midthought

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Ah. That makes sense, I think. Thanks, Nutter.

Also I'm surprised my roundup worked! ;D The joys of google.
 

Nutter

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Good stuff Glad it's starting to work out for you.
If there is a fair bit of green & it seems to be well attached, you can probably remove some of the brown stuff with a pair of scissor now. Only remove a little at a time, you don't want to suddenly expose the green growing points to exta light or it might shock the plant & stop it growing for a little while. It would turn brown again if that happened.
 

Nutter

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It shouldn't if you do it over a week or so OR if the brown stuff isn't providing much shade for the green parts of the plant. You need a pretty decent increase in the amount of light the plant is being exposed to to get it to go into shock. Usually not a problem but I always like to play it safe.
 

tom5678

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i have just got some java moss at the same time as 10 crystal red shrimp and one other shrimp (im not sure what the other one is).
i was wondering if there is any way to get it to grow really quickly. i know that some chemicals will kill the shrimp so i dont want to use any fertilisers.
also can i make it into a carpet by planting it into the sand like any other plant or does it need to go onto driftwood?
 

Kunsthure

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I'm not sure about the ferts because I don't use them.

One thing people do to create a moss carpet is sandwich a portion of it between two pieces of plastic mesh then anchor the mesh to the substrate. I covered a flat rock with my java moss so it'll create a little plateau "field" of java moss. You could probably just lay it on the substrate but you'd have to weigh it down somehow which would also mean the moss would attach itself to the weight.

-Lisa
 

Nutter

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Yep, just sandwich it between two weithed pieces of craft mesh.

Java Moss isn't the fastest growing stuff but it might respond to fertilizers & co2 depending on how much light you have over the tank. Use a liquid fertilizer if you want. It should be no problem for your shrimp. Tap water usually contains levels of Copper similar to or greater than most aquarium fertilizers so it shouldn't be a problem. There are a few fertilizers out there that contain no copper if your really worried about it.
 

tom5678

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well if the mesh is just to anchor it down then there is no need for that because it doesnt seem to be floating. i have had it now for 2 days and it hasnt moved from where i buried it. also the shrimps like to sit under it, because it is like a cave underneath.
i dont really want to use any fertiliser though.
would the shrimps get trapped in the mesh if they go underneath the moss?
 

Nutter

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you need to use the mesh so that the Moss doesn't rot & so that it has something to anchor itself to as it spreads out. The parts of Moss that you have buried in the substrate will rot away over a few weeks to a couple of months & the Moss left above the surface will be free to drift off to where ever the current takes it. you could just pull the Moss out of the substrate & let it go where the current takes it anyway. That's what I do with Moss in my RCS tank.
 
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