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Brown diatom is usually a growing pain of planted tanks. Time helps a tank move past it. Sometimes as in my case it’s the source water and I always have a bit. Reverse Respiration can help remove it from your plants. Brown diatom can smother them. I’ve lost plants because of it. 

The short explanation is remove plants and soak them fully submerged in a dish with no lid in plain seltzer water for 9 hours in a dark room. Then replant them. This will kill the diatom and allow your plants to breath. I’ll attach the full article thread we wrote here. 

While the plants are out of the tank wipe your glass if it’s covered and do a large water change. Don’t overclean hard scape it will eventually go away and you would be removing a lot of beneficial bacteria since the BB on plants will already be removed by the seltzer.  

After you replant don’t wipe surfaces until brown diatom is gone. Wiping just realeases them in the water column and they settle back on the plants. 

Hope that helps. 


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On 7/25/2022 at 2:03 PM, TomO said:

Will a UV unit help?

Will a UV unit help?

In my experience no. It’s better to let it run its course as it only affects free floating not what’s already on the plants. If you clean everything up and put on the uv it can lessen further outbreaks but I still get them even running uv. 

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