Jump to content

Why aren't my plants growing? Algae problems too???

Recommended Posts

I have a 65-gallon corner aquarium that is aquascaped and planted as well. It has been set up for about 3 months now. I planted a bunch of valisneria spiralis in the background along with a Madagascar lace, crinum callimustratum, crypts, amazon sword, and lilys (tiger lotus and red dwarf lily). Along with this, I have anubias, buce, and moss. The buce and anubias is doing really well. However, it seems the plants in the background are struggling. I have shrimp king shrimp soil mixed with some uns controsoil for the background plants. I also put seachem flourish rootabs for the plants as well. The valisneria melted off but they still have these shorter leaves that are doing well. The Madagascar lace is seeming to struggle as it only puts out 3-4 leaves max, the lilies aren't seeming to do that well either as many of their leaves melt off. Why are my plants struggling? Should I try to increase the lighting? I noticed that I have a lot of diatoms and some green spot algae. Is there any way I can bring things back into balance and also have healthy growing plants? 

Details on the tank:

Ammonia- 0pp,

Nitrite- 0ppm

Nitrate- 20ppm


- 5 angelfish

- 15 duplicareus corydoras

- 6 otocinculus catfish

- 12 praecox rainbowfish

- 3 five-banded barbs

Photo of the tank


Link to comment
Share on other sites


what is your lighting schedule?

How much intensity for how long?

I have a fluval 2.0 light thats on for 8 hours a day. It also gets some sunlight on the front panel for about an hour. The fluval 2.0 is at 100% intensity because it is a relatively small light for the tank itself. 


They sound and look like theyre doing fine? Sounds like an initial die off followed by a recovery. I would monitor further

Oh ok, just making sure because I haven't noticed meltoff like this before. Also the plants just barely seemed to be surviving like the Madagascar lace. Not too sure though. I'll definitely keep an eye on it. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Poor plant growth and algae, go hand in hand, while good nutrition plus light equals good plant growth. Light is the driver of the plants nutrition uptake. Blasting light without providing adequate nutrition is a recipe for plant melt. A simple analogy is picture a person in a forced labor camp, they are forced to work hard while being provided with meager rations. This caused the body to consume its self to continue to work. (Imo) This is essentially whats happening with your melt. For newer setups that are minially planted, less light is more. As plants grow you then increase the light if there is not enough light at the substrate.

As far as your plants you are having trouble with, I would have to know more about your water perimeters. They might not be the best plant selections for your water perimeters.

Edited by JoeQ
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi @Yanni

1)  One of the water parameters that is missing is pH; and pH can effect the uptake of various nutrients by plants.  Please provide current pH of the tank.

2) The second water parameter that is missing is hardness, both dKH and dGH.  Hardness provides some information on available calcium and magnesium, both secondary nutrients.  Please provide dKH and dGH of your tank.

3)  Are you providing any fertilization besides the Dennerle Shrimp King Active Soil?  I looked and cannot find any information as to the nutrient analysis of the product.  Your nitrate level is fine but we have no information as to the availability of other nutrients. -Roy

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Create New...