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Thread: Blackish spots on Java Ferns (some leaves) only.

  1. #1
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    Blackish spots on Java Ferns (some leaves) only.

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    Tank Dimensions (LxWxH, specify units): 5 x 2 x 2 (Feet)

    Lighting Intensity(No of Watts) : 432W
    Number and type of Lighting (FL/PL/MH) : T5 HO 4 x 10000K, 4 x 6500K
    Age of light bulbs : 5 months
    No. of hours your lights are on : 10

    CO2 Injection Rate (bps) : 8-9
    Type of CO2 (DIY/Cylinder) : Pressurised CO2 (5L) Cylinder
    Method of Injection (e.g. Diffusor/Reactor) : Internal reactor

    Liquid fertilisers Used (Product name. E.g. Seachem Flourish) : Seachem Flourish, KNO3, Fleet Enema, K2SO4, Seachmem Iron, LushGro-AQUA

    Fertilization regime (Frequency and amount per dose) : E.I standard
    KNO3 + Fleet Enema - Mon, Wed, Fri, Sat (50% WC on Sat)
    Seachem Flourish OR LushGRO-AQUA - Tue, Thu, Sun


    Other fertilisers (Product name. E.g. Root Monster) : Sera Flowderpot

    Other additives (Product name. E.g. Seachem Prime) : NA

    Type of Filter (overhead/internal/canister, Product name/model if possible) : 2 x Eheim Professional II 2028
    When was the filter last washed : NA
    Filter media used : Standard Professional II media (Efhi Substrat Pro, Mech, etc)
    When was the media last changed : NA
    What was changed :NA

    Age of setup (i.e. since initial setup or last major re-do ) : 3 months plus

    Water change frequency : Weekly
    Amount changed : 35-50%

    Water surface movement (None/gentle/turbulent) : gentle
    Circulation (None/gentle/turbulent) : gentle

    Tank Temperature : 27.5 - 28.0

    Chemical Properties (Fill what you can)
    -------------------------------------
    KH (dKH): 4.0
    GH (dGH): NA
    pH : 6.6
    NH4 (ppm): NA
    NO2 (ppm): NA
    NO3 (ppm): 36.2 (weekly) - (each dose @ 9.05PPM)
    PO4 (ppm): 7.12 (weekly) - (each dose @ 1.78PPM)
    Fe (ppm): 0.72 (weekly) - (each dose @ 0.24PPM)

    Bioload (Number and type of fish and plants)
    ------------------------------------------
    Flora: Windelov, Java, Narrow Java ferns, Anubias Coffeelia, Nana, Petite Nana, Vallisneria, Echi. Osiris, Echi. Amazon, Echi. Tenellus, Hair Grass, Crypt. Brown, Wiselli, Eriocaulon.

    Fauna: Discus, otos, SAEs, rummy nose, neon, black widow, congo, bleeding heart, black phantom tetras, pygmy puffer, corydoras.

    Describe your problem :
    ----------------------
    The java fern leaves have blackish spots (not to be mistaken with burn spots or rotting leaves) on them. Not on their underside but on the top side of the leaf. However, plants area growing and plantlets sprouting on the underside of the leaf. Other plants not affected except for Java Ferns, some of the nana (petite) leaves and the older Echi. Amazon leaves.

    The rest of the plants are unaffected at the moment. I read from some online resource (might be outdated - http://badmanstropicalfish.com/plant_problems.html) that it is caused by excess phosphates (PO4)?

    Or is this caused by excess NO3 or lack of some nutrient? Or too much lighting? Currently using 8 x T5HOs but last 2 T5 tubes switch on 4 hours later then the rest.

    I have tried rubbing off the blackish part but it is quite difficult to remove. I do see a new leaf starting to have a rush coat over it (this particular leaf is directly facing the lights - the ones that's being sheltered are not affected in any way.... too much light theory?) Or worse, could it be BBA?

    My PPM for CO2 is currently stable at 30.1PPM (all the way throughout photo period) and pearling of most plants from extreme left to extreme right of tank is noted within 1 1/2 hours into photo period.

    P/S: Mods, if this post is posted in the wrong section, please assist to move to the appropriate forum. thanks.
    visit my photo albums @ flickr!

  2. #2
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    Anyone?

    Anyways I have cut down the lighting to 6 T5HOs only, which his 2.2WPG or should I further cut down to 4 T5HOs which will be 1.4WPG only.

    Advisable?
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    I can't help you, but I recall vaguely somewhere that the black spots aren't good. Perhaps take a picture of a infected example leaf?

    Java fern that were black-spotted and crinkly are imho a sign of them not being in good conditions (pretty impossible given your tank specs imho).

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    Hey Terence,

    Yeah, I'm a little puzzled too. From what I know, it seems to be only on the slow growing plants, i.e. Java Fern.

    Don't know if this photo would be sufficient but see the Java Fern leaf at the back of the discus. Can you see the blackish spots? (circled in red)



    And another photo of the java ferns, might be able to spot those blackish spots.



    Could it be due to my lighting, them being too strong? Think the photo above is a better photo. Would 4 T5HOs be insufficient lighting? I did see Oliver Knotts tank settings, his 500l tanks have only 2 x 80W T5HOs which is only 1.2WPG only. Currently my setup is 2.2WPG, reducing it to 4 T5HOs will have it reduced to 1.4WPG, adviseable? If lighting has nothing to do with it, then I will re-add my missing T5 tubes to bring it back up to 2.9WPG.

    Currently this is the layout of my lighting.

    (1st lamp)
    1st tube: 10K tube
    2nd tube: 10K tube
    3rd tube: 6.5K tube
    4th tube: 6.5K tube

    Same goes for the 2nd lamp.

    After which I reduced the lighting and have the following layout

    (1st lamp - at the front of the tank)
    1st tube: 10K tube
    2nd tube: 6.5K tube
    3rd tube: 10K tube
    4th tube: 6.5K tube

    (2nd lamp - at the back of the tank)
    1st tube: 10K tube
    2nd tube: taken out
    3rd tube: 10K tube
    4th tube: taken out
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    They look like BBA to me. I had those on my Nana leaves too.

    More likely your CO2 distribution is not good enough yet, water flow issues I guess. Wait for Peter's comment.

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    Yikes, BBA again?!

    Only way to to snip them off? Weird thing is that its only affecting the JFs and a few of the nana leaves.. the rest aren't affected.

    Gonna install all the lights back on since its not a lighting issue.

    Peter, please advise
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    Don't panic yet Might not be BBA, I'm just speculating. Reason being big tanks often have flow issues, and BBA often appears first on slow-growing plants.

    PM Peter

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    PMed Peter
    visit my photo albums @ flickr!

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    Terence,

    In the mean time, for my lighting issue, does it really matter if its 2.9WPG or 2.2WPG or having it reduced to 1.4WPG? When I reduced the lightings last night, the nanas started pearling, prior to that, the tenellus, amazon, osiris, java ferns and coffeelia were pearling @ 2.9WPG, downsizing it to 2.2WPG, the nanas joined in...

    I find it a bit weird though....

    My major concern now is that with the layout (as explained below)

    (1st lamp - at the front of the tank)
    1st tube: 10K tube
    2nd tube: 6.5K tube
    3rd tube: 10K tube
    4th tube: 6.5K tube

    (2nd lamp - at the back of the tank)
    1st tube: 10K tube
    2nd tube: taken out
    3rd tube: 10K tube
    4th tube: taken out

    Would the back flora suffer?
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    I've added back all the lights. So its back to 2.9WPG.

    Anyways this is a closer shot of the most 'infected' leaf with its offspring.

    visit my photo albums @ flickr!

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    Looks abit like BBA. U have any Otto or pelco in your tank to help clean them off?

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    Pleco is a no, Otos yes, but heard that 1 Pleco for every 2 feet. I guess I need 2 1/2

    Anyways, still the confirmation of the BBA or not.
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    I've quite the same problem but mine are cause by lighting issue, only happen to fern and nana. I just cut the leaf that black spot on other leafs that are under my log don't get it so....i also moved some of it to a nano tank with only cherries, so far it is not affected. Hope it help

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    Hi Grey_fox. I had the same issues like you. But I had it even on some tenellus. As for ferns and nanas, I dipped them into bleach solution and snipped the offending leaves. Now they still get it but not so bad - have to look carefully to spot it. But with bleaching, you have to be careful. Too much of a hassle unless planning an overhaul. Now, whenever I spot it, I snip it off. I take it as part of maintenance. It's either a sort of algae or plant disease.

    After a tiring time figuring out the balancing act of ferts, lights, C02, water flow etc. I'm just too tired. So now I just go snip, snip, snip. heh heh.
    Psst...beware of the armless swordsman!
    Steven

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    Heh, yeah its part of maintainence I guess, but it would be great if we can all overcome this problem, at least a solution or work towards that.

    I don't think I can pull out the Java Ferns as they have rooted themselves to the driftwood and to have to re-tie them would cause pretty much distress to the community of discuses in there (as well as myself )

    So far my CO2 levels are consistent (daily testing) but still don't know what that black spots are despite the fact that the plants are shooting plantlets.

    I do wonder if its due to the high lighting I have or not as earlier mentioned that only the slower growing plants get affected (as well as a few of the much older leaves on the Echi. family group) and only the leaves that are directly facing the lights directly get affected the most or should I add a few mini power-heads to drive the flow of water better? The mist-method shows the CO2 bubbles travelling from up to down, then right to left.

    When you look at Oliver Knott's tanks and setups, his lightings chosen are about 1.2WPG for a 5 footer (e.g. 500L with only 2 T5HOs @ 80Watts each) and the plants are growing beautifully. Even his monster setups (1000L) use only 2 x 150MH lights.
    visit my photo albums @ flickr!

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    Hi Grey_Fox, looking at your setup, I knew it would be troublesome for you to do anything drastic. Anyhow, to throw a spanner in the works, my tenullus (a moderately fast growing plant, right?) that is affected has the whole plant facing the lights. Yet only a couple of leaves are affected. When my lights was 72w for a 15 gallon it happened. Now I'm on 36w, 15 gallon, I still see it. Do you know how frustra...hey, of course you know. Having worked in tech-support, solving problems through the process of logical thinking and elimination should help. But in this case...I'm stupified.
    Psst...beware of the armless swordsman!
    Steven

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    I read from somewhere (around the forum) that for blackish spots on other plants are due to BBA at work or due to irregular, inconsistent CO2/fert regimes.

    I bought the ferns from Teos and they were emersed forms and after reading this thread, http://www.aquaticquotient.com/forum...ead.php?t=9472 and bclee's explanation, I guess mine's due to the leaves dying off (conversion from emersed to submersed).

    The newer leaves are not affected (plantlets) and are still green. As for tenellus, mine are so far not affected, still reddish-green and quite lush.
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    I tend to sway towards inconsistent C02 explanation because the black spots are also on the nana and tenellus. Had some ferns that grew emmersed. During the submerged state, the entire ends of the leaf turns dark/black, not spots, before new leaves sprout. I do have leaves going through this stage and looks different from the issue at in hand. What we are facing is black spots peppered on the leaves, correct? I really apologise for being such a party-pooper.
    Psst...beware of the armless swordsman!
    Steven

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    its alright, no worries about being a party pooper. Just wondering as the leaf that is affected is an emersed leaf.

    Anyways, if its not a change-of-state leaf (emmersed to submersed), then I guess it might be something else (or worse), but if it is, then at least I know what would be going on. So for the time being until a real confirmation can be given, I'll still expect the worse case scenario.

    The nanas (petite only) that I have are only 'peppered' cover about 5% of the leaf but do wonder if its black spots of just the malayan prawn's shit and sometimes (the spots) disappears the next day.

    Anyways, let's try to get a solution for this issue hehe.
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    Has anyone checked if PH has any effect on this? Strangely or co-incidently I have the same problem with all of my Java Fern. About a month ago, I took out some from my tank (PH 6.5) and throw it into my pond (PH unknown, I'll check later). If we suspect lighting, then this would be totally reversed. My pond is outdoor full & direct sun at least 6 hours. That JF is right under the sun...

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