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twiggin
10-01-2009, 10:44 PM
Hi everyone

I'm cycling my 30 gallon tank (fishless) right now, about a week into it. I brought home some java fern just over a week ago and put them in. A couple of days ago they started to have a sort of rusty brown cast on some of the leaf surfaces. I wondered if it was algae -- it seems like it's on the well-lit surfaces. I tried rubbing it off, but it didn't work.

Otherwise the plants seem to be doing okay. The roots growing from the baby plants at the ends of the leaves have definitely gotten longer and more robust.

I got Java ferns because they seemed like they could handle relatively low light (I only have one bulb - a 24" 20 watt glo-life), and since they grow on rocks I don't need to worry about the fact that I forgot to put laterite in the gravel. I also got the impression that they could do without carbon enrichment -- now I'm wondering if that might be an issue.

I did fertilize the water with trace minerals twice now.

Any thoughts?

twiggin
10-01-2009, 11:00 PM
here's a picture of one of the leaves -- if I managed to upload it properly.

Anomaly
10-02-2009, 02:12 AM
How is the Java Fern planted? The rhizome doesn't need to be under the substrate if you have it planted in the gravel. Also, since they're fairly new plants to your tank, they could just be adjusting to the move. If the leaves, keep turning brown, go ahead and cut them off to allow for new growth.

robnepper
10-02-2009, 02:20 AM
If the actual plant isn't turning brown, but just getting a film, it's diatoms. Cut back on any ferts and other nutrients and let them settle in. No, they don't require co2. Mine do great on the same watts per gallon as you have I am a bit more heavily planted than you in a year old 20 gal.. It gets a dose of fertilizer every water change and every thing seems to be going well. The only problem is that my now BN is finding them very tasty...grrr.

twiggin
10-02-2009, 01:30 PM
Thanks folks.

They aren't planted in the substrate -- I've attached the rhizomes to rocks with rubber bands. I don't see much evidence of root growth on the larger plants, just on the babies at the ends of the leaves.

Also I just noticed today that though the leaves of the babies seem to be growing, the tips of them are darker and look like they are translucent. I'm hoping that doesn't mean they are about to die back. They looked like they were doing so well!

I'll avoid fertilizer until I do my first water change.
Glad to hear I don't need a carbon set up.

thanks again!

rich311k
10-02-2009, 01:33 PM
Sounds like diatoms and/or some algae stemming from a new setup. I am sure they will do just fine once the tank matures a bit. I would not add ferts if all you have are some java fern plants under low light.

Lady Hobbs
10-02-2009, 02:07 PM
If the actual plant isn't turning brown, but just getting a film, it's diatoms. Cut back on any ferts and other nutrients and let them settle in. No, they don't require co2. Mine do great on the same watts per gallon as you have I am a bit more heavily planted than you in a year old 20 gal.. It gets a dose of fertilizer every water change and every thing seems to be going well. The only problem is that my now BN is finding them very tasty...grrr.

Right on! I was just about to write diatoms when I saw this post.

It wipes right off but pretty annoying for awhile.

Anomaly
10-03-2009, 01:27 AM
Also I just noticed today that though the leaves of the babies seem to be growing, the tips of them are darker and look like they are translucent. I'm hoping that doesn't mean they are about to die back. They looked like they were doing so well!


Just sounds like new growth to me. That's how my new Java Fern leaves look on the tips until the leaf fully grows out.

twiggin
10-03-2009, 02:34 PM
Thanks all
It's been nicely reassuring. I'll just sit back and watch. And lavish all my attention on my ferns while I wait for my fish!!!

t

Wild Turkey
10-03-2009, 05:28 PM
I agree it could be diatoms, if it doesnt wipe off its probably just dying off and regrowing, my java ferns do this sometimes when i move them you can pluck the brown leaves once they are all the way brown and lay them flat on the gravel and the will sometimes grow several new sprouts