View Full Version : Ozelot sword growing new leaves with short stems

08-21-2012, 03:04 AM
I've had an Ozelot sword in my tank for over 3 weeks now, and it sprouts a new, bright red leaf about once every 5 days. Seems pretty healthy, considering that the leaves that came with the plant were greenish-brown and its sprouting so often.

However, all of the new leaves dont seem to grow long stems. They all hang pretty close to the bottom of the plant, even when the leaves what I would consider full size.

I'm currently dosing excel daily (the stated amount on the bottle), and flourish every 5 days. The tank is a 20 gallon tall, and has a 4x18W T5 hood on it with 3 pink plant bulbs and one 10000k daylight bulb (keeps the tank from looking like fire and brimstone...)

Any reason why this would happen? Do the stems just take longer than the leaves to grow? Is my light too high so the stems don't need to grow to reach it?


08-21-2012, 04:36 PM
the fact that your sword leaves are "bright red" and you have close to 4 watts per gallon above your tank suggests that the sword does not need to stretch to get enough light.

08-21-2012, 05:05 PM
That was the only solution I could come up with that made sense. Thanks for confirming. Should I just turn off a bulb or two? I can't raise the light because it sits on top of the tank.

08-21-2012, 07:37 PM
The sword is not getting harmed, so it would be your choice of what's prettier, a long stemmed one with green leaves or a bright red one. I personally would love to have a bright red plant in my moderate light tank but well, grass always is greener on the other side!

08-21-2012, 11:40 PM
Ah, good point. I love the color, so I'll keep it the way it is. I'll just have to move it from the back of the tank to the front...

Sorry for all the questions, but I'm guessing my new rose sword will begin to do the same thing? I really want tall plants in the back of my tank, but the swords wont do if they'll all grow short...

08-22-2012, 12:20 AM
Your doing it right! Ozelots should not be leggy at all. If you want some taller swords get 2 true amazon swords,they get very tall and bushy with good light. The "rose"swords will also grow taller then the ozelots even with high light.Put them as far back in the tank as possible to keep them out of the brightest light and they will do great. WQith high growth they will also need supplemenal root tab fertilizers such as flourish tabs,2 per plant a few inches from base of each one,make there roots reach for them.

08-22-2012, 12:46 AM
Sweet, thanks! I'll have to go grab some amazons...I have some more space in the back to fill anyways. My hood is all the way forward on the tank to make room for the filters, so the back should be a perfect place for them.

I just got some fert pellets from AquariumPlants.com for my new tank, but I'm sure I can spare a few for this one.