Amazon Swords Rotting

Joined
Jan 11, 2005
Messages
630
Reaction score
0
Location
Vermont
Do plants just get worn out over time? I had two beautiful, large amazon sword plants that I had to pluck from the tank yesterday because both of them were rotting at the base of the stems. I became suspicious a few weeks ago as I noticed algae was growing on the leaves (which would mean they were not growing well anymore..) Then I noticed the leaves beginning to brown slightly and now the stems are dark brown along with the center of the leaf.

When I pulled the plants the roots looked pretty healthy -- no brown color or odor.

They were in a 72 gallon tank with 170 watts of 6700k lighting. Tank has stable CO2. KH is 3-4 and pH is 6.5. Phosphate measures at 0.50 ppm and nitrate is 5-10ppm. Also, I use root tabs.

I had the plants for almost a year now and they were beautiful specimens. Sad to see them go. :sad:

edit: also, the base layer in the tank is laterite.
 

Themuleous

Member
Joined
Jan 13, 2006
Messages
6,130
Reaction score
0
I dont know for sure, but I've noticed something similar with my plants, and they get 'tired' and dont produce the same lush growth, especially the large leave rosette type plants like swords and ech's.

I guess everything wears out eventually, and in the wild they probably dont last very long.

Sam
 
OP
Squirrelbuddies
Joined
Jan 11, 2005
Messages
630
Reaction score
0
Location
Vermont
Thanks, Sam!

It would make sense that they have a life cycle. The flowers in my perennial gardens do the same. Some of them only last for a month or so (ie, the poppies) and some go all summer before fading in the fall. I just didn't know if aquatic plants went through the same.

I took off all but three leaves on one of the swords and replanted it to see what will happen. As I mentioned above, the roots look healthy.
 

NAL

Member
Joined
Mar 26, 2006
Messages
79
Reaction score
0
Location
Reading, UK
Try some root tabs. Swords and Crpyts like nice nutritious substrates, and contrary to popular belief, laterite isn't the best for providing nutrients-it has a lot of iron but has a low cation exchange capacity-in other words, it isn't very good at binding other important nutrients. Whenever I've kept Swords in stuff like flourite, particularly relatively new set-ups with out lots of mulm and stuff, they don't do so well. They certainly perk up though if you add a root tab every week or two. I personally have found the soft-clay based substrates are the best-like ADA or Florabase. They are much more 'soil-like' in their properties.

Nick
 

Liam

Member
Joined
Jun 13, 2006
Messages
1,136
Reaction score
1
Location
London
It doesn’t sound so much like they are rotting just not getting enough food. I think Nick is right. I have had them last up to four years before I took the tank down, if they are happy they should produce lots of baby plants and seedpods on long vertical stalks. If the new leaves are smaller than the old ones it means they are hungry I think. I make small soil plugs out of peat and garden and pond soil and put them in the substrate. Seems to work for them. As the roots are healthy get them some root food and they should take off again.
 

Dude

Member
Joined
Jan 2, 2006
Messages
600
Reaction score
0
Location
Israel baby
god gives life... god take it away...

lol ...

i guess it was its time ...
im sure it gave its shots (children) for the next generation..
 
OP
Squirrelbuddies
Joined
Jan 11, 2005
Messages
630
Reaction score
0
Location
Vermont
I've been using the Seachem root tabs -- but I'm guessing not often enough as I was only adding new tabs every 8 weeks or so.

I'll try to revive what's left with more frequent tabs. I like the idea of the small soil plugs, too.

And to cheer myself up, I bought a new sword for the tank. It's a different type, the leaves start out a very dark brown/reddish color and then green-up as they develop. Very lovely plant.

Thanks for the replies!
 
OP
Squirrelbuddies
Joined
Jan 11, 2005
Messages
630
Reaction score
0
Location
Vermont
Ok -- I just had a thought as I walking by the tank (imagine that!) I think I read somewhere that there are aquatic plants that do not tolerate certain other species and they will deteroriate when placed together in the same space.

Approximately 3 weeks prior to the swords showing visible signs of distress, I added a lovely Aponogeton undulatus. It's been growing like crazy and is a very large, beautiful plant. However, it is located right next to the swords so I'm sure that the sword's roots are very near, or touching the bulb and roots of the Aponogeton.

Maybe the aponogeton is leaching some chemical into the substrate that is toxic to the swords?
 

Themuleous

Member
Joined
Jan 13, 2006
Messages
6,130
Reaction score
0
Its certainly possible. There is bound to be more going on in a tank than we know or probably will ever find out. Lots of terrestrial plants are parasitic, not saying the Aponogeton undulatus is but who knows what it could be releasing! And in the confines of a tank the effects could be greatly multiplied.

Sam
 

Tote

Member
Joined
Sep 12, 2006
Messages
14
Reaction score
0
Location
Swansea, Wales
I became suspicious a few weeks ago as I noticed algae was growing on the leaves (which would mean they were not growing well anymore..)
Approximately 3 weeks prior to the swords showing visible signs of distress, I added a lovely Aponogeton undulatus. It's been growing like crazy and is a very large,
You've probably answered your own question :D as far as i'm aware all Aponogeton sp. are med-fast growers with heavy demands on substrate nutrients. Possible that the sword just couldn't compete and obtain enough nutrients.

I think I read somewhere that there are aquatic plants that do not tolerate certain other species and they will deteroriate when placed together in the same space.
Diana Walstead has a chapter on this in her book Ecology of the planted Aquarium. Allelopathy = "the production and release of chemicals ('allelochemicals') by organisms into thier environment that act on other organisms" (for good or bad). Had a quick scan thro - no A. undulatus mentioned, but she lists Aponogeton krauseanus (sounds painful :lol: ) as releasing several chemicals that inhibit various organisms. Prob with this is that it will be virtually impossible to find out in a home set up.

I would say its more likely down to nutrient deficiency. Keep your new one futher away from the Aponogeton & once it's settled in, up the rate of root tabs a bit. Good luck with it!!
 
Search tags for this page

amazon sword leaves rotting at base

amazon swords deocmposing

apponogeton krauseanus

Top