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Rotting Stems/Proper Planting Techniques?


Over the last few weeks, while battling my algae problem, I've notice some
of my newly planted Lysimachia nummularia var. aurea and Rotala rotundifolia
stems are rotting away at the base. They have all rotten from the tip of
their stems (under the gravel) to about 2" above the gravel. I was looking
through some past messages and read that this can attributed to incorrect
planting methods when a plant bunch is first planted.

What is the correct way to plant bunches? I always remove the lead wire tie
and then just grab the bunch, dig a small hole in the gravel (about 2"
deep), put the bottom stems of the bunch in the hole and then push the
gravel back in to hold it in place. Does this sound correct or should I be
doing something else? Should I be pruning the stalk ends first before
planting, or should I only plant a couple of stems together from the bunch
and not the whole bunch together in the one hole?

Here are my tank details just in case:

120cm x 46cm x 46cm, DIY CO2 (~15mg/l), 5dKH, 5dGH, pH 7.0, FE 0.05 (lowered
due to algae problems, plants were already starting to rott before this) 2.2
wpg @ 10hr photo period, laterite in the bottom 1/3 of 4" 1-3mm gravel
substrate, 2 drops per day of Duplaplant 24.

Any tips/advice?

Thanks in advance,