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Re: 2x55W PC Cooking Plant Leaves

Just a comment on:
>My swords are throwing new shoots much faster, but
>instead of going half way like the old leaves, they go
>straight up to the top of the tank, and gets burned by
>the PC heat in no time.
A few years ago I set up a 125 gallon tank thought I needed some large
plants to fill it in so I researched the Baensch Atlas, and a few other
sources, to find out how large a Radican sword and an Aponogeton
rigidifolius would grow. Well I got more than I bargained for. The tank had
a standard 6 foot x 1.5 foot base and was open top with 2 x 175 W metal
halide lamps positioned about 18 inches above the tank. I knew the Radican
sword would grow out of the water but I did not think it would grow nearly
four feet tall. It insisted on shooting leaves straight toward the MH bulbs
and, of course, they got fried every time. So, I had to move the leaf stalk
(petiole) outside the light hood as soon as it was attempting to grow up
inside it. This did solve the problem of cooking the plant leaves but it
looked a little strange with the plant growing well past the light fixture.

The Aponogeton grew leaves that were just short of three feet long and it
looked very cramped in an 18 inch wide tank that was only 18 inches tall
from substrate surface to water surface (so much for the species size
guide-lines; maybe they were referring to the plant as it grows in its
natural habitat?). I also had an Echinodorus osirus that stayed submerged
but, again, grew leaves close to three feet long x 6 inches wide and so was
simply overpowering a 75 gallon tank. I would remove 4 or 5 leaves every
week and the plant still dominated the tank excessively. Same thing
happened with an Aponogeton undulatus in this 75 gallon tank. Simply made
the tank look like a 10 gallon crammed with too many plants. The only
swords I grow now are the small chain swords. Maybe, when I have the space
for a LARGE tank, I can once again enjoy the swords and Aponogetons.....and
Crinum spp. .....and Jungle Val. .....and...... .
--- Eric