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Re: This may be the wrong place to ask this question but . . .

In a message dated 8/31/03 2:31:14 AM Pacific Daylight Time, 
Aquatic-Plants-Owner at actwin_com writes:

> You don't say anything about lighting in the tank but I am assuming that 
> you
> have the regulation one or two tubes for a fish tank.  

Sorry, I know I should have mentioned that!  DUH!!!  It's an Eclipse tank 
with two two-year-old 15W T8 bulbs.  I know they're old, but didn't think that 
would matter with my plastic "plants".

> The dark algae you are accumulating is probably either brown diatomaceous 
> or green spot that has built up and in layers tends to look dark brown or 
> black.  If its brown algae its soft and comes off easily by gently rubbing the 
> plants but to be
> honest, IME if its brown your plec should be getting rid.  I suspect its
> layers of the green spot you have on the glass.  

From what you say, I suspect, too, that it's the darned green algae!  I've 
never seen the plec on the "plants"  He's either on the grass, the driftwood, 
the substrate, or the zucchini.  

> You will have to scrub each leaf with an abrasive pan scraper or algae pad 
> - good luck!  

There's no way!  There may be thousands of individual leaves in there!  I'd 
rather replace them with a new plastic plant with larger leaves that might be 
easier to clean; One of these mimics rotala; the other, stargrass.

You could try soaking the plants in a bucket of mild bleach solution (not in 
the tank 
> :-))but thoroughly rinse and soak the plants afterwards in lots of fresh
> water - this was an old remedy for black algae - you will find references
> and advice on the Krib.

I think I'll take one of them out this afternoon and give that a go -- see 
what happens.  

> Why don't you get some more bogwood and use lots of java fern. 

Becaise they EAT Java Fern right down to the roots -- not the rhizome, but 
the ROOTS!  

> Simply tie it to the bog wood and it will quickly root over it - the leaves 
> will go
> black over time but you can chop them out allowing fresh ones to show
> through.  Its a very robust plant and impossible to kill - survives low
> light, works better with a little CO2 but just don't plant it in the
> gravel - it hates it.
> Good luck
> Matthew

Thanks very much, Matthew.  All contributions are graciously accepted :)  Now 
. . . off to the patio with the bleach bottle and the rotala looking plant.  
More later . . . 

Growing old is inevitable; growing UP is optional.

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