fw: re: Need to rescue an E. hormanii

Here goes again. From George Booth, this time.

Shaji Bhaskar                                              bhaskar at bnr_ca
BNR, 35 Davis Dr., RTP, NC 27709, USA                      (919) 991 7125

---forwarded message---->

To: Aquatic-Plants at actwin_com
Cc: karla at hpmtlgb1_lvld.hp.com, krogers at canopus_sim.es.com
Subject: Need to rescue an E. hormanii
Date: Wed, 21 Jun 1995 09:38:45 -0600
Message-Id: <3318.803749125@hpmtlgb1.lvld.hp.com>
From: George Booth <booth at hpmtlgb1_lvld.hp.com>

> From: Keith Rogers <krogers at canopus_sim.es.com>
> I have to let out my dirty little secret.  I'm looking for help to
> save an E. horemanii plant which has much sentimental value.

I think I can help on this one.  Or at least, prattle on for awhile. 

> I gave a few away, gave a couple back to George ...  After a few
> months, though, they started getting "chlorotic" in that the veins
> stayed the nice dark red (it's the red variety) but the area between
> started going green, then almost transluscent ... The old leaves are
> starting to decay now and I'm afraid of losing the plant.

The seven plants you gave back to us are all doing wonderfully in both
the 90 gallon "Dupla" tank and the 85 gallon UGF tank.  They have
completely recovered from their original "odd" appearance. 
> ... CO2 injection, Dupla tablets at water change, 3 drops daily, 2
> wide spec fl bulbs.  Main thing to note is no laterite in the
> substrate and no heating cables.  A submersible heater keeps water
> temp at 76.

Both tanks are at 78 F, one has MH, one has FL, both get Dupla tablets
and drops.  One has coils and laterite, one has an UGF with no laterite.

> The lack of laterite might be contributing to poor leaf formation, but
> I think abismal circulation and/or cold feet are more likely causes.
> Other species grew well all year long.

Since the plant gets a humongous rhizome, it probably needs good
substrate conditions and is sensitive to poor circulation or nutrient
depletion in the substrate or cold feet or all of the above.
> Questions: Have others had similar situations and what cured the bad
> leaves?  

We thought it was just a matter of having the right nutrients, but you
are using Dupla stuff, so that's not it.  You have a low bioload in
the tank; maybe your nitrates aren't high enough?  Ours run 10-20
ppm.  Didn't I hear somewhere that Echinodorus like a little nitrate?
> Do you have a feel for the relative importance of substrate
> circulation vs laterite vs warm feet, etc?  

Laterite doesn't seem critical since the UGF tank doesn't have any.  
Of course, mulm could serve the same purpose. 

Both tanks have substrate circulation.  Both tanks have the substrate
at the tank water temp, at least. 

Have you pulled up the plants to see how the roots are doing?  That
might be an indicator of substrate health.  We pull ours up every 
month or so so the roots don't get too firmly embedded in the heating
coils or UGF plate.  We plan to take them to the October CAS plant
auction and buy a new car with the proceeds :-). 

Maybe we'll put the biggest of the babies in the 120 and sell the
MotherPlant at the auction and buy two new cars!  

> Comments welcome; thanks for any help,

I would go with sone kind of substrate circulation.