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Plant meltdown :(


Three days ago I decide to re-fit my 29 gallon tank into an environment
more suitable for plants. Right now it's something like this:
- 1.5" of natural clay (kitty litter) mixed with some Osmocote pellets.
- 1" of thin gravel.
- 3 x 20W lights
- DIY CO2 injection at full production
- Second Nature Whisper power filter (maybe not the best for plants, 
  but OK I think--it's what I had before)
- PH = 6.5 (because of the CO2, otherwise around 7.1 or 7.2)
- Temperature of 72-74F
- Heavily planted with some plants that were there before the remodeling
  and some new ones (vallisneria, swords, rotalas, java ferns, crypts...)
  After I was done planting there was no more room anywhere else for more

I was hoping this was going to be IT and be my most successful tank 
so far since it seemed to have all the requirements for good development.

Alas, this is not to be so. The day after I planted the tank, I noticed
that some of the leaves were starting to be all mushy. I figured it was
normal with some of the weakest leaves for the uprooting or bringing
them from the LFS. I was also surprised that there were no O2 bubbles
on the plants at all yet.

It has been there for three days, and it's clear it's in its way to the
compost pile. There are still no O2 bubbles (!!!!), and the plant meltdown
continues at full speed. And it's only been 3 days! 

I am completely baffled by this. I don't expect to be able to save the
plants, but at least I would like to learn something from this. Do you
have any idea of what I might have done wrong? Since this happened so 
quickly I pretty much rule out nutrients, light, or CO2 problems.
Could it be that the plants got "chilled" when they were out of the tank
for about 4-5 hours? I placed them in a bucked filled with tank water
in a room around 65-70F. If you have any suggestions, please let me know.
Maybe that way I won't kill my next batch of plants :(


llopis at zonker_ecs.umass.edu