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Java Ferns and Trace Elements

I have some Java fers and they are attached to a log(tied).  The leaves
are turning brown and dieing.  I have searched the archives and the most
likely cause for this that I have seen is trace elements or nitrogen.
What is the easiest way to add these.  My LFS has said that I should add
Instant Ocean as it has trace elements in it.  While it does have trace
elements it is still sodium that I do not want to add to my tank.  Is
there an easier way.  I would like to know a product that I might be
able to get at one of my LFS so that I can do it this weekend.  Also if
anyone has any suggestions as to why they are disintergrating I would be
more then happy to listen to your comments and suggestions.  I am ruling
out the light part of it as the plants are in the top third of a 55 gal.
and not to far away from flourescent grow bulbs.
Rhode Island