Re:Swords in Hard water

Karen Randall wrote:

>Anyone out there growing Swords in hard water?  Anyone have
>them doing well without soil or peat?

About two weeks ago I purchased a "red melon sword" (E. osiris??) from the
local pet shop. It's home is a 55gal with a substrate of 2" of gravel, a
layer of Tetra Initial, (one box, approx. 250g), and another 2" layer of
gravel, all over a UGF plate run in reverse with two Hagen 402 powerheads.
It has grown three new leaves (beatiful reddish ones), much longer than the
smaller green ones it had when I bought it (I'm assumming it was grown
emersed?). Root development seems very good. (when I planted it the crown
was about 1/4" above the gravel. It has since "pulled itself down" so that
the crown touches the gravel.) The tank is lighted with the "el-cheapo"
shop light with two 40watt Osram Designer 50 tubes and two 15 watt
"aquarilux" bulbs ( I gotta replace those one of these days!)

My water comes out of the tap at:
        GH - 17 degrees
        KH - 8 degrees
        pH - near 8 (!!)

The tank has stabilized at GH about 15, KH about 6, and pH of 7.4 (all per
Tetra test kits). 20% water changes are performed at least once every two
weeks adding only Amquel and Tetra Flora pride as per directions.

Initially, the sword seems to be doing well. Hopefully this will continue,
It looks like it will be a gorgeous plant when those little green leaves
are all finally replaced!

Tim Sanstead
CS major - North Dakota State University
Fargo, ND

"Trying to enjoy the sun between thunderstorms, because you know it'll be
too damn cold in another three months!"