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Madagascar Brown Lace


Ever since I was a kid in the sixties
and read about the Madagascar Lace plant
in the "Innes" book, I've wanted try one
out. Well, having re-entered the hobby a
few years ago with plants as my primary
interest, and having had some success
with "easier" species, I thought it was

So, I put this baby in a quart plus
rubbermaid pot with lauterite mix in the
lower third and some Tetra 1-0-25 tabs. 
Then I gave it a central spot in an
established, well planted, CO2 injected,
VHO lit, substrate heated, PMDD fortified
90 gallon with a light fish load.

Well, for the first few weeks it grew fast.
It seemed to put out a new leaf every couple
days! I felt hope of graduating to the next
level of plant keeping.  :)    But . . .

First new leaf growth slowed. Then existing
leaves started developing patches of brown
followed by completed decay of browned
sections. A terrible thing to happen to such
a bueatiful plant. 

What could it be? My algae is minimal (praise
be to the SAE). NO3 is around 5mG/ltr, Fe
around 0.1, PO4 less than .02, pH via CO2 about
6.8 (fluctuates), gH 8ish, carbonate hardness
4ish, CO2 10 mG/ltr ish (fluctuates), 78F. So,
I'm grasping at straws like:

1) My lauterite substrate isn't especially
   rich, ought it be? Maybe the Tetra tabs
   are depleted. I'm considering injecting
   PMDD directly into the substrate via a hypo.
   Would Steve Pushak's "worm casings" help?

2) Maybe I've depleted some nutrient: K
   possibly? I've added 7mG/ltr of K via
   K2SO4 just to see if there is a reaction.

3) Might it not like one of it's neighbors?
   This tank has some Anubas nana, patches
   of "pigmy chain" swords (quadricostatus
   I think), an Amazonicus sword, Bocopa,
   lots O' Zosterfolia, Spiralis val, dwarf Sag,
   an Aponageton boivinianus bought at
   the same time showing similar browning,
   some Willisii crypts (with iron red leaves),
   and a few other odd and ends. 

4) Maybe it's doing one of those strange
   Aponogeton things like going into a
   dormate cycle. Should  I put it in a
   cool basment for awhile?

Please, any expert advice would be most

Puzzled in Pittsburgh - Tim Mullins