Java Fern

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Don Danko
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Java Fern

Post by Don Danko » Fri Nov 15, 2013 8:16 am

What is the best regimen for growing Java Fern? I have had plants in a 125 gallon for a couple of years and they cycle between growing well and then shrinking down to non robust and small algae covered plants. The tank has a crushed coral substrate, tufa rocks to which the plants are attached. I use T8 lighting, one daylight bulb and one plant bulb, a 6700 I believe. I may have the lights on too long, keeping them on from 7am to 9/10 pm. I have the tank on a water change system that brings a small amount of carbon filtered city water in twice daily. There is a good deal of green algae growth that even grows on the crushed coral. I will try to post a pic later.

Any suggestions?

Thanks!
Tanganyikans, other Cichlids and Catfish

Lee Nuttall
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Joined: Sun Apr 20, 2008 5:14 pm
Location: South Staffordshire UK

Re: Java Fern

Post by Lee Nuttall » Fri Nov 15, 2013 9:06 am

I think there's a misconception when growing java fern correctly as most people generally suggest light and water. Java fern will grow steady under low light conditions, strong light isn't essential.

I think what is happening within your own tank is that they are burning themselves out due to too much lighting period. If you subject java fern to strong longer periods of light, then you must dose with co2 or some form of fertilization at least. Java fern pearl very well when subjected to co2, a good sign that co2 benefits there potential growth. If co2 dosing isn't suitable then offer lower light levels over shorter periods. You should offer Java fern lighting periods no longer than 8hrs a day, any longer, then you will certainly have problems with algae consuming the plant!

Of interest to anyone else using Java fern...they will need to be attached to either rock or wood, planting them into the substrate will eventually see them melt away and die!

Lee.

Don Danko
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Re: Java Fern

Post by Don Danko » Fri Nov 15, 2013 12:05 pm

Thanks, Lee. I plan to reset the timer on that tank tonight accordingly. Will CO2 dosing have any affect on Tanganyikan fishes?
Regards,
Don
Tanganyikans, other Cichlids and Catfish

Lee Nuttall
Posts: 428
Joined: Sun Apr 20, 2008 5:14 pm
Location: South Staffordshire UK

Re: Java Fern

Post by Lee Nuttall » Fri Nov 15, 2013 12:36 pm

I believe over time CO2 can lower the pH of your water, so may have an effect on Lake Tanganyikan fishes.

Don Danko
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Re: Java Fern

Post by Don Danko » Sat Nov 16, 2013 4:58 pm

Thanks much, Lee. Is using an algicide good or bad to use while reducing the light on time?
Don
Tanganyikans, other Cichlids and Catfish

Lee Nuttall
Posts: 428
Joined: Sun Apr 20, 2008 5:14 pm
Location: South Staffordshire UK

Re: Java Fern

Post by Lee Nuttall » Sun Nov 17, 2013 4:09 am

It depends if you want to try to completely eliminate algae growth...I personally don't think this is a good idea. I'm not really a fan of adding chemicals to help solve problems as there effectiveness can be questionable...you could be creating other problems? I think reducing your light output and duration is the best way to go. :)

Lee.

Don Danko
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Posts: 2028
Joined: Sun Jul 31, 2005 4:11 pm

Re: Java Fern

Post by Don Danko » Mon Nov 18, 2013 8:57 am

Thanks for your guidance, Lee. I reset the timer to about 5 hours a day and replaced the 2 bulb fixture with a single bulb. I did decide to dose with algicide to get a quicker cleanup, but won't use from here on out. Also removed the heavy algae growth from the gravel, hydrocleaned and then removed as much of the algae growth from the leaves of the java fern and crypts. Going to get some fresh plants to introduce as well and then let "nature" take its course. Wish me luck!
Tanganyikans, other Cichlids and Catfish

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