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</DIV><H1>Growing Amazon Swords?</H1><DIV id=Qtextbox><P><STRONG>Author: crashfragment</STRONG><BR><BR>I keep mostly amazonian/south american fish. nearly all my tanks are biotopes of various different habitats...the one thing i cannot crack is amazon swordplants. they never seen to grow for me, the water condition in the tanks is excellent, correct temp, correct ph and hardess (although this varies according to the fish species/habitat i am keeping/replicating), the other plants usually grow well, eg. cabomba, vallis, duckweed, water lettuce and java moss (i know its not south american! i use it to simulate algae clumps). the only thing i haven't tried is a CO2 injector, i'm a-bit skeptical about trying one...the tanks are biotopes, not dutch or amano planted set-ups. i use plants as they would be in the habitats i'm trying to replicate eg. whitewater lakes with no rooted plants, but huge masses of floating plants, blackwater creeks under the rainforest canopy dark with very little plant life but heaps of leaf litter, bright clearwater rivers with thick clumps of rooted plants, and about a million other habitats i'd like to try one day

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Can anyone help? I really want to use amazon swords in some the set-up where they "fit" and i can't

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thanks in advance

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-shaun

</P></DIV><H2>Replies »</H2><DIV id=Atextbox><P><STRONG>Author: nornicle</STRONG><BR><BR>amazon swords (i think) are one the plants that cannot absorb nutrients through their leaves (i.e the water strata) (all the plants you mentioned absorb from the water)

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you need to fertilise the gravel around the roots of the swords

</P></DIV><DIV id=Atextbox><P><STRONG>Author: hungsta</STRONG><BR><BR>pop down to the garden section of ur hardware house and get some fern spikes....shove it in the gravel near the swords and see how it goes.

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Or empire has told me that u can also use clay (digged from the backyard) which is high in iron.

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Goodluck

</P></DIV><DIV id=Atextbox><P><STRONG>Author: Alan Caboolture</STRONG><BR><BR>One, they do not like water movement around thier roots ie U/G filters.

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Two, they like a rich substrate, if your tank is too clean they die off. A deep sand bank and a couple of balls of clay around thier roots.

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Three, they don't like fluro lights natural or incandesant bulbs work Can't advise on M.H.'s as have never used them.

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I plant my swords in squat clay pots with dirty gravel and clay balls and hide the pot with rocks or drift wood. Can't say that I have been 100% successful with all varieties tho.

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Alan

</P></DIV><DIV id=Atextbox><P><STRONG>Author: nornicle</STRONG><BR><BR>I used to keep mine in the circular take away containers, at the bottom I would put 1/2 a fern spike, although I feel they stil have too much phosphates leach initially (maybe i plant them not deep enough)

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</P></DIV><DIV id=Atextbox><P><STRONG>Author: mtchye</STRONG><BR><BR>I have to agree with the root feeding suggestion. Mine do fine in a deep bed of normal fine gravel with the Manutec Fern Spikes bundled into the roots. However I also have one in a tank with laterite mixed in and the big plant is going crazy...

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As far as lighting goes I think that they do appreciate some light - fluoro seems to work fine for me, and sunlight really makes them flower.

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However I do have them in 6x2x2's with only one fluoro on top and they do grow in that. The species may play a part though as the one i have most of and is the big plant that goes crazy reproducing itself is a giant species called cordiflorus I think. Large heart shaped leaves growing up to 3 feet tall.

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I have some other varieties such as the common type and a red type but they seem to be a little more demanding.

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Perhaps try to get a hold of this cordiflorus giant type as it seems to be incredibly hardy to me - growing in my malawi and tang tanks successfully.

</P></DIV><DIV id=Atextbox><P><STRONG>Author: crashfragment</STRONG><BR><BR>thanks guys those suggestions sound great. i might be able to add amazon swords to these biotopes after all. just a couple of questions...what are fern spikes?

can i get them at garden supply centres?

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and does iron or phosphate affect ph or water quality?

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thanks

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-shaun

</P></DIV><DIV id=Atextbox><P><STRONG>Author: emp1re</STRONG><BR><BR>

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u can buy it at woolworth in the gardening section for approx. $2.95.

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it come in a 6-7cm stick form.

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i used this for my amozon sword, and it grow wild and huge (40-45cm size). And it send out runner regularly.

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