Causes of Dying Plants That Could Kill Fish

Many aquarium hobbyists find it difficult to maintain healthy, thriving tank plants. This is partly due to the fact that the fish eat the plants and partially because the plants often suck up too much nitrogen and phosphorus from the water which, in turn, depletes oxygen levels. Dead or dying plants can also decompose in the aquarium, further reducing oxygen levels and potentially killing fish. Fortunately, most of the conditions that cause tank plants to die are easy to diagnose and prevent.

One of the most common causes of dying plant is an excess of algae. Algae consume nutrients that are produced by the light source in the aquarium and can coat the leaves of a plant. This clogs the leaves and keeps them from absorbing sunlight, which in turn inhibits photosynthesis and can kill the plant. The best way to prevent algae overgrowth is to perform regular water changes and removing any floating debris from the aquarium.

Too little water can be a problem for plants as well, especially new ones with limited root systems. When a plant is experiencing this issue, it may be necessary to dig down twelve to fifteen inches around the plant to see how wet or dry the soil is. This method will help you to determine if the plant is a goner or if it could still be saved.

Providing the right amount of fertilizer is another way to save your aquarium plant. If a plant hasn’t been fertilized in awhile, it can become malnourished and start to die. This can be done by adding compost or organic fertilizer, such as Dr. Earth’s Liquid Plant Food or the brand’s all-purpose organic fertilizer for all aquarium plants.

If the plant is displaying yellow spots or other signs of being infected with pests, it’s time to use a spray to clean it. This will remove the pests from the plant and keep it looking healthier. If the plant is completely dying, it might be a good idea to remove it from the tank.

Too much carbon dioxide is another reason a plant can begin to die. Plants produce oxygen during the day, but at night they consume oxygen and spare carbon dioxide, which can lower oxygen levels in the tank. If the air pump or air stones aren’t running at night, this can be a serious issue for plants and fish.

Another reason for plant death is herbicide overuse. This is a common problem among pond owners, who may use herbicides to control algae or aquatic weeds in their pond. If this isn’t done properly, the chemicals can enter the water and damage or even kill plants. This is why a pond owner should always read the instructions on the herbicide they’re using and avoid spraying near any plants or pond weeds. This will ensure that the herbicide doesn’t leach into the pond water and cause a fish kill. It’s also important to wear protective gloves when handling herbicides, and never allow them to get on your skin.