How to tell deficiency - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 01-29-2013, 07:06 AM Thread Starter
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How to tell deficiency

Ok so instead of going the dry ferts route I got flourish instead. I'm gonna dose half of what they say to use to start since its a low tech tank and I want slow steady growth BUT my question is how do I know what I need? I don't know what minerals and stuff are already in my city water. I bought NPK and trace from seachem but if I have as an example potassium in my water Already I don't wanna overdose. I've tried contacting my BPW but can't get through to the right people. Any fool proof way to tell if I need all 4 things? Planning on dosing once a week
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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 01-29-2013, 07:40 AM
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If you are only going to dose once per week, there is no way you will overdose.

Commercial fertilizers are mostly water as well, so there is another layer of "security," if you want to call it that.

If you want to check your levels, just buy a phosphate and nitrate test kit.

Potassium is very difficult to overdose on (and you will run into other problems by that point), so there is no need to test for it.

Anthony

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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 01-29-2013, 11:42 AM Thread Starter
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I have a nitrate kit but I've never seen a phosphate kit
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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 01-29-2013, 02:30 PM
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The same company that makes your Nitrate test kit makes a Phosphate test kit. Buy it, make a reference solution to test the accuracy of your test kit and then have at it. If you search the forum you will find posts on how to make a reference solution. You will need a scale though.

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I have a nitrate kit but I've never seen a phosphate kit
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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 01-29-2013, 02:32 PM Thread Starter
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Yeah I don't have a scale. And the only one I have available to me is a shipping scale at work and it only goes down to the 10ths of lbs. but ok ok look into the phosphate test kit. I just dosed them I have their lights come on at 10am and I was told its best to fertilize just before the sun comes up so to speak. I dosed exactly what the bottles said except some say twice a week etc I'm only doing all of them once a week. Just did NPK ill do the trace in a few hours
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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 01-29-2013, 09:01 PM
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Here are some values to shoot for, depending on the types of plants you have. Some faster growing stems like more Nitrate (i.e. Stargrass), and Anubias are phosphate hogs:
Nitrate: 5-20 ppm
Phosphate 1-3 ppm

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Originally Posted by Colorblizzle View Post
Yeah I don't have a scale. And the only one I have available to me is a shipping scale at work and it only goes down to the 10ths of lbs. but ok ok look into the phosphate test kit. I just dosed them I have their lights come on at 10am and I was told its best to fertilize just before the sun comes up so to speak. I dosed exactly what the bottles said except some say twice a week etc I'm only doing all of them once a week. Just did NPK ill do the trace in a few hours
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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old 01-29-2013, 09:10 PM Thread Starter
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Ok. My plants are rotala indica cryptocoryne wendtii and anubias nana. I'm gonna get a marineland hidden LED for the front and eventually get dwarf chain sword and ludwigia depends as well. And maybe water sprite
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