Should I even be dosing water column ferts for this tank? - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old 01-03-2013, 09:36 PM Thread Starter
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Should I even be dosing water column ferts for this tank?

Here is my tank. Aqueon evolve 8 (actually 6.5 gallons) 2.5 - 3 (in the back) substrate (eco complete with root tabs and seachem tabs), pieces of driftwood with several anubias nana petite and one anubias nana, a grouping of java fern. Then I have about 30 or more pygmy chain sword (which currently looks like crud, very tall because of the old lighting)

I upgraded the lighting to the fugeray 12" fixture which should be doing 35-40 par at the substrate possibly more or less

I do excel everyday and flourish once a week

I do 50% water change every week.

The tank is a bit well stocked. with 6 very small neon blue rasboras, a group of 4 pygmy cories, 1 small honey gourami, 1 zebra otto.

I feed daily. I run carbon, have lots of bio media (aquaclear sponges, ceramic rings).

I want to get better growth out of my pygmy chain sword.

I am starting to see a bit of algae (not hideous).
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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old 01-03-2013, 09:51 PM
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Perhaps invest in a Nitrate and Phosphate liquid test kit. Even if not extremely precise, it's a good exercise to find out where the levels are at and how they develop over time. It will tell you w your Nitrates are out, and help you to get them to 10-20 ppm. Etc.

There are just too many variables for us to tell you "yes" or "no". Your tap water parameters, plant density, stocking/feeding levels all affect that.
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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old 01-03-2013, 11:06 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Wasserpest View Post
Perhaps invest in a Nitrate and Phosphate liquid test kit. Even if not extremely precise, it's a good exercise to find out where the levels are at and how they develop over time. It will tell you w your Nitrates are out, and help you to get them to 10-20 ppm. Etc.

There are just too many variables for us to tell you "yes" or "no". Your tap water parameters, plant density, stocking/feeding levels all affect that.
Gotcha TYVM for your help. I have an api nitrate test kit. Will have to invest in a po4 kit.

I know the TDS is around 150ppm Will have to check the GH and all that other good stuff.

I guess I was thinking EI type dosing + flourish.
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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old 01-03-2013, 11:24 PM
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EI works very well if you have a lot of plant mass and a generous injection of CO2. It might still work if you scale it down, but you have some ferts in your substrate, and the plants you list are not extremely fast growers, so...

Me, I am curious myself, so I used some (few) test kits for a while, until I knew what was going on in my tanks, and how much nutrients I needed to add.
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post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old 01-03-2013, 11:54 PM
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If you are running CO2 as well, then i reccomend water column dosing. Limiting nutrients will only encourage algae. Read up on EI. An accurate PAR reading would guide you the most but, unless you have low PAR, EI + CO2 is going to save you a lot of algae battles.
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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old 01-04-2013, 01:06 PM Thread Starter
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If you are running CO2 as well, then i reccomend water column dosing. Limiting nutrients will only encourage algae. Read up on EI. An accurate PAR reading would guide you the most but, unless you have low PAR, EI + CO2 is going to save you a lot of algae battles.
This is an excel based tank. I was going off this guide:

http://www.sudeepmandal.com/hobbies/...-planted-tank/
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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old 01-04-2013, 01:10 PM Thread Starter
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EI works very well if you have a lot of plant mass and a generous injection of CO2. It might still work if you scale it down, but you have some ferts in your substrate, and the plants you list are not extremely fast growers, so...

Me, I am curious myself, so I used some (few) test kits for a while, until I knew what was going on in my tanks, and how much nutrients I needed to add.
Gotcha! TYVM! You have been very helpful! I have the API Nitrate kit. I should probably get a GH test kit as well as a Po4 kit.

Would the api po4 kit be enough? Should I buy a salifert po4 instead? I have immediate access to a API p04 kit whereas the salifert I will have to drive an hour away to get or order online.
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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old 01-04-2013, 05:15 PM Thread Starter
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Okay so say I did Co2, what is the cheapest route and how do I keep it from killing my fish?

Would the plants I have even benefit from it?

My lighting is 38-42 PAR at 10" according to this: Finnex FugeRay Product Review
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post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old 01-05-2013, 05:10 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Wasserpest View Post
EI works very well if you have a lot of plant mass and a generous injection of CO2. It might still work if you scale it down, but you have some ferts in your substrate, and the plants you list are not extremely fast growers, so...

Me, I am curious myself, so I used some (few) test kits for a while, until I knew what was going on in my tanks, and how much nutrients I needed to add.
Thanks again. So here are some readings on my tap water:

Po4 (api test kit) 0.5ppm
KH = 40-50 (tetra strip)
GH = 150
Nitrate (api) 0

Hopefully that gives you what you need tyvm (or me)!
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post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old 01-07-2013, 02:33 PM Thread Starter
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I tested po4 in my tank and it is pretty high about 2.0ppm. I guess that is probably too high for a planted tank. I am guessing this is a bi-product of feeding my fish.
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post #11 of 12 (permalink) Old 01-07-2013, 02:43 PM
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Nitrates @ zero = bad. If true, this will lead to terrible plant growth and algae.

There are 3 macros (some count a few more)

Nitrates (NO3)
Phosphates (PO4)
Potassium (K)

All 3 are required in "relatively" high amounts, although more <> better. Looks like you should buy a pound of KNO3 and one of K2SO4 (for potassium) since you have enough PO4.

Then start adding KNO3 in small amounts and see how the tank reacts after a couple of weeks. Your PO4 is fine, and don't worry too much about GH and such.
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post #12 of 12 (permalink) Old 01-07-2013, 05:57 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wasserpest View Post
Nitrates @ zero = bad. If true, this will lead to terrible plant growth and algae.

There are 3 macros (some count a few more)

Nitrates (NO3)
Phosphates (PO4)
Potassium (K)

All 3 are required in "relatively" high amounts, although more <> better. Looks like you should buy a pound of KNO3 and one of K2SO4 (for potassium) since you have enough PO4.

Then start adding KNO3 in small amounts and see how the tank reacts after a couple of weeks. Your PO4 is fine, and don't worry too much about GH and such.
Actually that was for the tap water itself. The tank has 5-10ppm nitrate currently.

Well I have kno3. I bought a pound of Kh2Po4 for potassium but I am guessing since its potassium phosphate = bad and the K2So4 is better for my circumstance.
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