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Old 01-28-2011, 06:38 PM   #35
Fat Guy
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Thanks IntrepidAquarist, totally looking forward to your setup.

This morning I noticed some browning on some of the HC leaves near the diffuser and near the glass. Everything is growing very well and I'm not sure if the browning is from:

a. too long of a photoperiod
-yesterday I accidentally had my lights on for 12 hours rather than the 9 hours that I usually run them.

b. nutrient deficiency.
-for the past five days, my nitrite and ammonia levels have been zero so my tank has been showing signs of being cycled. Then it dawned on me that because I've only been dosing potassium and trace elements for the first three weeks, all of the nitrogen was really being supplied by the higher levels of nitrite. So today I tested my nitrate, and my levels were zero. I don't have any inhabitants in the tank. I took the cardinal japonica out and placed him temporarily in my shrimp tank until my solenoid arrives. I know that there are nutrients being supplied via the aquasoil, but having zero nitrates in the water column got me thinking.

So I used the seachem formula to determine dosing of nitrate:

.05(v)(n)=m instead of on the bottle where it reads .25(v)(n)=m

where "v" is volume in gallons, "n" is desired amount of nitrogen in ppm.

I think if my target nitrate levels were 25ppm then I would use the latter equation and change "n" to 25. Would that be correct. The first equation I discovered through researching a post on APC here

so I plugged in the following:

.05(5.5gallons)(5nitrogen)=1.375ml

So I decided to dose 1.5ml of seachem nitrogen in my tank today which should give me just a little bit more than 5ppm nitrogen and is easier for me to measure. Which is not a huge amount, but I'd rather adjust slowly and monitor it than shoot for the moon to get the nitrate levels up to 25ppm. I plan on adding the white clouds by the end of next week which should supply more nitrates to the tank and maybe an otto or two to control the diatoms. Which brings me to:

c. diatoms
-is the browning on the hc leaves actually diatoms. on closer inspection, the browning on the leaves appears slightly fuzzy and on the surface of the leaf. It looks like a topical problem, and not from within. But then again, I'm not 100% sure.

I'm just using deductive reasoning to find the answer to the browning. There were two major changes in the tank. 0 nitrites and 0 nitrates (leading to a nutrient deficiency in the water column) and an accidental prolonged photoperiod. Each probably having something to do with the small change on some of the leaves. I know that the aquasoil is rich in nutrients, but I think that will really become evident once all of the HC starts to deep root into the soil. Right now, I think that some of the HC are benefiting from the substrate, and some haven't gotten to that stage yet. So the addition of nitrate may not be a bad idea now, especially before I put the fish in the tank.

Any thoughts?

best,

el g
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