EI Dosing AND root ferts? - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-25-2010, 07:12 PM Thread Starter
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EI Dosing AND root ferts?

I looked around a bit, but couldn't find any opinions/answers:

For those of you who use the EI method, do you also use root fertilizers? Is it necessary? Optional? Bad?

Thanks!

65g planted tank - 200W heat - PC 192W/6700K - Eheim 2217 - Pressurized CO2 - EI Dosing
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post #2 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-25-2010, 07:48 PM
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root tabs are recommended for a planted aquarium.
aquariumplantsdotcom sells them and i have read good reviews from other members

i use plant jobes w/ no issues , but some people are against it.

i use them for my crypts, swords and echinordorus sp.
you can get 50 for a dollar. NPK sticks at walmart.
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post #3 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-25-2010, 08:49 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the input, but the question I pose is if people who use the EI (Estimative Index) method of dosing ALSO use root tabs. Or does the EI method eliminate the need for root tabs?

I too like ap.com's root ferts. I've been using them till now with great results.

65g planted tank - 200W heat - PC 192W/6700K - Eheim 2217 - Pressurized CO2 - EI Dosing
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post #4 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-25-2010, 08:52 PM
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Im am on EI.
I use root tabs on my bigger swords and plants I want to target feed.

I would say thay are optional.
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post #5 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-26-2010, 12:10 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Franzi View Post
Thanks for the input, but the question I pose is if people who use the EI (Estimative Index) method of dosing ALSO use root tabs. Or does the EI method eliminate the need for root tabs?

I too like ap.com's root ferts. I've been using them till now with great results.
Optional, but wise to use an enriched sediment like ADA AS, or mineralized soil (it need not be top soil or bought from a garden store/nursery etc) or worm castings is anothe rpopular proven method.

This is wise because folks go away for a few days or forget to dose here and there and this adds plenty if nutrients for a long time.

It's not for certain species of plants, I wish folks would get away from thinking that way, all aquatic plants can live and grow very well in water column only dosing. Some/most can take up nutrients via the roots.

Big root systems do not imply uptake via the roots, they are mostly storage organs, like potatoes, or Taro etc in aquatic plant species, and most like swords and Crypts come from flowing rivers, tidal and streams. They need roots to remain anchored and they need a root system for low dry season water when they flower.

If you have a strong response from adding nutrients, it's more likely a lack of consistent dosing to the water column.

Still, using both locations is wisest and gives the most effective management for nutrients, and once added, enriched sediments are really no work at all.

They last for years also, they mostly decline in N over time. The remainder of nutrients last for perhaps a decade.

I do EI and use ADA As on all my tanks for the most part.

Results speak for themselves: the lack of algae and the ability to easily grow any species. You CAN MODIFY EI also, and reduce the amounts, ADA pretty much does this in some set ups. They also use lower light than you might think also. So lower light, good CO2, consistent water column dosing, Sediment based ferts and good water changes, general care will make a good management method.

I use some nice white sand and EI since the soils and colors do not match the aesthetics of the sand colors. But given a choice, most likely should use a soil with nutrients.

Water column + sediment work synergistically.

Regards,
Tom Barr

Regards,
Tom Barr




Regards,
Tom Barr
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post #6 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-26-2010, 01:28 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you very much for the well written and informative response.

65g planted tank - 200W heat - PC 192W/6700K - Eheim 2217 - Pressurized CO2 - EI Dosing
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post #7 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-26-2010, 03:55 PM
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Here's a few examples using both and EI alone:

No sediment nutrients


Sediment nutrients + EI



Regards,
Tom Barr




Regards,
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post #8 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-26-2010, 04:46 PM
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Not to hop on another person thread. So please forgive me.

But I have read about using worm casings. How does one aquire such a thing?
You see I am trying to setup a (125 gallon) new tank with 156 T5-HO and would like to avoid always having to be religous about daily or weekly dosing. I was going to use root tabs and I have 150 lbs of Flourite lying around. So if there is something to ad to substrate to help would be awesome.
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post #9 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-26-2010, 05:19 PM Thread Starter
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Nice pics Tom, both tanks look great

odie, I don't care about thread-jacking, but at least try to keep the subject matter similar just for the sake of other people who are interested in EI + root ferts.

65g planted tank - 200W heat - PC 192W/6700K - Eheim 2217 - Pressurized CO2 - EI Dosing
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post #10 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-26-2010, 05:26 PM
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I dosed EI, had ADA AS Ammazonia AND used root tabs. When I was dosing Seachem root tabs I believe the extra Fe was appreciated by my swords. IMO it will ony make thing grow better/faster/stronger.


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post #11 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-26-2010, 05:38 PM
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Quote:
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Not to hop on another person thread. So please forgive me. But I have read about using worm casings. How does one aquire such a thing?
Try your local landscape supplier or big box garden center. They usually carry worm castings as an organic supplement.

One source, if you can't find it locally, is
http://www.vermiculture.com/store_soil_builder.html

Locally it will cost a lot less.
post #12 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-26-2010, 07:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by odie View Post
Not to hop on another person thread. So please forgive me.

But I have read about using worm casings. How does one aquire such a thing?
You see I am trying to setup a (125 gallon) new tank with 156 T5-HO and would like to avoid always having to be religous about daily or weekly dosing. I was going to use root tabs and I have 150 lbs of Flourite lying around. So if there is something to ad to substrate to help would be awesome.
Yes, they work very well as does MTS and ADA AS and various other macro rich sediments, I use clay loams from the delta here, no mineralization needed and it's extremely similar to ADA AS other than sizing and form.

You can use the same approach to WC's as to soils, boil it for 10-15 minutes and then use vs 2-3 weeks, both do the same thing as far the useful part for aquariums, conversion of the OM and oxidation of very labile NH4 to NO3.

Bacteria wise, time will achieve the same end result in the same time frame after 3 weeks using either method.

So no gain offered there.

You can go a few ways, root tabs or spikes, etc, "ice mud cubes" add specific regions, but an entire sediment made from that is nicer IME.

Regards,
Tom Barr




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post #13 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-26-2010, 07:57 PM
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Originally Posted by Franzi View Post
Nice pics Tom, both tanks look great

odie, I don't care about thread-jacking, but at least try to keep the subject matter similar just for the sake of other people who are interested in EI + root ferts.
Basically it's a wiser choice no matter what dosing you do to the water column. Many that are scaredy cats and folks that dose leaner find huge gains since they where running things so lean prior. Now the limiting effects are removed so growth increases a great deal. They think it's some "miracle".

It's not, it's just the sum total of the nutrients.
Lean water column only, vs lean water column + rich "excess" sediments. the total supply is much higher now. there's a great fear in the water column, but curiously that same fear is out the window with sediments for many.

With EI, it's pretty close to non limiting for the water column, so there's less effect, but it makes for easier management and back up supply, also, plants do not need to translocate any nutrients anywhere since both locations have non limiting nutrients.

If you want to modify EI and reduce it down slowly and watch plants, to reduce % weekly water changes or skip a week or two, this can be done much easier without affecting growth also.

With non limiting water column ferts, you also have less draw from the sediments, so the sediments last longer over time and are less depleted.

I find it tough to support 100% water column or 100% sediment only methods.

There's just no good reason to do one, when both works well/better and offers the benefits of each location and without the trade offs.

I can hop around on one leg, but why when I have two legs?
Just because I can and it works?

Sadly, some would argue that logic.

Regards,
Tom Barr




Regards,
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