Iron Tablets - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-24-2017, 12:20 PM Thread Starter
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Iron Tablets

I recently visited a long time fish/plant keeper. He asked me if I had any red leaved plants and if they were doing ok. I told him they were ok but not great, He gave me a dozen iron tablets that he bought from the local store. Told me to put them 2 -3 " away from the plant that I wanted to have a brighter red and it will bring out the color.

I have no reason to doubt him as his plants are incredible. I did wonder what others might think of this method of bringing out the color in their plants?

Thanks in advance

SD

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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-24-2017, 03:00 PM
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Iron has very little to do with making plant more red. As far as I know it actually has more to do with making them green then red. If you are deficient in iron what you will see is chlorosis which would cause the plants to look pale or white. In this case adding more iron would cause the plant to turn greener.

This is a common misconception, because iron is red so it must make plants red, but unfortunately it just isnt true. The best known ways to increase the redness of plants is to increase light. Limiting nitrogen will also do it, but that comes with other issues.

Thanks
Colin / NilocG
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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-24-2017, 03:03 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by nilocg View Post
Iron has very little to do with making plant more red. As far as I know it actually has more to do with making them green then red. If you are deficient in iron what you will see is chlorosis which would cause the plants to look pale or white. In this case adding more iron would cause the plant to turn greener.

This is a common misconception, because iron is red so it must make plants red, but unfortunately it just isnt true. The best known ways to increase the redness of plants is to increase light. Limiting nitrogen will also do it, but that comes with other issues.

Thanks
Colin / NilocG

Hi Colin

Thanks for the prompt reply this is exactly what I needed to know, being a newcomer to the planted tank scenario this is a great help.

Thanks again

SD

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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-24-2017, 03:40 PM
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I have noticed also that CO2 or carbon supplement's help .
In my Non CO2 injected tanks I can add daily dose of Metricide 14 and coax a little more red from plants , and can only imagine CO2 injection would produce even better result's.
I can almost see the Metricide's effect wear off six hours into photo period.
Can also make plant's appear a bit more red if they are so inclined by adding some pink bulbs in combination with daylight bulbs.
Doesn't make the red plant's any healthier ,just makes them appear a bit more red.
Also seems to me that plant's never look as red as they do right at first light from the CO2 they expel at night and or from small level's produced naturally through fish respiration and biological activity at/in the substrate.
Recall Tom Barr once saying that the CO2 which is naturally produced, is gobbled up by plant's within the first hour of lighting period.
Indicator plant's that I, observe for their red coloring are Echinodorus Red Flame along with Kliener Bar (sp) and ludwigia repens.
Don't think there will ever be substitute for the gas if is truly red's that one want's to see.
For me,I am happy with the low tech method and the Metricide which produces a little more red from the plant's.
Gonna retire next year and maybe give the gas a go then.
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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-24-2017, 03:56 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by roadmaster View Post
I have noticed also that CO2 or carbon supplement's help .
In my Non CO2 injected tanks I can add daily dose of Metricide 14 and coax a little more red from plants , and can only imagine CO2 injection would produce even better result's.
I can almost see the Metricide's effect wear off six hours into photo period.
Can also make plant's appear a bit more red if they are so inclined by adding some pink bulbs in combination with daylight bulbs.
Doesn't make the red plant's any healthier ,just makes them appear a bit more red.
Also seems to me that plant's never look as red as they do right at first light from the CO2 they expel at night and or from small level's produced naturally through fish respiration and biological activity at/in the substrate.
Recall Tom Barr once saying that the CO2 which is naturally produced, is gobbled up by plant's within the first hour of lighting period.
Indicator plant's that I, observe for their red coloring are Echinodorus Red Flame along with Kliener Bar (sp) and ludwigia repens.
Don't think there will ever be substitute for the gas if is truly red's that one want's to see.
For me,I am happy with the low tech method and the Metricide which produces a little more red from the plant's.
Gonna retire next year and maybe give the gas a go then.
How do you add the Metricide, dilute or neat? My tank is a 48 gallon, with a very low bioload. One LED ($12 from Wally world so not expecting a lot) and two older T8's.

Filtration is two Penguin 350 HOB's.

I am hoping to include DIY CO2 to the mix this weekend.

Thanks for the input!

SD.

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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-24-2017, 04:07 PM
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I use the Metricide 14 (pitch the small bottle of activator) straight.
15 ML a day in 80 gal tank (prolly closer to 75 gal of water)
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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-24-2017, 04:11 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by roadmaster View Post
I use the Metricide 14 (pitch the small bottle of activator) straight.
15 ML a day in 80 gal tank (prolly closer to 75 gal of water)
Do you measure it with a syringe?

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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-24-2017, 04:25 PM
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Turkey baster that has ML marks on the side of it.
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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-24-2017, 04:29 PM Thread Starter
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Turkey baster that has ML marks on the side of it.
So given my tank is a 48 gallon would you suggest 10 ml?

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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-24-2017, 04:34 PM
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Cannot say ,for I had to do some searching to find what other's with my size tank were using and took a fair bit of searching.
Googled.. "Metricide in planted aquariums" and went from there.
Do be warned that the metricide need's to be handled with care and kept away from pet's,children.
For what it's worth,I have seen no ill effects with fishes or cherry shrimps I keep with the use of the stuff.
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post #11 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-24-2017, 04:57 PM Thread Starter
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I found this site https://www.healthykin.com//p-4355-m...8aAuakEALw_wcB when doing the Google search, it doesn't have the 14 on it, I wondered if it is the same? The price looks very competitive I do not see a shipping calculator so I sent them an email for a shipping estimate.

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