What to Dose? Nutrient Deficiency - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 13 (permalink) Old 04-12-2018, 08:06 AM Thread Starter
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What to Dose? Nutrient Deficiency

Hi all,

I'm new to planted tanks and am running a very low tech set up, but will eventually go mid tech and perhaps start running some CO2.

Tank has been running for 7 months: 130L (34.5 Gallon) 90x37x42cm (42cm high)

At the moment I have:
1x Amazon Sword (in tank for 2 weeks)
3x Java Fern (2 weeks - split from 1 plant)
3x Hygrophila corymbosa (I now know these aren't true aquatic plants - been in tank 6-7 months)
1x Banana Plant/Lily (2 weeks)
1x Anubia nana (7 months)

I've taken some photos to see if anyone can identify any nutrient deficiencies. I can perhaps see Magnesium and Potassium defiencies? One of the sword leaves is curving downwards on the tips and edges.

I dose Seachem Comprehensive once a week (about 1/2 to 1 capful) and the sword and Lily have Seachem Root Tabs right next to their roots. These will be replaced every 2-3 months. I also put a couple of teaspoons of calcium powder in the tank every 1-2 weeks to help my Mystery Snail. Use Prime as the water conditioner and sometimes dose excel when I remember.

No CO2 (maybe in the future as I add more plants)
Running the stock LED light that came with the tank (2 strips of white LEDs) however about to buy the Fluval Fresh & Planted 2.0 to future proof myself and will only run it at about 40-50% for the time being. Lights runs for 6 hours daily and about 40cm above top of small gravel substrate.

pH - 7.5
Ammonia - 0
Nitrite - 0
Nitrate - hovers around 20ppm
gH - 6-8dgH (colour change used to be more obvious, now it seems very subtle)
kH - 4dkH
Attached image of water parameters in the town water.
Temp is 25-29C (it gets hot in Australia!)

7x Sterbai Corydoras
8x Pristella Tetras
7x Cherry Barbs (will be getting 1-2 more)
1x Mystery Snail

At least 50% water change each week, sometimes split up into 2 30% water changes. You can see the brown algae (diatoms) has stained the leaves of the Hygrophila, I'm unable to remove the stains. Hopefully the diatoms will die town as the tank matures. Run two HOBs with 1200L/hr output and a sponge filter with a bit of carbon in the hollow centre (not enough to make any real difference).

Is there anything else I should be dosing based on the look of my plants? Some will be acclimatising to the new tank given they've only been in there for 2 weeks. There's definitely some deficiencies there, maybe magnesium and Potassium being the main two.

Should I dose with Seachem Equilibrium or any macros?

Thanks!



















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Last edited by DaleM; 04-12-2018 at 11:11 AM.
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post #2 of 13 (permalink) Old 04-12-2018, 09:51 AM Thread Starter
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@Seattle_Aquarist from my reading I know you're very good at this

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post #3 of 13 (permalink) Old 04-12-2018, 01:03 PM
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Deficiencies can be more than one,and I would try the flourish comprehensive at twice weekly, while maybe looking at macro/micro package of dry fertilizer from Planted Aquarium Fertilizer - Home
Maybe replace root tabs monthly rather than every 2to 3 month's.
Plant's in photo look young,recently planted,and by adding a little of all nutrient's,one is increasing the odd's of good growth while decreasing chances of deficiencies.
The Flourish comprehensive is lacking in some macro nutrient's and IME just barely sustained growth with twice weekly dose and low light /low tech application's.
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post #4 of 13 (permalink) Old 04-12-2018, 01:30 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by roadmaster View Post
Deficiencies can be more than one,and I would try the flourish comprehensive at twice weekly, while maybe looking at macro/micro package of dry fertilizer from Planted Aquarium Fertilizer - Home
Maybe replace root tabs monthly rather than every 2to 3 month's.
Plant's in photo look young,recently planted,and by adding a little of all nutrient's,one is increasing the odd's of good growth while decreasing chances of deficiencies.
The Flourish comprehensive is lacking in some macro nutrient's and IME just barely sustained growth with twice weekly dose and low light /low tech application's.
I'm in Australia, so will cost me an arm and leg to get stuff sent from the US over here, plus our government then slugs tax on top

I will increase the flourish dosing to twice weekly. Would something like this be better? I get most of my supplies from the tech den

https://www.thetechden.com.au/Easy_L...t_p/pro250.htm

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post #5 of 13 (permalink) Old 04-12-2018, 01:33 PM Thread Starter
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Or maybe something like this?

https://www.scottsaustralia.com.au/s...quatic-plants/

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post #6 of 13 (permalink) Old 04-12-2018, 01:45 PM
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Originally Posted by DaleM View Post
I'm in Australia, so will cost me an arm and leg to get stuff sent from the US over here, plus our government then slugs tax on top

I will increase the flourish dosing to twice weekly. Would something like this be better? I get most of my supplies from the tech den

https://www.thetechden.com.au/Easy_L...t_p/pro250.htm

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Need nitrogen and phosphate (key macro nutreints) Not in the product mentioned.
Cannot safely rely on fish waste and or fish food's for nitrogen and phosphate except for low light mosses,fern's,anubia and the like except in low light tanks.
As plant mass hopefully increases,plant's often require more nutrient's.
Especially evident as light energy is increased.
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post #7 of 13 (permalink) Old 04-12-2018, 01:46 PM Thread Starter
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Need nitrogen and phosphate (key macro nutreints) Not in the product mentioned.
Cannot safely rely on fish waste and or fish food's for nitrogen and phosphate except for low light mosses,fern's,anubia and the like except in low light tanks.
As plant mass hopefully increases,plant's often require more nutrient's.
Especially evident as light energy is increased.
No dramas, this one might be a better fit
https://www.scottsaustralia.com.au/s...quatic-plants/

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post #8 of 13 (permalink) Old 04-12-2018, 01:49 PM
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Or maybe something like this?

https://www.scottsaustralia.com.au/s...quatic-plants/

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Yes,this can work as either sprinkling on bottom glass before placing substrate,or freezing some of the pellet's or prill's with some water in ice cube tray, and using them as root tab's.(some moderation experimenting) needed.
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post #9 of 13 (permalink) Old 04-12-2018, 02:13 PM Thread Starter
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Yes,this can work as either sprinkling on bottom glass before placing substrate,or freezing some of the pellet's or prill's with some water in ice cube tray, and using them as root tab's.(some moderation experimenting) needed.
Excellent, that product is more widely available here and is fairly cheap. I'll try putting it in the gravel (well covered) or maybe try the ice cube trick

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post #10 of 13 (permalink) Old 04-12-2018, 06:13 PM
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Hi @DaleM,

Welcome to TPT!

I believe that @roadmaster has done a good job of diagnosing the major issue, lack of macro-nutrients. Seachem Flourish Comprehensive is a good source of micro-nutrients but does not contain a lot of macro-nutrients, good for a low / medium light tank. I agree to up the Seachem Comprehensive to 2X a week but I am not a huge fan of the Osmocote product referenced as a aquarium fertiliizer since 30% - 60% of the product is ammonium nitrate which can be toxic to fish and in my experience leads to algae outbreaks. As an alternate I suggest (all available on Ebay Au) used in conjunction with Seachem Comprehensive:





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post #11 of 13 (permalink) Old 04-13-2018, 03:33 AM Thread Starter
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Hi @DaleM,

Welcome to TPT!

I believe that @roadmaster has done a good job of diagnosing the major issue, lack of macro-nutrients. Seachem Flourish Comprehensive is a good source of micro-nutrients but does not contain a lot of macro-nutrients, good for a low / medium light tank. I agree to up the Seachem Comprehensive to 2X a week but I am not a huge fan of the Osmocote product referenced as a aquarium fertiliizer since 30% - 60% of the product is ammonium nitrate which can be toxic to fish and in my experience leads to algae outbreaks. As an alternate I suggest (all available on Ebay Au) used in conjunction with Seachem Comprehensive:





[
Hi @Seattle_Aquarist

Thank you so much for that, I wasn't aware that JAG Aquatics sold dry ferts! I will buy the ferts you recommended now to boost the NPK.

Do I just add the powders directly into the tank? How much do I add and how often? Bags are 250g so imagine that should last me a while.

Thanks to you and @roadmaster for the advice!

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post #12 of 13 (permalink) Old 04-13-2018, 03:53 AM Thread Starter
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This is what I could find, but guessing that's a dosage with CO2 injection (which I'm not currently doing)

+/- tsp KN03 3x a week

+/- 1/16 tsp KH2P04 3x a week

+/- 1/16 tsp (5ml) Trace Elements 3x a week

Given I'm not injecting co2 yet, I'm guessing I'd have to use smaller amounts than those listed above?

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post #13 of 13 (permalink) Old 04-14-2018, 08:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DaleM View Post
This is what I could find, but guessing that's a dosage with CO2 injection (which I'm not currently doing)

+/- tsp KN03 3x a week

+/- 1/16 tsp KH2P04 3x a week

+/- 1/16 tsp (5ml) Trace Elements 3x a week

Given I'm not injecting co2 yet, I'm guessing I'd have to use smaller amounts than those listed above?

Hi DaleM,

Obviously there are a lot of variables, such as how heavily planted, photoperiod, etc. Since you have not been dosing macros in the past I would suggest starting at 1/2 the recommended dose and then every two weeks increase slightly until algae becomes an issue. Remember, it is called the Estimative Index (EI) so the amounts will and do vary depending upon the variables in each tank....the recommended dose is not set in stone....just an estimate.
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