Mg Levels in Water Questions - The Planted Tank Forum
Old 06-11-2019, 01:15 AM Thread Starter
Algae Grower

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Mg Levels in Water Questions

So I've been trying to figure out my Mg levels in my tap water (well water). My GH is 10 in the tank, and I calculated 7/10 of that is Calcium, so assuming Mg makes up the other three, I've got roughly 13ppm Mg in my tank.

My questions is should I add more Mg? I don't currently dose Mg at all, and considering my GH is already at 10, I'm worried about going higher. Any thoughts?
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Old 06-11-2019, 02:36 AM
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Best I understand Ca & Mg should be in a 1 :3-4 ratio. Too far away from that and the calcium take is affected. What is your water source and how do you know ppm of your Ca?

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Old 06-11-2019, 11:43 PM Thread Starter
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Water source is well water and I calcluated by using a calcium test and then compared that to a GH test. I subtracted the GH of 10 from the calcium hardness of 7 to get three. This is the method I used - https://www.plantedtank.net/forums/1...g-calcium.html
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Old 06-12-2019, 01:20 AM
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If your Ca is 50 ppm, that is 7 dGH Ca. If your total water GH is 10 dGH, then your Mg is 13 ppm ...just as you calculated. This would be what many consider an ideal 4:1 ratio and is more than enough Mg for your plants. i run my tank on about 4-6 ppm Mg, but there are other likely differences in our tanks.
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Old 06-13-2019, 01:24 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Deanna View Post
If your Ca is 50 ppm, that is 7 dGH Ca. If your total water GH is 10 dGH, then your Mg is 13 ppm ...just as you calculated. This would be what many consider an ideal 4:1 ratio and is more than enough Mg for your plants. i run my tank on about 4-6 ppm Mg, but there are other likely differences in our tanks.
Thank you for helping! Good to know. Now if only I can dial in my dosing, I’m trying to stick to EI methods, but I end up with pretty high phosphates and nitrates after a few weeks. Not to say an excess of nutrients causes algae problems, but i do worry it gets too high.
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Old 06-13-2019, 02:43 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kkgtyf View Post
Thank you for helping! Good to know. Now if only I can dial in my dosing, I’m trying to stick to EI methods, but I end up with pretty high phosphates and nitrates after a few weeks. Not to say an excess of nutrients causes algae problems, but i do worry it gets too high.
You're doing the recommended water change of at least 50% once a week right?
As long as you have a fairly good plant mass and the plants are growing well, I wouldn't worry too much.
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Old 06-13-2019, 08:24 PM Thread Starter
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I honestly am wondering if I have enough plant mass for EI. I do the recommended water changes though of 50% weekly. Plants have been struggling from diatom outbreak. I have a 20 long, and I have a small amount of Christmas moss, s repens carpet covering half the floor, some anubias nana petite, a few small pieces of bucephalandra, and a struggling ludwigia natans super red bunch. Things are growing, but not well, and the diatoms covering plant leaves is not doing any favors.
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Old 06-13-2019, 09:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kkgtyf View Post
Thank you for helping! Good to know. Now if only I can dial in my dosing, I’m trying to stick to EI methods, but I end up with pretty high phosphates and nitrates after a few weeks. Not to say an excess of nutrients causes algae problems, but i do worry it gets too high.
An important part of EI is the 50% weekly water change, which is designed to help reset your nutrients so that they don't get too far out of line.

Having said this, I don't use EI anymore (many of us are moving away from it). My belief is that EI is more suited to high tech, heavy plant-mass, tanks and can make things much easier for beginners having such setups. It's just a way to ensure sufficient quantities of nutrients at all times. Once you get your plants growing well, you can decide whether or not to continue or, as you gain knowledge/experience, start to fine-tune your total inputs (nutrients, CO2, light, flow, etc).

Another fine way to go is the PPS system, which uses far less nutrients.

Both systems can work, but neither is a guarantee against problems. As problems appear, you can address them as needed and seek help on this forum when you can't solve it yourself.
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Old 06-14-2019, 12:54 AM
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Deanna is absolutely right! Pick one way and do it for at LEAST 6 mos. just to let things settle in. My problem is I kept “fiddling” with things. Watch the plants and the whole system got through seasons. You will see beautiful plant you never thought possible. But realize you will also likely see times where everything just seems to melt away for no apparent reason. The best piece of advice is to stay the course. Be patient, it will come. And spend time reading things here. Read things three times before doing anything. Lol. Enjoy your creation!

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Old 06-14-2019, 01:15 AM
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Buy more webcams than you need and then fiddle with them outside the tank for all the best camera angles on your ecosystem.
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Old 06-14-2019, 01:38 AM Thread Starter
Algae Grower

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Quote:
Originally Posted by diverjoe View Post
Deanna is absolutely right! Pick one way and do it for at LEAST 6 mos. just to let things settle in. My problem is I kept “fiddling” with things. Watch the plants and the whole system got through seasons. You will see beautiful plant you never thought possible. But realize you will also likely see times where everything just seems to melt away for no apparent reason. The best piece of advice is to stay the course. Be patient, it will come. And spend time reading things here. Read things three times before doing anything. Lol. Enjoy your creation!

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Such a challenging, yet true aspect of this hobby. Patience and persistence! Sage advice.
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