Fertiliser Dose or not to dose macro Fertilizer? - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-24-2019, 11:12 AM Thread Starter
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Fertiliser Dose or not to dose macro Fertilizer?

So as my title my tank is as follows 120 gallon medium planted with eco complete as substrate, I dose micro ferts twice a week lights are 20w led flood lights cool 6,500k stock in the tank is as follows stendker discus 9, Congo tetras 8, rummy nose 15, cardinals 20, Cory cats 5, and 2 rams.

I feed the discus 3 times a day but find some of the plants don’t grow as fast as they should Brazilian Pennywort being one of them. The tank is cO2 injected at 30ppm

Ph lights out in the morning is 7.6 and down to 6.9 once lights on and Co2 on.

My nitrates are between 20 & 40ppm

My phosphate is about 2ppm

Would it be beneficial to add macro Fertilizers with nitrates being as high for the discus and the tank being fed as much?

Plant growth is slow for what it should be I think.
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post #2 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-24-2019, 12:52 PM
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At the very least start dosing some potassium and see if it improves growth, your other macros should be in sufficient ranges
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post #3 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-24-2019, 12:58 PM
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I agree with Remmy - add some potassium.
Now the more lengthy answer, my 75gt tank full of rainbow fish get fed pretty well. Over the years I have lowered my nitrate dosing down to 5ppm / week and the phosphate is not far behind.
If you are feeding your tank plenty of food, it"MAY" work in your situation to just dose potassium and micro nutrients.
Now the other twist for you is with Discus you may do more water changes than I do so the above advice may not work as well.


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post #4 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-24-2019, 01:09 PM
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Agree with the other two, if not dosing K than do so, K won't be provided and is needed in good supply. The pennwort shouldn't be that demanding in terms of light and co2.


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post #5 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-24-2019, 02:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Discuskeeper View Post
lights are 20w led flood lights cool 6,500k
How many and for how many hours a day? I have 550W lights over 125 gallon to grow plants. For the nutrients you need only K, Ca, Mg and trace elements. The fish supplies plenty of N and P.
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post #6 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-24-2019, 08:23 PM Thread Starter
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Ok thanks for the suggestions will try this out first with potassium. Lights are on for 9 hours. And 2 hours moonlight there after. 5 of these flood lights at 20w each 24inch deep tank
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post #7 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-24-2019, 09:08 PM
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Quote:
For the nutrients you need only K, Ca, Mg and trace elements. The fish supplies plenty of N and P.
I agree with this but if you add potassium (I would use potassium sulfate) and your Ca and Mg, N, and P are OK, your plants may need more micros. In fact the slow growth of your plants might already be cused by micro deficiency.

You could get a better idea as to what is going on in your tank by doing a lab test on your tank water.:
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...JAGKKH3G&psc=1

Or

https://www.bulkreefsupply.com/icp-o...-triton-1.html

Both of these test would produce a lot of data. When looking at this data highlight all the plant nutrients (K, Ca,Mg,P,S,Cl, fe,Mn,B,Zn,Cu,Mo,Ni) Note this test will not detect N. After highlighting the plant nutrients look for zero levels. A zero level indicates your water is deficient in that nutrient and that will slow the growth of your plants.
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post #8 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-24-2019, 09:20 PM
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Let pennywort grow as floating vine, your fish will love hanging out under this. Will grow like a weed, its naturally a marginal/shore plant and does best that way. Its easy to tie up a raft of it just where you want it with some fishing line lassoed around last node on vine. Also takes about 5min to trim it back when grown like that.

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post #9 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-24-2019, 10:23 PM
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Pennywort, if you want to destroy your grass just release it outside.


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post #10 of 44 (permalink) Old 09-01-2019, 10:15 PM Thread Starter
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Is organic no3 fish poop the same as no3 fertiliser? I’m thinking of going back to Ei dosing?
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post #11 of 44 (permalink) Old 09-01-2019, 11:04 PM
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Is organic no3 fish poop the same as no3 fertiliser? Im thinking of going back to Ei dosing?
NO3 is NO3, no matter the source. As others mentioned, once you add potassium, keep and eye out for improved growth, which may then require changes (additions) in some other nutrients. No need to attach your regimen to EI, just watch for a while after adding K and then see what might be needed.

You might also want to start measuring GH to make sure that your Ca and Mg remain where they should.
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post #12 of 44 (permalink) Old 09-01-2019, 11:22 PM
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Is organic no3 fish poop the same as no3 fertiliser? I’m thinking of going back to Ei dosing?
No3 might be the same, but the way you got there is completely different. Your always better off dosing No3 then having it accumulate naturally.

Dosed nitrate levels didn't get in your tank after releasing ammonia, nitrate and other toxins from decomposing organic matter. These bi-products along the way can and do affect fish health and cause algae issues, while dosed nitrates generally don't. High naturally occurring nitrates means the tank is generally 'dirty' comparably and you are more likely to have issues.
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post #13 of 44 (permalink) Old 09-01-2019, 11:36 PM
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No3 might be the same, but the way you got there is completely different. Your always better off dosing No3 then having it accumulate naturally.

Dosed nitrate levels didn't get in your tank after releasing ammonia, nitrate and other toxins from decomposing organic matter. These bi-products along the way can and do affect fish health and cause algae issues, while dosed nitrates generally don't. High naturally occurring nitrates means the tank is generally 'dirty' comparably and you are more likely to have issues.
Are you suggesting Discuskeeper removes his nine Stendker Discus from his aquarium? Because if not then the quantity of NO3 and related toxins from fish waste is not going to change by adding more NO3 from fertilizer, as you propose.


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post #14 of 44 (permalink) Old 09-01-2019, 11:53 PM
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Are you suggesting Discuskeeper removes his nine Stendker Discus from his aquarium? Because if not then the quantity of NO3 and related toxins from fish waste is not going to change by adding more NO3 from fertilizer, as you propose.

Firstly, I'm answering OP question.

Water changes haven't even been discussed so I'm not sure how you can make the above statement. In addition, organic removal media, carbon, etc can also be added or increased to remove more organics. There's also good, old fashioned husbandry which can always be increased to reduce organics. This is a real tank, not one of your experimental setups. I would trust dosing non-toxic no3 over the tank supplying it and/or trusting test kits anytime.
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post #15 of 44 (permalink) Old 09-02-2019, 12:35 AM
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My nitrates are between 20 & 40ppm

.

What size are your discus?

All Low-tech:
180 g. w/ wild South American cichlids, corydoras eques, and African Congo riverine tetras.
60 g. w/ F1 Alenquer discus pair and wild red spotted green discus
30 g. Shrimp Bloody Mary Shrimp and Caridina cf. babaulti "Zebra"
Fluvel Flex 9 gallon- Bloody Mary Shrimp and Caridina cf. babaulti "Zebra"
Fluvel Spec 3- Golden Bee shrimp
30 g. Quarantine/Hospital

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