Ok all, I'm trying to figure out if I should continue adding fertilizer to this newly setup tank, or "chill" and let everything get established and settled before adding anything.
fauna: 3 corydorus julii, 1 SAE, 3 otocinclus
flora: heavily planted --- lots of stem plants including cabomba carolina, ludwigia repens, hygrophila difformis, didiplis diandra and 1 or 2 other species. I also have 2 small cryptocoryne wendtii(red), echinodorus 'ozelot', anubias coffeefolia, petite nana, microsorium pteropus(java fern), echinodorus tennelus(pretty sure) and glossostigma elatinoides(not growing too well....yet).
**The plants were just added 4 days ago and I did a water test 2 days ago and it showed the following:
2/24/05 ---> pH = 7.2
kH = 7 dkH
gH = 9 dkH
Ammonia = 0
Nitrite = 0
Nitrate = 10 ppm
Phosphate = 1.0
CO2 ~ 8ppm(didn't have the bubble rate worked out yet)
Pretty good results, eh? I thought the plants might benefit from some added ferts, since it appeared they were either using up the Nitrogen, or there wasn't enough to begin with, so I added about 2mL "CSM+B w/ extra iron" & "Epsom Salts"(MgSO4 + 7H2o).
2/25/05 ---> I decided to up the fishload since the tank seemed to be fairly balanced. I added 10 (small) Harlequin Rasboras & 2 red flame gouramis(I think is the name --- red and blue markings , real pretty). Everyone seems happy. I didn't add ferts this day. I also did a 30% water change.
2/26/05 ---> I added about 2 mL of CSM+B w/ extra iron & a small amt of Epsom salts. Water test was as follows:
pH = 6.6
kH = 7 dkH
gH = 6 dgH
Ammonia = 0.5 ppm
Nitrite = 0.5 ppm
Nitrate = 40 ppm(about)
Phosphate = 1.0-1.5 ppm
CO2 = 50 ppm(based on chart ---> http://www.csd.net/~cgadd/aqua/art_plant_co2chart.htm
So, should I be adding ferts? Or, if not, when is a good time to start? I have heard many opinons and I assume it depends on the situation, but I'm looking for the safest method. The plants are doing well and some are already putting out new growth, even though some were in questionable shape when I got them via mail order 4 days ago.
I have not yet been adding KNO3 or K2SO4, but I've been adding about 2 mL (20g tank) about every other day of: 2 TB CSM+B(extra Fe) + 1 TB MgSO4 in 250mL H2o,
I'm open for any suggestions. Or tell me if you need more details. I don't have an Fe test kit, but I'm sure there are no deficiencies there with 100% flourite substrate and the CSM+B w/ Fe, plus I've added a couple root tabs for the crypts and sword. Sorry this was so long, I guess I got carried away. Thanks for any suggestions or comments