when to fertilize ? - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 01-05-2004, 10:53 AM Thread Starter
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When I change my water 25% weekends + 10% midweek I usually add my fertilizer. But does the Stress Coat water conditioner I add, and the reactivation of my water softener pillow, bind up my ferts ?
Would it be better to fertilize the day after the water changes ?
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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 01-05-2004, 11:37 AM
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It could bind up some of the micro nutrients as I believe StressCoat is supposed to take metals out of the water, though I'm not clear on which ones. How big is your tank and how much chlorine (chloramines) is in your tap water? Could you age your water? Do you have room to run an empty tank with the softening pillow in it? That way you could add ferts to aged water, then your tanks, without worrying about the StressCoat or the softening pillow.

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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 01-05-2004, 01:18 PM Thread Starter
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Yep, the stress coat says it binds heavy metals.
I don't use very much as I use buckets for water changes so I only add enough to dechlorinate the new water.
I wish I had room for an extra tank - but believe me it wouldn't stay empty - no willpower I'm afraid !
I also have no room to store water...I'm moving down two levels to the basement flat in a few weeks so I'll have even less room (still haven't worked out how to move the tanks!!).
So thanks for the reply...but back to the original question..should I wait a day to fertilize ?
Also I just bought some JBL Liquid ferts...is this good stuff ?? It cost almost double what I usually pay for leaf zone but also contains trace elements.
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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 01-05-2004, 01:29 PM
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I guess it all depends on how the StressCoat binds the metals and how long it is active in your tank after you add it. I don't use any dechlorinators personally, luckily the water is pretty good here. I'd probably want to wait the day and let the StressCoat do it's thing and hopefully leave the system. I'm sure interested to hear what others do.

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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 01-22-2004, 08:40 AM Thread Starter
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A little 'bump' up the list for any more opinions...
Also, do I need to fertilize ?
My light is low (50W T8 + reflectors over 180 L) so 1.05WP(US)Gallon or 1.26WP(UK)Gallon. (I presume the basic WPG rule applies to US Gallons ?)
I have high Phosphates from the tap.
I inject CO2.
My plants are growing, but the hair/beard algae is growing better.
The fertilizer I have is JBL Liquid stuff with Potassium, Iron and Traces.
Would the ferts help the plants outcompete the algae at this low light level or make the problem worse ?
I have recently removed the fertilizer bags I was using and plant growth has slowed considerably, algae growth has slowed a bit.
I can't get the new lights for 8 weeks as the manufacturer didn't make enough !!
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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 01-22-2004, 09:34 AM
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How high are your phosphates? Got nitrates? Make sure you have nitrates(usually good to have 10x concentration of NO3 to PO4) and see what happens...however you'll be lucky if that rids your algea IMO. Without your new lighting you can fert all you want and the algae will still remain since your lighting is limiting plant growth. Until than I guess you can use a PO4 remover and than readd a tiny amount just enough for the plants to use, leaving none for the algae.
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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old 01-22-2004, 03:20 PM Thread Starter
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My phosphates are 2ppm out of the tap. My tank nitrates hover around 10 so by changing 10% water I add 0.2ppm phosphates which is 2x what I need.
I may try some Rowaphos in my filter if I can't get hold of any decent lights.
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