Equilibrium & Magnesium Deficiency - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old 02-14-2014, 08:12 PM Thread Starter
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Equilibrium & Magnesium Deficiency

I recently noticed the leaves on my banana plant and some of the anubias in my tank are becoming a pale green/almost yellow...as if the color is draining. But the veins of the leaves remain dark green. After doing some research I think I may have a magnesium deficiency. Researching magnesium led me to learning about water hardness/softness and GH and KH which honestly are parameters I have all but ignored up to this point.

So I tested my tank water for GH and KH and it turns out I have relatively soft water:

GH: 71.6ppm (4dh)
KH: 71.6ppm (4dh)

So I have starting dosing Seachem's Equilibrium to try and raise the hardness to 6dh and increase magnesium. First dose was yesterday. My question is will Equilibrium have enough Magnesium to reverse the deficiency? I realize this may be difficult to answer without knowing the level of Magnesium in the tank. I haven't tested it but according to a water report from my Town I have 5.4ppm of Magnesium out of the tap.

Here are the details of the tank:

54g corner bow front
Dosing macro and micro ferts using EI method
No pressurized CO2 but I am dosing Excel
Lighting is a T5 HO with 2 6,700k bulbs that run for 9 hours on a timer
Full bioload
Pretty heavily planted

I'm sure I'm leaving out details so please ask any questions. Thanks!
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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old 02-14-2014, 08:31 PM
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Epsom salt is Magnesium that will also raise your GH. It is dirt cheap and you can get it at any drug and most grocery stores.
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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old 02-14-2014, 08:49 PM
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I'm in a similar situation as you. Out of the tap my GH is 1. The town's water report says total hardness is 5.9ppm. This is good in a way because I use equilibrium and it has the correct ratio of calcium to mag. I raise the gH up to 2-3 with this method. I might move it up to a solid 4 because I see some issues like you have described but with my java fern and odd growing from star grass. I'm currently adding 3/4 tsp equalibrium to a 40b tank.
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post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old 02-14-2014, 08:55 PM
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Equilibrium has calcium and magnesium, so if the GH originally has a reasonably balanced ratio of Ca:Mg, then the Equilibrium is a good idea.

If you think the Ca:Mg ratio is somehow skewed so the Mg is too low, then Epsom salt will add just the Mg without the Ca. This might be the way to go, seeing the water quality report shows so little Mg.

Plants use Ca and Mg in a ratio of about 4 parts Ca to 1 part Mg. The water does not have to have this exact ratio, but something close to it would be pretty good.

If you get a calcium test for aquariums then look for the formula to figure out how much Ca and how much Mg is in your water you could get a better idea how to best supplement your tank. The math is easy enough, but it is not simply GH-Ca=Mg. Look it up.

You know, even easier is to dose and watch the plants.
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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old 02-14-2014, 10:02 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks everyone for the quick responses!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tzac View Post
Epsom salt is Magnesium that will also raise your GH. It is dirt cheap and you can get it at any drug and most grocery stores.
Thanks. I actually figured this out after jumping the gun and ordering the Equilibrium! Oh well...if I do continue to dose a general GH Booster I will most likely order from the same place I get my dry ferts.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Positron View Post
I'm in a similar situation as you. Out of the tap my GH is 1. The town's water report says total hardness is 5.9ppm. This is good in a way because I use equilibrium and it has the correct ratio of calcium to mag. I raise the gH up to 2-3 with this method. I might move it up to a solid 4 because I see some issues like you have described but with my java fern and odd growing from star grass. I'm currently adding 3/4 tsp
equalibrium to a 40b tank.
I've got Java as well but it seems to be doing fine at 4dh. My luck I will increase it to 6dh and something will go wrong with the Java!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Diana View Post
Equilibrium has calcium and magnesium, so if the GH originally has a reasonably balanced ratio of Ca:Mg, then the Equilibrium is a good idea.

If you think the Ca:Mg ratio is somehow skewed so the Mg is too low, then Epsom salt will add just the Mg without the Ca. This might be the way to go, seeing the water quality report shows so little Mg.

Plants use Ca and Mg in a ratio of about 4 parts Ca to 1 part Mg. The water does not have to have this exact ratio, but something close to it would be pretty good.

If you get a calcium test for aquariums then look for the formula to figure out how much Ca and how much Mg is in your water you could get a better idea how to best supplement your tank. The math is easy enough, but it is not simply GH-Ca=Mg. Look it up.

You know, even easier is to dose and watch the plants.
Thanks for the info! I will have to pick up a Calcium test. My water report indicates Calcium of 16.1ppm. I will do a bit of research on the ratio formula.
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