week on week off dosing - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 06-08-2014, 10:35 PM Thread Starter
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week on week off dosing

Hi guys,

What would be "wrong" with a week on week off dosing schedule?

I'm not trying to be cheap, I'm just wondering how that would effect my plants?

Thanks, Todd
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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 06-08-2014, 11:50 PM
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I think it depends on the type of tank you have. I have a low light no co2 tank that I only dose micro's and macro's once every other week and do a water change every other week. Now in my higher light and pressurized co2 tanks I wouldn't do that because I run the risk of running out of fertilizer, also weekly water changes would further reduce the nutrient levels. You have to look at the tank as a whole and decide whether or not you can get away with it, sometimes you can sometimes you can't.
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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 06-08-2014, 11:56 PM
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Depends on how much you dose to begin/w. And if you do weekly water changes it will deplete the ferts at that time also.
If you are talking about a minimum amount of ferts to begin/w and low to bottom end of med light level lighting...probable nothing will change unless you have one or more of the types of plants which use more of any particular fert than normal.
They also might not be effected if the light is low enough to only get slow growth.
There are a lot of mights and ifs in this when talking about it.
But if(again...)you are using full EI it will cause issues as the plants are used to a continuos supply of ferts which you will interupt.
Most likely anyway.

The shortest distance between any two points is a straight line...in the opposite direction...
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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 06-09-2014, 01:45 AM
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Not a good idea. Plants use enzymes to assimilate various things much like we need stomach acid to breakdown foods. They produce more or less depending on what is available. Those enzymes are "costly" to make. This means maintaining a relativity stable nutrient level prevents plants from turning on/off production. Plants seem to respond well to multiple doses per week more than less. About three times a week seems to be the sweet spot.
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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 06-09-2014, 02:05 AM Thread Starter
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what I'm thinking about doing is full dosing one week and then half dosing the next week with a water change only every other week (call me time constrained or just lazy of doing water changes every week). I do run a low amount of CO2 and what I'd call "medium" light levels

maybe I'll just give it a try and see how it goes?
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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 06-09-2014, 04:14 AM
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Why don't you do some experimenting to find out what dosages you need, when dosed 3X per week? You can start with the EI method tables, to see what a for certain non-limiting dosage makes the plants do. Then reduce the nitrate dosage a small amount, say 25%, and watch the plants for a week or two to see if anything changes for the worse. If it seems to have no effect, repeat, until you can see a change. Then go back to the previous dosage, and that will be your minimum for nitrates. Repeat this for phosphates. Then repeat it for the trace element mix. If you dose potassium sulfate, do that right after the nitrate reduction.

Now that you know what the minimum dosages are, you can use that, and wait at least 2 weeks between water changes, maybe even a month.

Hoppy
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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old 06-10-2014, 04:09 AM
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Just cut the EI dosing to 1/2 for the whole 2 weeks. Don't get weird dosing levels, changing through the 2 weeks.

A high quality substrate, high CEC will hold extra fertilizers and the plants can use this as a reserve. If you are just using sand or gravel then switch to a high CEC substrate so you can reduce the dosing and water changes.

Alternate idea:
Add fertilizer tablets deep under the substrate, then cut the EI to 1/4.
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