Is there a fert. program that works with a biweekly water change? - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 13 (permalink) Old 09-25-2014, 01:40 AM Thread Starter
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Is there a fert. program that works with a biweekly water change?

New member-2nd post.
Looking for a fert. program that works on biweekly water change. Work makes weekly very hard to manage.

Here's what I have.

-37 column -24" high
-Fluval 305
-med/high lighting (timed 10hrs) 5 on high
- Eco-complete under polished pebble
-carbon Doser CO2 system (timed 1/2 before)

GH-14
KH-9
PH (7.1-6.9) color chart hard to pin down
Ammonia-0
NO2-0
NO3 was 0 but after Proplant(1-0-0) 40ppm

28-Tetra (neon,albino,glowline,black,x-ray)
8-rcs
1-bamboo shrimp
1-bristlenose
1-chinese ae

Anubis
Sword
Wisteria (grows faster than my lawn)
Also bba & recently hairstring algae.

All forums show 50% weekly change on EI.
Solid direction would really be helpful.
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post #2 of 13 (permalink) Old 09-25-2014, 02:09 AM
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You can do EI water changes every other week, but you will probably want to try to get closer to the amounts of fertilizers that the plants use up, so the build-up of unused chemicals will be less. If you have high light, and good CO2, you can just use the table dosages. If you have low light, with Excel, you will want to use a quarter of those dosages or a little less. With some experimenting you can determine the best dosage for your tank.

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post #3 of 13 (permalink) Old 09-25-2014, 02:13 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hoppy View Post
You can do EI water changes every other week, but you will probably want to try to get closer to the amounts of fertilizers that the plants use up, so the build-up of unused chemicals will be less. If you have high light, and good CO2, you can just use the table dosages. If you have low light, with Excel, you will want to use a quarter of those dosages or a little less. With some experimenting you can determine the best dosage for your tank.
+1

The only way to do it perfectly is to experiment. There is no 'magic number' for how many ferts your tank uses each day.

EI is so common because it is easy to get good results.


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post #4 of 13 (permalink) Old 09-25-2014, 08:55 PM Thread Starter
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Does it matter dosing dry vs. Mixed w/distilled. Is one way easier for plant take up?
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post #5 of 13 (permalink) Old 09-25-2014, 10:38 PM
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The method that you are more likely to do consistently. I dose 2x a week.
I dose traces more often when I remember to do it.




Regards,
Tom Barr
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post #6 of 13 (permalink) Old 09-25-2014, 11:52 PM
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Originally Posted by tc20 View Post
Does it matter dosing dry vs. Mixed w/distilled. Is one way easier for plant take up?
Makes no difference. Plants don't care as long as the food is in the water.


The point of fertilizing is to give plants nutrients. Give them more than they need and growth is never limited by nutrients. That's known as non-limiting nutrients. EI does this but was intended as a way to dose without testing.

If we reduce water changes too much we eventually have to test. We simply can't dose in excess and never remove the "lard".

Water changes every two weeks is acceptable. Over once a month and things seem to fall apart.

So you want to do 50% less water changes. The answer is to dose 50% of the recommended EI levels. I know it sounds too simple but it works out. When using calculators for EI dose half of what is recommended. The nutrient ranges seem to be quite close which is our goal. If you want the ranges for nutrients and an explanation of non-limiting nutrients here is a post I made explaining it.

Without knowing which fertilizers you have on hand it's impossible to give you a solid starting point. If you provide that I can give more targeted help.
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post #7 of 13 (permalink) Old 09-26-2014, 12:24 AM Thread Starter
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Seachem (trace-micro) & Proplant (1-0-0) because my NO3=0ppm, after one use it shot up to 40ppm. I'm going to buy a dry fert. package from one of the online suppliers. Which one uncertain yet.
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post #8 of 13 (permalink) Old 09-26-2014, 02:03 PM
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Originally Posted by tc20 View Post
Seachem (trace-micro) & Proplant (1-0-0) because my NO3=0ppm, after one use it shot up to 40ppm. I'm going to buy a dry fert. package from one of the online suppliers. Which one uncertain yet.
You would have had to dose 102ml of Pro-Plant to raise NO3 to 40ppm. Make sure you are performing the nitrate test correctly.

You do need additional fertilizers. You're currently missing quite a lot.

If you want to dose 50% of EI with what you have the amounts are below.

Pro-Plant 9.6ml (2 teaspoons)

Flourish Trace 82ml (~27 teaspoons)

Yes, the dose for Flourish trace is accurate! It's a very watered down trace mix. That dose was targeting Manganese at 0.05ppm which is actually 1/3 the amount in a normal dose of Plantex.
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post #9 of 13 (permalink) Old 09-26-2014, 03:53 PM Thread Starter
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Sounds like I need to get a better quality fertilizer. I'll order the pro package from green leaf unless there's a better supplier. Do U still recommend 50% of the EI schedule for biweekly water changes.
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post #10 of 13 (permalink) Old 09-26-2014, 04:08 PM
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Originally Posted by tc20 View Post
Sounds like I need to get a better quality fertilizer. I'll order the pro package from green leaf unless there's a better supplier. Do U still recommend 50% of the EI schedule for biweekly water changes.
I like Greenleaf especially since it's local for me.

Yes, I would still recommend 50% EI dosing for bi-weekly water changes.

You can see what the nutrient levels will be by using this calculator.

For example, NO3 at 7.5ppm dosed every other day and weekly 50% water changes results in a NO3 range of 30-45ppm using the 0% uptake.

Now change the water changes to bi-weekly and reduce the dose to 3.75 (half). Now the range is almost exactly the same, 26.2-45ppm

Edit: I meant to add. The longer you go between water changes the more dependent the plants uptake rates become. With bi-weekly you should be fine. Longer than that and you may see lower levels before water changes. So increasing the dosing would be needed. Make sense?

Last edited by Zorfox; 09-26-2014 at 04:24 PM. Reason: addition
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post #11 of 13 (permalink) Old 09-26-2014, 05:08 PM Thread Starter
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Yes... Thanks, this helps a lot. I have a good starting point.
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post #12 of 13 (permalink) Old 09-26-2014, 05:53 PM Thread Starter
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Sorry one more question...green leaf sells an pps-pro package with bottles and 4 macro bags or EI package with 3 macro bags. Do U have a preference?
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post #13 of 13 (permalink) Old 09-26-2014, 09:23 PM
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Sorry one more question...green leaf sells an pps-pro package with bottles and 4 macro bags or EI package with 3 macro bags. Do U have a preference?
The EI package. You pay twice as much for the PPS-pro and only get a couple of bottles and magnesium sulfate. You probably don't need magnesium sulfate if your GH is over 3 degrees. If you do, you can get 4 lbs. at Walmart for $3. Epsom salt is magnesium sulfate. The bottles? Dosing bottles are nice but $15 more dollars for them? It's your choice. I just use whatever I have laying around.
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