Potassium nitrate for potassium deficiency. - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old 04-20-2015, 05:55 PM Thread Starter
JSV
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Question Potassium nitrate for potassium deficiency.

Hi,

I have a doubt with potassium nitrate. Since I haven't found potassium sulphate, I bought some potassium nitrate. The composition is 45% K and 13% N, plus inert elements. I make 50% water changes every week in my 5 and 10 gallon tanks. I have DIY Co2 and 2.5 watts/gallon in both tanks.

Can I use it to provide potassium? How can I control the nitrates?

Thanks.
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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old 04-20-2015, 06:02 PM
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Have you looked at the dosing calculators online? Those are probably the best place to start.

http://calc.petalphile.com/
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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old 04-20-2015, 06:06 PM Thread Starter
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Yeah, I did. It says that my dose should be 1/16 tsp per 5 gallons. My doubt is how I can control the nitrates.
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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old 04-20-2015, 06:18 PM
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Are your nitrates a problem that need controlling?

Plants need nitrogen to after all.

If your nitrates are already a problem, KNO3 is probably not the best source of potassium to be using, and you should find some K2SO4.

I currently half-dose my KNO3 because I'm overstocked with fish (which produce plenty of nitrate to keep me above 20ppm), and dose K2SO4 to make up for it.

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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old 04-20-2015, 06:18 PM
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Do you have access to Seachem's Potassium product? You probably want dry ferts, but this can tie you over until you get K2SO4.

So you are getting enough Nitrates from the ammonia cycle? And your plants can't uptake the Nitrates in the tank? Do you have a test kit for Nitrates to know for sure your nitrates are running high?
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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old 04-20-2015, 06:53 PM Thread Starter
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The nitrates are not a problem right now, there's no algae yet. I'll use potassium nitrate temporary until I find some potassium sulphate.

I don't have a nitrate test but maybe the water changes would keep it controlled I guess... ?
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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old 04-20-2015, 07:15 PM
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Waterchanges will also take out the K. Most people on this forum use the EI method for dosing different chemicals to the water. The testing behind this method shows that nutrients (nitrate, phosphate etc) does not cause algae in itself. So for us that use EI, we have a lot of all the nutrients in the water. What causes algae is to much light or to little available co2 for your current setup. So the general notion goes, you got algae, use more Co2. If you can't do that (Because you don't have Co2, or already have a high ppm of Co2 in the water) use less lights.

So if you want to go the nutrient limiting approach to algae, you will have a hard time with plants ime.

If you just want to dose just K you can use Potassium sulphate as you mentioned, or you could also use Potassium Chloride (KCL) if thats easier to get where you are.


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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old 04-20-2015, 07:18 PM
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Nitrates (and other fertilizers) don't generally cause algae in planted tanks... So the absence or presence of algae isn't really an indicator. If it did the EI folks would be in deep trouble.

Water changing is the basic premise that EI uses to control levels... You don't have to use EI to take advantage of that basic fact.

If you do a 50% water change weekly, it is impossible to have more than twice what you dose each week (counting all sources, including fish food which is significant for nitrates...).

Similarly a 25% weekly change caps you at 4x your weekly dose, and a 20% weekly change caps your levels at 5x your weekly dose.

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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old 04-20-2015, 08:57 PM Thread Starter
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So 25% water changes would help to stabilize nitrates...
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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old 04-20-2015, 09:09 PM
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25% water changes will help limit the levels of everything that isn't in your change water.. including nitrate and potassium..

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