Help needed for new dosing routine - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-25-2015, 03:18 AM Thread Starter
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Help needed for new dosing routine

Hello everyone, I need advice for a new dosing routine that could better fit my water change schedule which is currently based on a 50% water change every 2 weeks. Unfortunately I can’t currently afford to change water more often than that.

I have easily found out the amount of macros I need to dose every week without accumulating them too much (just because I can easily test KNo3 as well as Po4), but I am having issues to calculate correctly the amount of micros, that I’d like to be able to dose as a solution daily for the sake of simplicity, and I want to be sure to avoid possible deficiencies as well as possible accumulation of traces which could potentially take me into the toxicity realm as I have read around (with the every-two-weeks water change schedule, accumulation of nutrients is something that could more easily happen than with the traditional weekly water change routine).


Here is my current tank’s data:

75gl tank with wet/dry filter
Pressurized Co2 30-40ppm during photoperiod
Photoperiod of 7 hours a day.
Light intensity: 40-50 PAR at substrate
KNo3 weekly dosing: 3 x 1/4 tsp (about 4.24 grams)
Po4 weekly dosing: 1 x 1/8 tsp (about 0.50 grams)
Tank is heavily planted, see a picture of my tank at the link below to understand my plant density:

https://www.dropbox.com/s/euzxai1csv...06.22.jpg?dl=0


The schedule I’d like to have is the following, based on a 2-weeks schedule with water change on Saturday:

1st week Saturday: 50% WC + macros dosing
1st week Sunday: traces dosing
1st week Monday: traces dosing
1st week Tuesday: traces dosing
1st week Wednesday: traces dosing
1st week Thursday: traces dosing
1st week Friday: traces dosing

2nd week Saturday: macros dosing
2nd week Sunday: traces dosing
2nd week Monday: traces dosing
2nd week Tuesday: traces dosing
2nd week Wednesday: traces dosing
2nd week Thursday: traces dosing
2nd week Friday: traces dosing


I’d like to dose micros by using 1 liter solution that I can dose daily from Sunday to Friday, and I found that a possible dosing regime would be making a solution of 1 liter (1000 ml) with about 40 grams of Plantex CSM + B which would give me a daily dosing of 10 ml. By using Wet’s calculator (http://rota.la), looks like that that will give me about 0.1 ppm of Fe a day… will that be enough? Or will that be potential of accumulation issues in the future? I have used the very cool “Accumulation of fertilizers vs time and plant uptake” from Wet’s calculator, trying to understand what are my risks, but it is very difficult to have useful data without knowing my tank’s plant intake… how would you know that? From the picture of my tank and my tank’s data above, how much intake would you think my plants would have every week? Do you think such a kind of trace regime would be sufficient, not enough, or too much?

I am open to your advice, thoughts and suggestions… thank you to all in advance!

Best,
Fab.
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-25-2015, 03:52 AM
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If you were following the EI method, and using CSM+B for traces, and KH2PO4 for phosphates, then a really simple dose is to make these 2 equal.
This is probably still OK if you have tested and figured out a phosphorus dose that works for you. Just adjust the CSM+B dose to account for dosing every day. The easiest might simply be to get a test for Fe.

I know that some planted tank folks add a little more iron to the CSM+B at the ratio of 3 parts CSM+B:1 part chelated iron. Use DTPA-Fe if your water is neutral to alkaline. EDTA-Fe is OK if the water is acidic. (CSM+B has EDTA-Fe) You could do this, and still target .1ppm Fe per day (or whatever you figure out is right) and not run the risk of over dosing on the micros. Plants use a lot more iron than they do of all the other micros.

Are you tracking the TDS, GH, KH or other indicator of how much minerals or salts evaporation might be leaving in the tank?
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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-25-2015, 02:53 PM Thread Starter
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Help needed for new dosing routine

Quote:
Originally Posted by Diana View Post
If you were following the EI method, and using CSM+B for traces, and KH2PO4 for phosphates, then a really simple dose is to make these 2 equal.
This is probably still OK if you have tested and figured out a phosphorus dose that works for you. Just adjust the CSM+B dose to account for dosing every day. The easiest might simply be to get a test for Fe.

I know that some planted tank folks add a little more iron to the CSM+B at the ratio of 3 parts CSM+B:1 part chelated iron. Use DTPA-Fe if your water is neutral to alkaline. EDTA-Fe is OK if the water is acidic. (CSM+B has EDTA-Fe) You could do this, and still target .1ppm Fe per day (or whatever you figure out is right) and not run the risk of over dosing on the micros. Plants use a lot more iron than they do of all the other micros.

Are you tracking the TDS, GH, KH or other indicator of how much minerals or salts evaporation might be leaving in the tank?

Thank you Diana for your reply. I have pretty hard water (GH 13, KH 7-8) and alkaline tap water Ph (8), that's why besides CSM + B I add a pinch of DTPA Fe as you were suggesting.

The fact is: yes, as you were saying, I can easily calculate the dosing of weekly micros from the amount of weekly macros I am giving, and then divide that by the number of days of the week I want to dose, but what I would come with would be a very low daily dose of 5ml of the above mentioned solution and I know that that would be too low for my plants because in the past they suffered a micro deficiency just because I dosed 20ml of the same solution every 3 days, and was too low. I then doubled that dosing and my plants flourished back....

In any case, I don't want make all this too complicated, what I am trying to find out is if by dosing 10ml of the above solution daily every week, with a water change every 2 weeks, I have any risks to reach toxicity levels. I am sure you are asking yourself: why is this guy worried about all this if his plants are growing well? Well, it's because they are not right now. Some plants like Alternanthera Reinikii and Rotala Rotoundifolia are a little stunted at the tips, which makes me think they have some sort of micros deficiency... Or are those signs of a possible toxicity? I am quite confused, and your help to understand on what side I am actually in (deficiency or toxicity?) is very welcome! I hope I gave you enough data to help me in this quest. I will try to post some pictures for you of my plants that will help a great deal.

Thanks!

Last edited by fablau; 04-25-2015 at 05:41 PM.
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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-26-2015, 12:53 AM Thread Starter
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Help needed for new dosing routine

Ok, here are some pictures of my tank:



Here is my Rotala's stunted tips, I hope you can see them:






And here is my Althernanthera:





As I said, all other plants are growing well despite I have a little of BBA on slow growers old leaves... I'll wait for your thoughts! Thanks.
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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-26-2015, 02:59 AM
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Beautiful plants. Looking very healthy!
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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-26-2015, 03:52 AM Thread Starter
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Thank you geekdad, but not the ones I am complaining about...
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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-27-2015, 04:08 AM
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test your water everyday and you will know after a few days if you need to add or decrease
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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-28-2015, 04:42 AM Thread Starter
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Are you suggesting to test Fe? I am not sure Fe tests are reliable...
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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-31-2015, 09:39 PM Thread Starter
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May 31, BBA UPDATE: gone. Yes, BBA is gone! Here is what I have done to make it disappear from my tank for the past month:

1. Got back to regular EI schedule by daily alternating macros with micros. Dosing 1/3 less than the recommended EI, just because I perform water change every 2 weeks.

2. Four weeks ago, after water change, I added recommended dose of Excel (the high dosage recommended after water change). That destroyed completely all BBA I had, but also damaged some of my Vals (too bad!) that have now recovered

3. Raised Co2 a little until I could see pearling on plants (tanks Tom for the tip I read on another thread somewhere!). As a reference, I raised Co2 to reach 80ml per minute. And I'll keep it that way from now on!

So... this has been my recipe to get rid of BBA after 8 months of struggling!

I think the following points helped a big deal:

1. Excel helped to get rid of everything bad was out right at that moment (BBA)

2. Raising Co2.

3. Getting back into regular fert routine without being afraid of "toxicities". I mean, all my plants got better, Alternathera Reinikii included which was struggling in a long time! In particular I think the increase of micros helped the most.


I hope my experience could be useful for other people. I'll keep watching my tank to see if that damn BBA will ever come back, but so far so good! Thanks again to anyone on this forum for the help given.

Best,
Fab.
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