Low Tech, Non-CO2 tank with root feeders. - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 10-24-2015, 07:49 PM Thread Starter
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Low Tech, Non-CO2 tank with root feeders.

Hi folks,

Looking to run a low pH tank with a peat substrate. Since all of my low tech tanks have always had a soil substrate, and peat won't supply what my plants will need to grow, I'm looking to understand what I'll need to grow them in a non-CO2 environment.

Plants will be mainly swords and vals, with maybe a few anubias.

Is there any chance someone could point me in the right direction to understand the difference between water column dosing like this:
Non CO2 methods - Aquarium Plants - Barr Report

...and something with a form of root tab.

My other restriction is that the fish are nitrate sensitive, and my understanding is osmocote might not be the way to go as a result.

Thanks!
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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 10-24-2015, 08:13 PM
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I think you should look at those fish and find out what is their natural habitat and as
reasonable as possible duplicate that. This I think will not include peat as the sub.
The ability of peat to lower the PH is not everlasting. Therefore using it as a sub means constantly changing the sub.
Since you want these special fish and seem willing to do whatever to please them it might be to your advantage to just do a dirt sub for the plants. Then do peat in the filter to lower the PH. Or you could contact Dianna as she already does DIY peat extract
for her tanks and I believe that she would give you the details of that.
Then you could skip plants that don't get nutrients from the sub without harm to any
other plants that you do have. The water column ferts would/can be eliminated that way
as they are just dumped into the water to mix/w it.

The shortest distance between any two points is a straight line...in the opposite direction...
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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 10-24-2015, 09:28 PM Thread Starter
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Didn't mean to be obtuse about special fish, just keeping the question simple. This is for otos, so heavily planted is an absolute requirement to raise fry successfully.

The substrate doesn't have to supply the acidity forever, I'm fine to supplement with peat extract as the substrate depletes of tannin.

Peat has come up in a few locations (like the link) as a suggested substrate, so I just need to figure out how to maintain plants in it.

The Barr link seems fine, but uses water column dosing. I wasn't sure if swords would prefer root feeding, that's all.
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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 10-26-2015, 07:54 PM
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I once grew swords in a filter sand substrate, with water column fertilizing (EI), and they grew so fast they took over the entire tank. All aquatic plants take in nutrients through the leaves as well as the roots. Either method of dosing works for most plants, and both together work best for most plants.

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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 10-26-2015, 09:17 PM Thread Starter
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Good to hear! Going to try PPS pro dosing, don't need quite as much growth as EI seems to provide.
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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 10-27-2015, 08:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AdamTill View Post
Good to hear! Going to try PPS pro dosing, don't need quite as much growth as EI seems to provide.
It is a very bad idea to try to regulate growth rates with fertilizers. You should try to get the maximum growth rate the amount of light you have will allow. Doing otherwise tends to lead to unhealthy plants, which lead to algae problems.

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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old 10-28-2015, 03:16 AM Thread Starter
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Fair concept, enough. Not quite what I meant, but I get your point.
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