Super High Phosphates - is this killing my plants? - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 41 (permalink) Old 01-01-2020, 12:33 AM Thread Starter
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Super High Phosphates - is this killing my plants?

Hello Everyone -

I am a new member here with a fairly new 75 gallon planted tank. The tank has been up for about 6 months now and various plants and fish. I am not really sure exactly what fish or plants as I went with what the local fish store (The Ocean Floor) to get the tank started and used their recommended plants and fish.

I don't have a journal set up yet, but here are the basics of the tank:

75 Gallons
Fluval FX6 & 406 Filters (406 is bio-media only)
Water changes (10 gallons every two weeks) are done with a 4-stage RODI system
The substrate is CaribSea Eco-Complete Planted Aquarium - Black
A few rocks and wood
Plant Spectrum Fluval Bluetooth Freshwater Light LED (48" - 60")
Fluval 300 watt tank heater connected to Inkbird Monitor & Alarm
Seneye Monitoring with Webserver
Fish are fed utilizing micro pellets every three days and only a small amount that they can eat in 5 minutes


Here are my water readings, all of these are from today:
TANK
kH = 3
gH = 16
PO4 = 12
pH = 7.1
Nitrate = 0
Nitrite = 0
Ammona = 0 (My Seneye reports Ammonia at 0.009)

RODI
kH = ~1
gH = ~1
PO4 = 0
pH = 6.4
Nitrate = 0
Nitrite = 0
Ammona = 0

TAP (even though I do not use tap water for water changes I wanted to get a good reading on it)
kH = 7
gH = 16
PO4 = .25
pH = 7.5
Nitrate = 0
Nitrite = 0
Ammona = 0


I am currently dosing with Fresh Trace and Flourish Trace twice per week per the instructions on the bottle. I also dose with Nitromax every water change per the instructions on the bottle.

So I started having issues with my plants. My fish seem just fine, I lost a couple to my cats before I made some changes to the tank and very early on I think I lost one small fish, other than that not a single other death in the ~six months the tank has been active. I have had some issues with algae on and off and have been trying to keep it cleaned out manually. Once it got really bad and the folks at the Ocean Floor suggested blacking out the tank for three days which killed all of the algae.

I currently have my lighting matched to the sunrise/sunset with a 5% blue at night for moonlighting.



So here is the before picture of my tank about two months ago:




and here it is today:







And here is a current snapshot of my Seneye dashboard:





With the decline of my plants I started reading (here) more about testing PO4, etc and much to my surprise it is off the charts and I am wondering several things:

1) If I filled the tank with RODI, how in the heck is the PO4 that high with me doing water changes every couple of weeks
2) What could be causing the high PO4
and finally
3) Could the high PO4 be causing my plant issues?


Thanks in Advance

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post #2 of 41 (permalink) Old 01-01-2020, 01:32 AM
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Your plants are doing poorly because your nitrates are zero. No idea why your phosphates are so high, but I would add nitrate and potassium to get them growing again.
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post #3 of 41 (permalink) Old 01-01-2020, 01:42 AM
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Your test shows zero nitrate in the tank. That's a problem right there. Typical target values are nitrate 10 to 40 ppm, phosphate one tenth of nitrate (1 to 4 ppm).

I am as puzzled as you why the nitrate is zero and the phosphate is so high. That much phosphate in water that hard is going to come close to precipitating calcium phosphate. Does your water ever get cloudy, particularly in the mornings when the lights first go on?

If the phosphate is really that high, it could be interfering with absorption of other nutrients. The loss of older leaves, and yellow color in all leaves, is consistent with severely inadequate nitrate.

How are you testing for nitrate and phosphate?
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post #4 of 41 (permalink) Old 01-01-2020, 01:50 AM Thread Starter
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Your plants are doing poorly because your nitrates are zero. No idea why your phosphates are so high, but I would add nitrate and potassium to get them growing again.
Mark - Thank you for your quick reply.

OK, I think I totally misunderstood some things that I read HERE about Nitrates. I understood that you want them to or near zero or you will get algae blooms (something that I have had issues with)

Quote:
Still, nitrate concentrations of just a few parts per million can lead to massive algal blooms. These may occur as either planktonic (e.g., "green water") or benthic (e.g., film or slime) blooms.
Quote:
Consequently, one should use only purified water for replacement or top-off, be certain that any products used in the water are nitrate-free, and then, follow that big one: feed your fish sparingly!
and that it can damage your fish:

Quote:
Over time, at just 30 ppm, nitrate can negatively impact cell development in both fishes and invertebrates. Lethargy, poor color, poor immune system and weakened feeding response are all signs of nitrate poisoning.
Most professional aquarists contend that nitrate concentrations should never exceed 20 ppm but are much more safely maintained below 10 ppm.

Is this information incorrect? And if it is incorrect, what target should I set to my Nitrates to get my plants back on track?

And on the Phosphates, is that level ok in the tank?

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Originally Posted by kgbudge View Post
Your test shows zero nitrate in the tank. That's a problem right there. Typical target values are nitrate 10 to 40 ppm, phosphate one tenth of nitrate (1 to 4 ppm).

I am as puzzled as you why the nitrate is zero and the phosphate is so high. That much phosphate in water that hard is going to come close to precipitating calcium phosphate. Does your water ever get cloudy, particularly in the mornings when the lights first go on?
My water is never cloudy and I have never seen it cloudy at all, ever but the tank is only six months old.


Quote:
How are you testing for nitrate and phosphate?
I am using the API test kits for all of my water testing.

Should I concentrate on getting my PO4 down and if so, is water changes the only way to make that happen? How much of a water change is too much? 20%, 30%, 50%?

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post #5 of 41 (permalink) Old 01-01-2020, 02:15 AM
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I'm very doubtful of your po4 number. How are you testing. How much PAR do you have (can't see graph.)


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post #6 of 41 (permalink) Old 01-01-2020, 02:40 AM
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Originally Posted by MD500_Pilot View Post
Mark - Thank you for your quick reply.

OK, I think I totally misunderstood some things that I read HERE about Nitrates. I understood that you want them to or near zero or you will get algae blooms (something that I have had issues with)





and that it can damage your fish:




Is this information incorrect? And if it is incorrect, what target should I set to my Nitrates to get my plants back on track?

And on the Phosphates, is that level ok in the tank?
Unfortunately, the article you cite is a mishmash of advice for reef tanks and planted tanks and it is not always clear which one the author is talking about. It is true reef keepers strive to keep nitrates as low as possible to prevent nuisance algae from overgrowing and smothering coral, but planted tank keepers try to maintain nitrate at ~5-10 ppm to ensure good plant growth, which inhibits algae.

I am skeptical as to your measured phosphates, as I just don’t see the source. Are you also adding a phosphate-based buffer, e.g., pH Down?

If you add nitrates, your phosphates should go down as your plants take it up and grow. Water changes are always a good routine for general aquarium husbandry, and between plant growth and water changes, your phosphates should go down. Once they get below 1-2 ppm, you will need to add them as part of a regular fertilization regime.

Last edited by Mark Fisher; 01-01-2020 at 02:54 AM. Reason: Multiple quotes
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post #7 of 41 (permalink) Old 01-01-2020, 03:38 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark Fisher View Post
Unfortunately, the article you cite is a mishmash of advice for reef tanks and planted tanks and it is not always clear which one the author is talking about. It is true reef keepers strive to keep nitrates as low as possible to prevent nuisance algae from overgrowing and smothering coral, but planted tank keepers try to maintain nitrate at ~5-10 ppm to ensure good plant growth, which inhibits algae.
OK, Understood, I did not realize that he was addressing saltwater reefs and not freshwater. So I should shoot for 5-10 PPM Nitrates for the plants as a good starting point, correct? My light meter is showing 4 PAR at 4,500k.

Quote:
I am skeptical as to your measured phosphates, as I just don’t see the source. Are you also adding a phosphate-based buffer, e.g., pH Down?
This is what I am using to test the water. I ran the test twice on my tank water, and also ran it against my tap water and my RODI water source for my tank. Both my tap and RODI registered at the very bottom of the scale (0 for RODI and .25 for my tap):




I was told by my local fish store to try and keep my pH right at around 7 so when it bumped to 7.3 I added Seachem Neutral Regulator. It says it contains phosphate buffers. I have only used it twice in the six months I have had the tank.

Quote:
If you add nitrates, your phosphates should go down as your plants take it up and grow. Water changes are always a good routine for general aquarium husbandry, and between plant growth and water changes, your phosphates should go down. Once they get below 1-2 ppm, you will need to add them as part of a regular fertilization regime.
OK, I have seen a lot of different suggestions for water changes. What should I target? I am currently doing about a 10-gallon water change with full RODI every couple of weeks. Also, I was told not to vacuum my substrate as my plants would need all of that material to grow, could that be where my PO4 is coming from for some reason and should I be vacuuming my substrate?

And finally, what is the recommended method to add Nitrates? Everything I am finding is about how to reduce nitrates!

And more finally - thank you all for all the great information, I really do appreciate you guys taking your time on New Year's Eve to help me out!


Oh, just ran the test a third time:

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Last edited by MD500_Pilot; 01-01-2020 at 03:52 AM. Reason: Added third test results
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post #8 of 41 (permalink) Old 01-01-2020, 03:51 AM
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Those leafless stems most likely indicate a lack of a mobile nutrient.
It is certainly not PO4, but most likely nitrate and potassium are @ zero.
To maintain a little growth on tops it's just sucking the life right out of the stem.

There could even be an Fe deficiency since pH is just above 7 and phosphates are so high.
If Fe dosing is gluconate it may combine quickly with phosphates and not very usable by plants.

I would not be alarmed with PO4 @ 12ppm but I'd recommend a 50% WC to cut it @ least in half.

Maybe move to a DTPA Fe supplement.

I typed in Nitromax and got this "The Shocking Facts About Top Male Enhancement Supplements" not to mention 5 or 6 different fertilizers.
So I don't know what's in Nitromax.
Is Nitromax an aquatic plant fertilizer?

Fresh Trace???

If you are adding RODI water how are you mineralizing it?
Take it you are using enough tap water to blend it?



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post #9 of 41 (permalink) Old 01-01-2020, 04:06 AM
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A super simple way to do the ferts would be to use an all in one solution.
The all in one solution that I linked contains both macro and micro ferts required and it also allows for use with low and high tech setups.
You can also mix your own ferts using dry ferts, but it is slightly more involved then the AIO solution.

The level of ferts is a pretty hot topic in the planted aquarium scene. There are some that believe that high amounts of water column fertilization causes plants to be stunted or to not grow well.
And then there are people who follow the EI method of dosing ferts which is basically where you flood the aquarium with an excess of nutrients and the plants take what they need when they need it.

Both have their merits and it all really comes down to what works for you.

Personally I use the EI method with my nitrate target around 20ppm dosed over 7 days (about 3 ppm dosed each day)
This works for me as I like my plants growing fast, however for those that need plants to grow slower a lower amount of nitrates dosed would allow that to happen.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Maryland Guppy View Post
Those leafless stems most likely indicate a lack of a mobile nutrient.
It is certainly not PO4, but most likely nitrate and potassium are @ zero.
To maintain a little growth on tops it's just sucking the life right out of the stem.

There could even be an Fe deficiency since pH is just above 7 and phosphates are so high.
If Fe dosing is gluconate it may combine quickly with phosphates and not very usable by plants.

I would not be alarmed with PO4 @ 12ppm but I'd recommend a 50% WC to cut it @ least in half.

Maybe move to a DTPA Fe supplement.

I typed in Nitromax and got this "The Shocking Facts About Top Male Enhancement Supplements" not to mention 5 or 6 different fertilizers.
So I don't know what's in Nitromax.
Is Nitromax an aquatic plant fertilizer?

Fresh Trace???
HAHAH, not that Nitromax. This is the stuff I am using on a regular basis:

Nitromax
Quote:
Maximum-Density Live Nitrifying Bacteria

Highly concentrated, pure blend of nitrosomonas and nitrobacter bacteria for super-quick cycling and establishment of biological filter. Non-Pathogenic. No heterotrophic “filter” bacteria. More than four times the amount of nitrifyers than other product on the market.


I use this every time I do a water change.

Then I use Fresh Trace and Flourish Trace twice per week per the instructions on the container:



Seachem Fresh Trace
Quote:
Fresh Trace™ supplies a broad range of trace elements demonstrated to be necessary for proper fish health and growth.

Seachem Flourish Trace
Quote:
Flourish Trace™ supplies a broad range of trace elements demonstrated to be necessary for proper plant health and growth (see below for signs of deficiencies). Trace elements are normally depleted by utilization, oxidation and precipitation. The latter two processes occur more rapidly than with other micronutrients. This makes it important to restore trace elements on a regular basis. Flourish Trace™ is safe for invertebrates such as shrimp.
Quote:
If you are adding RODI water how are you mineralizing it?
Take it you are using enough tap water to blend it?
I never add tap water since our water here in Phoenix is not the best. I purchased Seachem Equilibrium at someone's suggestion but since it says it is designed to raise GH while restoring and maintaining mineral balance, I have not used it other than the initial fill six months ago.

Other than the Fresh and Flourish trace and the Nitromax stuff, I do not add anything at all to my RODI water when I do my water changes. Having said that, I generally only do a 5 to 10-gallon change every two to three weeks if that.

Bump:
Quote:
Originally Posted by Quesenek View Post
A super simple way to do the ferts would be to use an all in one solution.
The all in one solution that I linked contains both macro and micro ferts required and it also allows for use with low and high tech setups.
You can also mix your own ferts using dry ferts, but it is slightly more involved then the AIO solution.

The level of ferts is a pretty hot topic in the planted aquarium scene. There are some that believe that high amounts of water column fertilization causes plants to be stunted or to not grow well.
And then there are people who follow the EI method of dosing ferts which is basically where you flood the aquarium with an excess of nutrients and the plants take what they need when they need it.

Both have their merits and it all really comes down to what works for you.

Personally I use the EI method with my nitrate target around 20ppm dosed over 7 days (about 3 ppm dosed each day)
This works for me as I like my plants growing fast, however for those that need plants to grow slower a lower amount of nitrates dosed would allow that to happen.
So the Thrive stuff is a super simple single dose solution that would pretty much cure my fertilizer issues (like not enough nitrates)? Or would I still need to add other things to my tank to deal with PO4 and low nitrates?

Also, someone pointed me to this as a possible solution, what do you (or other) this of this solution?

Perpetual Preservation System
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post #11 of 41 (permalink) Old 01-01-2020, 04:43 AM
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I got it now!
Nitromax is only a bacteria enhancement.
Fresh Trace is for phish health.
Neither of these really contribute to plant health.

Flourish Trace is the only plant supplement.
Providing this per week in ppm's.
B 0.003944939
Co 0.000042267
Cu 0.004508501
Mn 0.011975707
Mo 0.000422672
Ni 0.000004227
Rb 0.000011271
V 0.000002818
Zn 0.023810523

While a good product and providing some needed micro compounds a far cry from what is needed to be complete.

PPS Pro has been recommended before?
I would try this route since you are changing little water in the tank.
@Edward is the originator of this and a member of the forum here.
Colin has a fertilizer package here https://www.nilocg.com/shop/pps-pro/
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PPS Pro has been recommended before?
I would try this route since you are changing little water in the tank.
@Edward is the originator of this and a member of the forum here.
Colin has a fertilizer package here https://www.nilocg.com/shop/pps-pro/
This is awesome, thank you for sharing that site, just ordered the PPS Pro package of stuff. I spent a few hours n the Pro PPS site and it really does look like a good way for me to go.
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post #13 of 41 (permalink) Old 01-01-2020, 04:54 AM
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Your answers are making some things clearer. Adding a phosphate buffer to stabilize pH will indeed put your phosphate reading through the roof. I'm only puzzled why it remains high if you are making regular water changes and use the buffer only rarely. There may be some reservoir in the tank that is keeping it from being flushed out. Testing after adjusting your practices will help you know.

Phosphate buffer is not a good idea in a planted tank. pH buffering is best done in a planted tank by having a moderate amount of carbonate hardness, kH. My own tank has dkH = dgH = 5 and pH swings seem not to be much of a problem. kH is the one that matters for buffering, and you want to test it in your replacement water after letting the water be well aerated with room air. This is because CO2 injection throws it off, while water drawn fresh from the tap is very often depleted in CO2 versus room air because of common water treatment practices. API, and probably almost all other kH test kits, assume the water is in equilibrium with the CO2 in room air.

You will get some variation of pH with lights on versus off and with CO2 injection on versus off. These occur in natural environments and most fish and almost all plants tolerate them well. You start worrying if the swing is more than 1 unit over the course of a day. Some (rich?) aquarists run their CO2 injection off a pH meter that adjusts injection to keep pH within a programmed range. The test of us use a drop bulb and adjust manually to be sure CO2 is keeping pH reasonable.

Your tap water actually looks acceptable for most fish and plants. If you want to add some RODI to bring the hardness down a little, that may be a bit more comfortable for some tropical fish used to softer water. Between 5 and 10 for dGH is reasonable. If you want dKH to be at least 4, for good buffering, then you can mix about 40% RODI with your tap water and it should be about right.

There are lots of systems for fertilizing and maintaining water quality in a tank, and most can be made to work well. Plants and fish have a certain amount of adaptability to changes in environment, so fine tuning can safely wait until the basics are right. The system I use is to change 50% of the water weekly and dose the replacement water to my target levels. In other words, if I want 2 ppm phosphate and my tap water has none, and testing shows that levels in the old tank water are close to this value (this is actually pretty typical in my tank), then I add 2 ppm to the change water. Same for other stuff. Some nutrients are hard to test: there are no good potassium test kits for freshwater tanks easily available in the U.S., for example (saltwater kits are calibrated for much higher concentrations) and for these nutrients, frequent water changes and dosing to the desired level in the replacement water is about the only way to be confident you're in the ballpark. The drawback are that 50% change per week is a lot of work, it wastes a lot of unused nutrients, and some fish get stressed by the disturbance; though my 'bows, ottos, ram cichlids, and SAE seem fine with it.

Nitrate should be monitored regularly. You introduce nitrogen in your fish food and your fertilization needs can range from adding a full 20 ppm to your water changes to adding nothing at all and changing water frequently to get rid of excess nitrate from the fish food. My guess is that for the very conservative feeding you describe and a lushly planted tank, you will end up finding you need to supplement it some. Phosphate you can monitor until you have an idea how it fluctuates. In my tank, there's none in the water supply and about half of a 2 ppm dose gets consumed by plants over the week, so dosing my replacement water to 2 ppm seems to work well. I dose replacement water to 10 ppm potassium and add 0.5 ppm equivalent iron as a trace nutrient mix, Niloc.

What fertilizer? Whatever you find easy to use. Regulars here will have lots of recommendations. If you want to fine tune, you will need to add major nutrients separately, but fine tuning is not essential. I like playing with chemicals, so I separately dose nitrate as calcium nitrate, phosphate as potassium phosphate, potassium as potassium sulfate (since phosphate dosing is relatively low, the potassium in the potassium phosphate is not enough), and the Niloc. My water is hard enough that I don't need to dose calcium or magnesium. (I have experimented with dosing some magnesium, since the local water report has my magnesium to calcium ratio a tad low, but I concluded it did more harm than good.) I can give recipes if anyone is interested. But for starters, use any good aquarium fertilizer according to its label directions.

I'd say I made three mistakes switching to a planted aquarium from long-time general fishkeepping: I used a phosphate buffer until I realized what it was doing to my phosphate; I added too many fertilizers in an effort to fine tune before settling on a good routine; and I quite recently realized I actually had too much light in my tank, and my Java ferns and swords and, well pretty much everything, did a lot better with the second bank of lights removed.

Best of luck.
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Your answers are making some things clearer. Adding a phosphate buffer to stabilize pH will indeed put your phosphate reading through the roof. I'm only puzzled why it remains high if you are making regular water changes and use the buffer only rarely. There may be some reservoir in the tank that is keeping it from being flushed out. Testing after adjusting your practices will help you know.

Phosphate buffer is not a good idea in a planted tank. pH buffering is best done in a planted tank by having a moderate amount of carbonate hardness, kH. My own tank has dkH = dgH = 5 and pH swings seem not to be much of a problem. kH is the one that matters for buffering, and you want to test it in your replacement water after letting the water be well aerated with room air. This is because CO2 injection throws it off, while water drawn fresh from the tap is very often depleted in CO2 versus room air because of common water treatment practices. API, and probably almost all other kH test kits, assume the water is in equilibrium with the CO2 in room air.
Got it, stop using the pH stabilizer. I was trying to keep the pH right around 7 as that is what I was told to do, but I have only had to use the stabilizer a couple of times to do that. My "regular" water changes range from 5 to 10 gallons every few weeks. Not really sure if that is enough of a water change, I am thinking that I need to do more in the way of water changes. It's not a huge deal for me to do. I have a nice hose setup that I run to my RODI system which is permanently installed in the bottom of my tank stand. I run a hose to the RODI system. This hose actually has two 1/4" water lines in it, one for the water to the RODI system and one for the wastewater. I just didn't want to overdue my water changes and frankly trying to figure out the right amount of water changes (both in quantity and timing) has been difficult. There seem to be so many variables. I just needed a starting place.

I do not currently do CO2 but I just ordered a CO2Art system and a reactor. We have a full-blown soda system at our house (7 kids) so I have extra 20# CO2 tanks so this was an easy thing for me to justify.


Quote:
You will get some variation of pH with lights on versus off and with CO2 injection on versus off. These occur in natural environments and most fish and almost all plants tolerate them well. You start worrying if the swing is more than 1 unit over the course of a day. Some (rich?) aquarists run their CO2 injection off a pH meter that adjusts injection to keep pH within a programmed range. The test of us use a drop bulb and adjust manually to be sure CO2 is keeping pH reasonable.
I have been reading up on the CO2 injection. If I am currently running at a pH of 7, with CO2 I understand that I should be looking for a pH of 6, is that correct?

Quote:
Your tap water actually looks acceptable for most fish and plants. If you want to add some RODI to bring the hardness down a little, that may be a bit more comfortable for some tropical fish used to softer water. Between 5 and 10 for dGH is reasonable. If you want dKH to be at least 4, for good buffering, then you can mix about 40% RODI with your tap water and it should be about right.
So with my water readings from my tap, I could get by with maybe a 50/50 mix of tap to RODI? That would save on filters for my RODI system, I just didn't want any of the extra crap they typically put in municipal water to end up in my tank. Would it be wise to maybe get a full water test done on my tap water before using it in my tank or are the tests I just did good enough for my fish and plants?

Quote:
There are lots of systems for fertilizing and maintaining water quality in a tank, and most can be made to work well. Plants and fish have a certain amount of adaptability to changes in environment, so fine tuning can safely wait until the basics are right. The system I use is to change 50% of the water weekly and dose the replacement water to my target levels. In other words, if I want 2 ppm phosphate and my tap water has none, and testing shows that levels in the old tank water are close to this value (this is actually pretty typical in my tank), then I add 2 ppm to the change water. Same for other stuff. Some nutrients are hard to test: there are no good potassium test kits for freshwater tanks easily available in the U.S., for example (saltwater kits are calibrated for much higher concentrations) and for these nutrients, frequent water changes and dosing to the desired level in the replacement water is about the only way to be confident you're in the ballpark. The drawback are that 50% change per week is a lot of work, it wastes a lot of unused nutrients, and some fish get stressed by the disturbance; though my 'bows, ottos, ram cichlids, and SAE seem fine with it.
This all makes really good sense. I think I am going to start with the PPS-Pro system as a starting point right now. It seems like a good place to start and I got a good dosing pump for $50! I am not sure about 50% a week water changes, but I certainly can do more than I am doing now, and once I get the tank stabilized I think I might try to mix tap and RODI, but at least with RODI I know what is not in the water!

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I'd say I made three mistakes switching to a planted aquarium from long-time general fishkeepping: I used a phosphate buffer until I realized what it was doing to my phosphate; I added too many fertilizers in an effort to fine tune before settling on a good routine; and I quite recently realized I actually had too much light in my tank, and my Java ferns and swords and, well pretty much everything, did a lot better with the second bank of lights removed.

Best of luck.
Well, I hope I don't end up with too much light myself. I have a single LED lightbar now but my fish store was telling me that they think I don't have enough PAR getting to all of the plants so I ordered a second light. So I would guess if it is too much light I just won't use the second light. Once I get everything settled and I understand what I am doing, my wife has agreed to a much larger tank for the living room so the second light won't go to waste.

Thank you so much for all the great information, I feel like in this one thread I have glimmer of actually understanding what I need to do to get things back under control.

75 Gallon Planted Fresh Water Tank
Fluval FX6 & 406 Filters / 2 x Fluval Plant 3.0 LED Lights
CO2Art CO2 Regulator w/DIY Grigg Reactor
Seneye+ Tank Monitoring System / Atlas Scientific Hydroponic Monitoring System
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post #15 of 41 (permalink) Old 01-01-2020, 05:36 AM
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So @MD500_Pilot back to your title "Super High Phosphates - is this killing my plants?"

The answer would be no!
Phosphates are high and should be lowered by at least half if not more.
Killing feature most likely not.

Starving your plants seem to be the root cause.
May want to add GH Booster @ Colin's site if you are really going to order.

Happy New Year by the way!

I would recommend starting a journal here on this site.
Post your new water parameters after dosing corrections are made.
Keep it all in one place and post issues there.
Many of us follow each others tanks here and chime in as seen fit.
Plus you will be keeping a record of what goes on.

PPM (parts per million) in dosing is the norm for many.
Zorfox or Rotala planted tank calculator can be your friend too.
Single compound or pre-mixed liquids are listed in menus.

Enjoy!!!
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Growing is not that difficult.
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