I am very new to the world of live aquarium plants. I just setup my new 10 gallon planted tank yesterday and I need some help with the water chemistry. Because the water is VERY soft in Seattle, I started off with de-ionized water and used Aquarium Pharm's Electro-Right and pH Adjuster to get the water into the appropriate range (7.0 ph, 2deg dKH, 3deg dGH). Then I added Aquarium Pharm's Leaf Zone to get some nutrients into the water column. I did some testing today and it appears that Leaf Zone didn’t really get the nutrients to the level I was expecting. Currently my nitrate, phosphate and iron levels are all at a big fat 0. I don’t have a test kit for it, but I am assuming my potassium level is also extremely low.
CO2 is at about 10ppm but I just got my yeast-based system going so that should rise shortly. Currently there are no fish, although I plan to add some in about a month or two once the tank has stabilized.
I realize that Leaf Zone was not intended to replenish all the nutrients in the tank, but I am not sure what else to use with or in place of it. Do you guys have any suggestions for what I should add to the water to get my micro and macro nutrients at a descent level? Any suggestions would be fantastic! Below are my target perameters, let me know if I am off on something.
pH 6.5 - 7.0
NH3 & NH4 0.0 ppm
NO2 0.0 ppm
NO3 5.0 - 10.0 ppm
PO4 0.2 - 0.5 ppm
CO2 15.0 - 20.0 ppm
Fe2, Fe3 & Chelated Fe 0.2 - 0.7 ppm
KH 2.0° - 6.0° dKH
GH 2.0° - 7.0° dGH
Thanks and sorry for the long post, Ryan