No, I do not hide secrets from anyone and merely because I have experinece, does not imply I'm worth anything either
It's basic EI, lots of fish and great growth.
The tank is easy to maintain and 2 hours per week are all that have been spent on it. No special things, no secret snake oils, no testing needed, just good CO2, good dosing , good feeding etc.
A larger tank is actually less forgiving IME.
When folks have "issues" .....with EI, imagined or real... it's due to CO2, when the nutrients are no longer limiting in any way, the uptake of CO2 is dramatically increased.
This effect is not nearly as pronounced at lower light ranges, say 2 w/gal.
Folks think correlation = causation.
So when they add more NO3, PO4, K, traces etc and this causes the plant to spend more energy fixing carbon instead of chasing after a limiting nutrient, then the CO2 demand goes up.
When they adjust the nutrients to a richer than past level, often they do not adjust and scale the CO2 up appropiately as well.
I know this because when folks do have issues, I solve them.
I go to their homes or help them on line and every time it's the same old hat.
Everytime I try to cause an issues with EI dosing, I never see the effects as claimed.
I can induce most of the issues folks supposely have with EI by altering the CO2.
Folks that have issues with PPS, they carry on and on about nutrients and gloss over the CO2.
Each one of the folks that had issues with PPS did not have some much nutrient issues, they all have CO2 issues.
I'm not sure why folks do not do routine weekly water changes.
If there is one piece of advice to give any FW fish keeper: do weekly 50% water changes.
PPS, for all carrying on Ed claims, is about reducing water changes, otherwise it becomes like the old version of testing and adding as things are removed, that's not new, something Ed never seemed to want to acknowledge.
New package, supposedly "new" but actually very old.
Many folks add nutrients and use test kits to monitor additions.
That method is very old.
It works, we did this in the bay area 8 years before Ed even posted.
But it's easier and more consistent to do a water change and it reduces the testing and calibration altogether, and makes the ranges of nutrients more stable. You can do PPS with weekly 50% water changes and not test, but now that's EI
EI is new because it argues that test kits are not needed to maintain good stable nutrient levels.
That ability allows me to focus on other things light intensity of lighting, CO2 effects and non CO2 effects, without spending so much time worrying about testing and adding each of some 10 or so nutrients.
Adding a non limiting nutrient solution and changign every few days/once a week like this is nothing new either, it's actually standard procudure for having a non limiting control in plant growth studies.
Your tank has high NO3/PO4 due to fish waste and lack of water changes, no amount of PPS is goign to solve that, you need to do water changes, no way around it.
If you add lots of food, that will add lots of NH4/PO4.
The issue with adding EI on top this will not have any effect.
Some might claim otherwise but having done it for well over a decade in many situations, many tap water types, it's rubbish.
They generally blame their on lack of mainteance or changes in the CO2 on EI, rather than assuming that the nutrient demands are being met, then looking at the other issues that are more likely to playing a much more significant role.
This is just something some hobbyists, not all, simply refuse to get and understand.
They have been engrained with this idea that excess NO3/PO4 are "bad" and should be kept low. I'm not saying it's good, but I am saying it does not matter till it starts to kill shrimp and fish which is very high levels.
First these folks whined and complained that it would lead to algae.
Next it was fish health.
In both cases(plants and fish/critters) and for PO4/K/NO3/Traces(TMG, Flourish at least) none of this has been shown and I've explored some rather high ranges, 2x what you measured assuming what you measured is even correct, I do not think you calibrated the test kit correct?
Your BBA slowed because the plants uptake of CO2 also slowed due to the nutrients being limiting. Have you calibrated the test kit and known reference and are sure about it?
I've never been able to once induce BBA in any isolated system with NO3, fish waste, NH4, PO4.
Neither have other folks.
I have, as well as others, been able to induce BBA with variations in the CO2.
Now as far as being new and not knowing what you are doing.
This is easy, the nutrient part that is.
Why folks want to make it complicated? I suppose hold overs from the past(I'm going to hunt you all down
) and fear.
They should be focusing in on CO2, not arguing with me about my knowledge or ability, I already know what I am doing and tested all of this many years ago.
There is variation, but it's based on the CO2, not the nutrients.
Adding NH4, adding less CO2, these can cause algae, not NO3/not K, not excess Fe, not PO4.........
We tried to limit BBA years ago, we used calibrated Lamotte test kits.
Steve tried 6 months of zero PO4 ppm.
The BBA grew just fine.
I tried low NO3, less than 5 pmnm for 3 months, the BBA grew fine.
I changed the system and added more CO2.
I did not even check how much I added at the time, but the BBa went away.
So I repeated it, and the BBA came back.
Unlike Steve, I had high PO4.
So I added both high NO3 and PO4 + high CO2, no algae, lots of plant growth, Steve was very jealous
I'm not holding out here, there's no secret thing I do.
What people have issues with is believing too much in what they see and that corrleation => causation, that's not true and it does not explain the test and observations we can do to prove it's just mere correlation.
I know you are frustrated, there was no web when I had issues with BBA and I had it for 2 years.
And that was on a good day!
The issue with BBA is much more about CO2.
You can go back and add each nutirent one at a time and see for yourself once a tank is doing well and growth is good.
Look, I was having issues just like everybody else, I never forget those days.
But that does not mean I do not understand how you or other folks feel about the algae.
I know more than enough to address any algae issue now, but you may not, still, if you stick it out and keep after it, you can modify things and prove to yourself that adding more EI ferts etc in and of themselves(not other confounding issues), does not induce algae.
I don't need to argue that point, I don't need to prove anything to you either. I already know the answer.
You need to prove it to yourself.
I can help folks go down that path and can suggest issues that will give you troubles.
In general, folks that test more have more issues than folks that watch plants more.
I was a watcher before a tester.
Tom...Thanx for the reply!
I think that you having a 350G tank with 1500 fish an dosing EI, an everything in check is amazing! But this is what you do! You know what to do if everything is way higher than the norm...A 350G tank is a lil more forgiving than the 55, or 75G.
When I started the 75G up, I had a moderate fish load, not very heavy at all. I was dosing EI religiously. The lighting all though was close to 3wpg, could have been better utilized if I was to place the tek closer to the water. Things were fine. I introduced 6 clown loaches. Still things were doing fine. I didn't really feed much, cause when I did, it was just wasted. The clowns were not eating at the time, just hiding. The only fish eating were the congo tetras, an the black neons. They were bein fed flakes a couple times a day. Things were great.
A few weeks later I purchased 6 Wild Scalare's. The feeding had not changed, I was feeding flakes a couple times a day. Again, the only fish that were eating were the congo's an the black neons.
A week later, I bought several different foods. Frozen BW, Color bits, veggie wafers, an started feeding. I can tell ya it was a feeding frenzy! I would break off a lil 1/2x1/2 chunk of FBW, an within seconds it was gone. The next gay was an 1"x1" chunk within 20 seconds it was all gone. All the fish in the tank were eating like pigs, whatever wasn't eatin immediately was inhaled by the clowns.
This eating frenzy was awsome to see, since I knew all the fish in my tank were doin great. I did this for a couple of weeks with no problems at all. Fish wise, or plant wise. I was dosing EI this whole time.
A week later I found BBA....I decided to test the parameters. This is what I found.
N03.....10 ppm or greater.
I immediately did a 60% wc, an brought the Nitrates down to 30 ppm, an brought the phosphates down to 5 ppm an stopped dosing EI.
I have not dosed N or P since then. (bout 3 weeks now) I have done 50% wc every week, an the N stays around 20, an the P stays around 5. BBA has slowed, and everything looks pretty good. The fish however are very fat an happy.
Now if I were to continue dosing EI...My N an P would be off the chart! Whether it be a good thing or a bad thing, a new member might not want to go thru this c02, lighting, feeding, fish load, EI dosing regime.
Tom... everyone knows you can address any situation that arises. Thats what makes your input so valuable. Put the new guys shoes on for a sec...
Might wanna just make it as easy as we can on them. Thats why I brought this up to begin with. If ya have alot of fish, an ya feed em alot...If you dont know what your doing, EI dosing on top of overfeeding might cause algae issues.