Now, in my very limited understanding of planted aquariums, I know the rate of photosynthesis depends on nutrients, co2, lighting and temperature.
photosynthesis is affected mainly by CO2, light, and temp. CO2, water, and light are used in photosynthesis to provide the plant with calories, and some of the matter it uses in its cells. photosynthesis is a chemical reaction (which is why temp can affect it, but it slows the entire metabolism of the plant proporitonately). it is 6CO2 + 6H2O => C6H12O6 (glucose) + O2. the glucose is respirated for energy, and some is used to make cellulose (which is the cell wall material for plant cells). the more energy the plant has (which is limited by the amount of glucose it can make through photosynthesis), the more it can grow.
The growth is contained by the factor that is most lacking. So putting 5wpg of lights won't do any good unless you have the co2 and nutrients to match. Am I somewhat right?
you need energy (photosynthesis, which requires CO2, H2O, and light), an nutrients. nutrients are macros and micros. the main macros are H, C, and O, but those are all used in photosynthesis, and though they make up the majority of the cellular materia, they are thought of seperately, since theyare given to the plants as the reactants it needs for photosynthesis. the secondary macros are N, P, and K. these are the ones people usually reffer to when they say macros. the micro nutrients are a bunch of other elements including Ca, Fe, Mg, Mn, Cl, S, etc. for optimal health and growth, a plants energy (photosynthesis levels), macro nutrient levels, and micro levels should be in correct proportion (and within a certain spectrum, since all 0ppm is proportionate).
yes. i have never heard of an instance where Co2 hurt as long as it was in the correct amount. the less light, the less photosynthesis, the less CO2 is used up. so you will need to add less to maintain the same concentration, and you should maintain that concentration. the best level for CO2 is 20-30 ppm. some keep 35ppm, i keep 30. in low light you could keep less. stability is the most important thing though. flux is what causes algae.
My question is, would I get any benefit from running a DIY co2 in a low light tank? The thing is, I don't want to use any ferts at all. So would I be asking for trouble when it comes to algae if I do this?
I just want to decide if I went to tackle this at all, as low tech person, it's somewhat intimidating. So any help would be appreciated. Again, I'm not going to add any ferts at all in the tank, I would just have the laterite, less than 2wpg of lights, and fish pooping all over the place.
if you ask me high tech is simpler then low tech walstad tanks.