Dosing on a 5 week old tank? - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old 08-11-2004, 06:02 PM Thread Starter
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Dosing on a 5 week old tank?

Having been going through the "new tank syndrome" for the last 4 weeks, I spent all day yesterday cleaning up the GSP & BFA out of the tank and have also been keeping track of the water chemistry every few days. I have yet to see any significant amonia, nitrite, or nitrate spike even with the 7 congo tetras & 6 corys... which shouldn't be puzzling because they were never added until after the tank was planted.

Cutting to the chase... The water specs are:
pH: 6.5 - 6.6
temp: 82.1 Degrees (27.6C)
Amonia: 0
Nitrite: 0.1
Nitrate: 2.5
PO4: 1.0
GH: 60 ppm
KH: 50 ppm
Fe (cleated & non-cleated): 0
K: (need to get a test kit for that one still)
CO2: injecting 1bps w/pH controller (need to get a test kit for that one too)

Basically most of the Vallisneria americana seem to be withering away (transparent leaves and then just falling off), and the Echinodorus tennelus isn't doing as well as I'd like to be seeing. Also, I have a strong feeling that the GSA & BFA is going to return in short order unless I get the water chemistry more closly to the ideal range (CO2 18-24 ppm, NO3 5-10ppm, K 15-20ppm).

Should I start dosing for these & micros at this early stage of the tank or should I let nature take it's course, expect a few plants to not make it, add a lot of stem plants to outcompete the algae and wait for another month or two before dosing?

Any thoughts or comments much apprichiated

Mark K...
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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old 08-11-2004, 06:49 PM
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First off, don't bother with the iron kit. It's not gonna give you anything accurate.
Second, unless you're buying a LaMotte kit for the Potassium, don't bother. We all just dose about 20ppm potassium during the week, and consider that 'good'.

You're PO4 is very high compared to nitrates. Your tank isn't done cycling either since you have a .1ppm nitrIte reading. that should be ok for your fish, and will probably clear up in a week or 2 at the most.
Any ammonia is being soaked up by the plants, so no reading.

1bps of CO2 doesn't tell me anything. You need to read this: http://www.csd.net/~cgadd/aqua/art_plant_co2chart.htm
you can already determine you CO2 level...you need no special test kit.

Your CO2 is at 26ppm...as high as it should be. Don't let your pH drop below 6.5.

You're also running a little warm. Drop it down to 78degrees.
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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old 08-11-2004, 07:07 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by malkore
First off, don't bother with the iron kit. It's not gonna give you anything accurate.
Second, unless you're buying a LaMotte kit for the Potassium, don't bother. We all just dose about 20ppm potassium during the week, and consider that 'good'.

You're PO4 is very high compared to nitrates. Your tank isn't done cycling either since you have a .1ppm nitrIte reading. that should be ok for your fish, and will probably clear up in a week or 2 at the most.
Any ammonia is being soaked up by the plants, so no reading.

1bps of CO2 doesn't tell me anything. You need to read this: http://www.csd.net/~cgadd/aqua/art_plant_co2chart.htm
you can already determine you CO2 level...you need no special test kit.

Your CO2 is at 26ppm...as high as it should be. Don't let your pH drop below 6.5.

You're also running a little warm. Drop it down to 78degrees.
Thanks for the info... I will probably go ahead and get the LaMotte kit when I get the $$ saved up. Until then I'll do as you suggest. The PO4 readings are high, but you should have seen them a few weeks ago (pulled a idiot move and added some Discus Buffer that contained a lot of phosphate - it used to be be 5+ a few weeks ago and I'm just now getting that back under control).

I know I'm running a little warm, but the tank is being prepped for Discus so 82 degrees is pretty much at the low end of where I can safely go as I understand it.

Again, thanks for the incite

Mark K...
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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old 08-11-2004, 07:12 PM
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You know that you can calculate CO2 from your KH and pH readings right? You don't need a seperate kit for CO2 if you have those two kits, which is seems that you do

--cich

Plants are gone, but my 33gal and I are back after a long hiatus.
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post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old 08-11-2004, 07:14 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cich
You know that you can calculate CO2 from your KH and pH readings right? You don't need a seperate kit for CO2 if you have those two kits, which is seems that you do

--cich
I do now

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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old 08-11-2004, 07:32 PM
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Sn8k,
I wouldn't dose anything to the tank. From your post in the photo album, I think your plants are barely a week old in the tank, right?
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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old 08-11-2004, 08:09 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ninoboy
Sn8k,
I wouldn't dose anything to the tank. From your post in the photo album, I think your plants are barely a week old in the tank, right?
Yes - plants are 1 week old. They aren't doing terribly but they certainly aren't doing as well as they could. Maybe a good does of patience is what this old fart needs more then anything else.

What about getting some fast growing stem plants to help things along?

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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old 08-11-2004, 08:58 PM
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I thought you have enough plants If algae starts to kick in, I usually float some wisteria or water sprite. It seems to work well for me.
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post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old 08-11-2004, 09:04 PM
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vals damage

I found the vals were very easily damaged in transport, so go ahead and pinch off any whithering leaves all the way down. Don't worry if nearly no leaves are left, it is the root that is important.

If you are feeding the fish, then the plants are getting some fertilizers there.

I suggest you wait until the plants are growing but looking pale and in need of stimulation. Then try root tabs first, before you add any ferts to the water column. This may help ward off algae a bit longer.
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post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old 08-12-2004, 08:27 AM Thread Starter
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Great advice - thanks guys

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post #11 of 12 (permalink) Old 08-12-2004, 12:46 PM
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I always start a tank with a high load of fast growing plants. And because of that I always seem to start fertilizing within a week.

Also there is no good potassium test kit. And as soft as your tank water is you will run into calcium uptake problems if you try dosing potassium to 20 ppm. I have very soft water and supply all my potassium needs though the dosing of KNO3.
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post #12 of 12 (permalink) Old 08-12-2004, 06:31 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rex Grigg
I always start a tank with a high load of fast growing plants. And because of that I always seem to start fertilizing within a week.

Also there is no good potassium test kit. And as soft as your tank water is you will run into calcium uptake problems if you try dosing potassium to 20 ppm. I have very soft water and supply all my potassium needs though the dosing of KNO3.
Well, I think you hit the nail on the head... I just bought the plants I wanted to keep in the tank permanently. On my next plant order I'll go ahead and get some fast growers (Ilike water sprite quite a bit so I'll order a boatload of it ) and a few keepers.

I'll also do as anonapersona sugested and not dose until the plants show signs on needing it. I did order the chemicals I need already, and will keep them on hand when the tie is right.

Thanks for the info on the soft water calcium uptake problems - I'll keep that in mind when the time comes.

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