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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've been doing low tech planted aquariums but I have some disposable income and was thinking about picking up a co2 system.

My only hang up is adding fertilizers. I work a swing shift some days I'm home when my aquarium lights are on and some days not.

I'm assuming with co2 you have to add ferts every day at the same time.

Is there a work around for this. Do ferts have to be added every day at the same time?

Or is there a dosing machine that can do it for me when I'm not around?

Any tips or advice?
 

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I don't think it matters at all what time of day you fertilize or if the lights are on or off. I'm not 100% certain on this, but from what I've read it makes little difference. Consistency and making sure you fertilize is more important than what time of day.

Dosing machines seem to have issues and are more of a short term thing, like if you were on vacation for a week and couldn't do it at all.

Go the estimated index route. It'll save you money and there's some flexibility. Just do your research on it first.
 

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My only hang up is adding fertilizers. I work a swing shift some days I'm home when my aquarium lights are on and some days not.
Go the estimated index route. It'll save you money and there's some flexibility. Just do your research on it first.
EI requires 50% or so WC per week.
Lighting can be put on a cheap timer(under $5).
Fert dosing needs to be done daily, consistently. Time of day not so critial.

Being strapped for time and adding large water changes to your schedule may not work.

PPS Pro could be an excellent option for you.
Here is some reading material.
https://sites.google.com/site/aquaticplantfertilizer/home
 

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You never said what size of tank. When I had my 40 breeder I used Eco complete is a substrate, 2xt5ho fixture (36"), and paintball CO2. I dosed flourish a couple times a week and that was it.

So how about describing your setup. :)

And you never know until you try. ;-)

Sent from my XT1575 using Tapatalk
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks for the responses. I decided to go with co2. I purchased a regulator and tank from greenleaf.

I'm going to be using it on a 38 gallon set up.

I already have dry ferts and dosing bottles. I tinkered around with lighly dosing ferts in the past using the EI method in my low tech set ups. I was only dosing once a week after a water change though.

I guess if I can feed my fish I should be able to feed my plants. I never thought of it in that way.
 

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I dose 2-3x week for ferts in high light CO2 and it works just fine.

This whole daily dosing thing is really not necessary, unless you're running a very tight ship in terms of nutrient levels. Just add a little more, but less often. Same same. Combine with 50% weekly WC and don't stress about a thing. Test occasionally to make sure nothing is building up. Adjust if necessary.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Just bought a regulator from them myself. Should be in tomorrow :)
I don't know how long it's going to take to get my stuff. I just went with standard shipping.

Bump:
I dose 2-3x week for ferts in high light CO2 and it works just fine.

This whole daily dosing thing is really not necessary, unless you're running a very tight ship in terms of nutrient levels. Just add a little more, but less often. Same same. Combine with 50% weekly WC and don't stress about a thing. Test occasionally to make sure nothing is building up. Adjust if necessary.
Thats good to know. I'm just going to be growing crypts swords lugwigia lotus easy plants. I have a current usa satellite + led for a light.
 

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Cool. You won't need high levels of water column ferts for that setup. The lowest end of EI range should be more than enough.

If you're making changes to CO2 injection rate, be sure to stick around and keep an eye on the tank for a day. Double-shifts straight after may be dangerous.
 

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Cool thanks for the tips.
Just remember, light drives co2 demand, and co2 demand drives nutrient demand. Turning light levels lower may reduce the speed of growth, but it makes it easier to control algae, easier to tune co2, and reduces the pressure on dosing correctly. I also found it way easier to manage when my schedule was very very tight as well, so it might benefit your situation. Also, a dirt tank with root tabs, in addition to low light and consistent co2 (with a tiny bit of water column dosing, especially micros), made the tank a breeze for daily upkeep.

edit: Also, you can get a decent co2 setup for $100-$150 if you get it right, just watch ebay
 

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I am a shift worker as well and recently dove into the CO2 and EI regime. The only thing I find I have a problem with is the water change. I do them on Sunday's and there is one or two a month where I am in a rush to do it. I always make sure to do atleast 50%, the only issue is it takes forever with the Python on my 75G. Other than that adding the ferts and feeding the fish go hand in hand for me. I take 10 Minutes at the beginning of the week or every two and mix the EI ferts in containers and simply add water, shake and pour three times a week at fert time. The change in the tank from CO2 and EI is worth the extra few minutes a week, you will not be disappointed!
 
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