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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi All,

I think I am posting controversial topic here.

As I had shown in mine tank setup,
http://www.plantedtank.net/forums/showthread.php?t=929361

Once the terrestrial plants grew up, they will be very hungry and will start to strip the water of nitrate, my aquarium plants are starving and ground cover all gone.

So now when most hobbyist may want low nitrate, my setup may need to introduce some nitrate or other fert. How I do it properly, other than what I heard from an old timer hobbyist, who suggest to put pee into his tank?

Pee or CO2?
 

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I just went and skimmed through that thread and this is a reflection of that look through.
BlackTetra asked how you keep the nitrates down/w such a high bio-load(of fish I
presume) when I didn't see any list of fish provided before he asked that question.
Also I see no list of dosed nutrients for this tank(s).
Often I read on here that people are dosing KNO3 as their standard Potassium source
find out that if they have a high bio-load that tank ends up/w a level of nitrates too
high. So K2SO4 is then commonly substituted in equal amounts for the KNO3.
So CO2 is going to use MORE nitrogen/nitrates.
Pee in the tank is actually scientifically sound, were it not for the possibility of contamination from bacteria. The human urine adding ammonia just as fish urine would and this ammonia being broken down by the bio bacteria into nitrates.
But I for one would rather see you use KNO3 to raise it as this removes the afore mentioned contamination possibility...LOL...
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Yes guys...I was thinking this peeing thing could be a new style for us low tech guys...Cheers!
 

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Urine is usually sterile, and bacteria is introduced from the surrounding skin. Less of a risk in using male urine, esp if said male is careful in collecting.

When I was a child, my mother would dilute urine with water and use it to fertilize plants. Heck I remember her using it on the pole beans.

Btw the nitrogen in human urine is in form of urea.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Urea sounds like more direct and readily available to plants :).

This peeing thing seems, more and more a good low tech option.
 

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I know urine can bring ammonia. But isn't there other harmful stuff that burn and kill plants?

My dogs have peed on various vegetation and the vegetation dies.
I have took a leak outside myself on a few occasions and my urine also kills plants (even types of fast growing ivy and other weeds).

Does urine have carbon as well?

Just interested.

EDIT: Oh, on second thought, Daisy mentioned diluting, haha, that might be a reason why the plants die, too strong of a concentration.
What we intake (our diets, even topical stuff absorb through skin?) do affect what's in our urine I believe and that may be harmful to plants, maybe even fish?
Also curious about science stuff.
 

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Urine is usually sterile, and bacteria is introduced from the surrounding skin. Less of a risk in using male urine, esp if said male is careful in collecting.

When I was a child, my mother would dilute urine with water and use it to fertilize plants. Heck I remember her using it on the pole beans.

Btw the nitrogen in human urine is in form of urea.
From what I remember from my biology courses some 25 years ago, urine is indeed sterile.
Is your Mom not a plant expert I read somewhere?
What is pole bean?
 

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Hi Mario, Mom is not a plant expert. She's a retired teacher who loves plants and decided to take flower arrangement courses after she retired. Then she started selling flower arrangements out of her house, special order kinda thing.

I have a biology background (more botany courses than the zoology stuff, but I did that in the 80's).

Pole beans- beans that need to be grown on a support e.g poles, trellises.

And back to urine, there are other things in it yes, if you are on medication, some meds are excreted by the kidneys, percentage varies.

Most of urine is water (over 90%), the remainder is composed of urea, uric acid and creatinine mostly.
Followed by sodium, potassium, calcium, magnesium, chloride, ammonium, sulfates, phosphates. In trace amounts.

In abnormal situations you can get blood, proteins, glucose in urine.
Probably more info than some of you wanted to know.

Oh yeah, urea is used commercially as fertilizer.
 

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Peeing aside, a lot of people use the EI method and those that do are not trying to keep the nitrates low. Just not too high. The dosing of KNO3 is very common. I would say in your case that this would make the most sense. Dry ferts are inexpensive and easy.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Great info everyone... I'll try both science and nature method. I think I'll setup 2 sample tests.

Science Vs Pee
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Hmm.... I think test subject had signed confidentiality doc... I cannot review his/her identity ... KNO3 Will be from off the shelf from LFS.

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Hi all there's an issue.. KNO3 is outlawed here... I can't buy it unless I can apply a permit. But I look around the LFS here.. They only sell Potassium Sulfates... Does this count?

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KNO3 is Potassium Nitrate (N)
Mono Potassium Phosphate is KH2PO4 (P)
Potassium Sulfate is K2SO4 (K), which isn't the same as the Nitrate.

There is Calcium Nitrate (CaNO3), but not sure if it can be used in replacement of KNO3 though, so hopefully others can chime in on what to do.

You guys should have Seachem liquid ferts available there. Look for Seachem Flourish Nitrogen. Less cost effective than dry ferts, but still has the Nitrates you want.
http://www.seachem.com/Products/product_pages/FlourishNitrogen.html
and what do you know, just as we were talking about, this product is derived from UREA! haha

Did you ask your LFS specifically if they can get you KNO3? Tell them it's for your planted tanks. Maybe it's just outlawed to sell in bulk or to the average civilian for some reason.

Maybe you can even set up a extra tank without plants and use it's tank water (that should have nitrates in it to pour into your planted tank. Kind of more hassle, but one method.
 

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I don't want my tank to smell like a public toilet and I think the wife wouldn't appreciate that either. Order some potassium Nitrate from Niclog if you need some.
 
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