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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello,

I am sure you must have grown tired of me but I need your help.

Specs:
Tank - 20L
Substrate - JBL Manado
Light - GE Energy Saver 9w (on box it says 9w = 41w) 6500k CFL horizontal bulb with DIY aluminium reflector with 7 hour photoperiod
Dosing - EI half teaspoon KNO3 half teaspoon KH2PO4 and 5ml Sera Florena on alternate days
Water changes - 3 x 70% per week
Filter - Internal filter 200 l/h with spraybar
CO2 - comes on 2 hours before lights on, UP atomiser diffuser, CO2 is almost on full blast
Fauna - NONE
Flora - Hemianthus Calitrihoides Cuba

Blackout was carried out 3 weeks ago for 3 days. The blackout was successful since BGA was gone but from there on its all gone down hill with alot of HCC melting and alot of HCC floating above substrate since its roots were detached from substrate.

Problems:
1. Blue Green Algae - had it before, did a blackout, BGA was gone but HCC started melting and now BGA again. Half a teaspoon of KNO3 and KH2PO4 for 20L I think is more than enough Phosphates to prevent BGA, yet it is back again. Why?

2. NO GROWTH! Why?

3. Wholes on old leaves. Why?

4. Old leaves starting to yellow but just a little. It sure does not have the lush green colour I am aiming for. Instead it looks miserably green-yellowish. Why?

I am asking for help since I have done everything that I know of so basically no more solutions left!

Thanks
 

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Is there a reason you are doing 3 70% water changes a week? You are essentially removing all of your nutrients 3x a week. EI dosing requires 1x 50% WC a week. The idea is to have an excess of nutrients for your plants to use. If you do multiple large water changes you are removing those nutrients.

Can you take any pictures of the plants? It is much easier to tell what is going on if you can show the plants.
 

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KH2PO4 is one of the nutrients that you can overdose. A 1/32 tsp is a normal dose for
a 20L if you were using the EI Low light/weekly part of the calculator.
The three times a week regular doses are even smaller because they build up during the week(if you followed the 50% water change recommended).
When you use CFL bulbs horizontally, you cut the PAR way down on them.
Normal usage of CFL bulbs in a 20L tank is two bulbs in virtical form/w those clamp on fixtures like from Home Depot for $9 each. Also the regularly used Watts is 13W.
Don't know HCC well enough to tell you how much light it needs so I'll give you this link.
http://www.practicalfishkeeping.co.uk/content.php?sid=3037
http://www.homedepot.com/p/HDX-150-Watt-Incandescent-Clamp-Light-HD-300PDQ/205031467
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Ok so I am doing midweek water changes and dosing EI....some people for the first weeks do daily water changes...I think that after a water change you should add macros and micros...at least this is what I do...am I right?
 

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You are not dosing EI: you are drastically overdosing. It's 20 liters so you should dose appropriately for the size which is 1/20 tsp = 8ppm. 1/2 tsp = 80ppm of NO3 so you were dosing 10x the necessary amount. It's possible the BGA was due to excess NO3.

1/100 tsp KH2PO4 = 2ppm

Additionally, you should already be dosing micros.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
ok I understand what you are saying so please help me to understand how this works. EI is all about making nutrients abundantly available to plants so that they do not have have deficiencies due to lack of one nutrient either that being macronutrient or micronutrient.

The reason why certain guidlines were given regarding the amount of KNO3 and KH2PO4 and Micronutrients to be added 3 times a week, was because experiments were carried out and it was observed that if more of these nutrients were added, then they were not absorbed/used by the plants because of the maximum rate at which the plants could grow.

Now, even if I dose correctly which is 1/20 and 1/100 of a teaspoon, I cannot be exactly sure if the plants use up the nutrients completely or if nutrients remain in the water, thus it is equal to overdosing since in both case nutrients remain in the water if not used up complete. If they are used up completely then I am probably doing EI wrong.

Don't get me wrong, I am not arguing that my approach is the right one but I am arguing that it is not wrong either. My point being is that I have never read any EI articles/advice that state that an overdose of KNO3 and KH2PO4 causes problems to either the fish or the plants or will cause algae of any kind.

Have I understood this correctly?
 

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In the .S. it is a common way to say "a 20 long tank" by just writing 20L
I think some who read this will not know if you are talking about a 20 long tank or a
20 liter tank. The 20 long tank is 20 gallons.
 
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