A beginner question on phosphate


Junior Poster
Feb 17, 2005
Hi everyone, I'm a total beginner to this whole game, and am finding that the deeper I dig, the more bewildering it's all getting.

I have a question regarding phosphate, based on my experiences prior to discovering this excellent site.

My tapwater has high phosphate according to the test kit , and everything I read, and was told by the local shop, suggested that this is a bad thing and the probable cause of my algae.

So I put Rowaphos into my filter, and got rid of the phosphate as far as the tests indicate.

I'm beginning to suspect that this was an error, having started to read the EI notes.

I haven't yet begun dosing as I have a substrate layer of Sera Floredepot and was led to believe that this would provide all nutrients for 6 months. The tank is about 2 months old now, has CO2 injection (what I'm reading points to needing higher CO2 input and using the fish as a visual indicator of when to back off) and 54W of lighting into 96litres of water.

pH is around 6.5, 7.5 at the tap, kH is 4.

Although I do see a bit of pearling, growth is not rampant, and as i mentioned, I have brown hair algae, and some thicker black stuff, not everywhere but generally on the higher lit areas and on the leaves nearer the surface.

Please can anyone make a suggestion as to the steps needed to balance all this and improve things?????



Guru Class Expert
Jan 23, 2005
Re: A beginner question on phosphate

As you make yourself comfortable with this site, you will figure that it really ain't that hard of a game ;)

I would first take out the phosphate remover from your filter.
up CO2 by either using the fishes as an indicator or a slate of riccia

and begin dosing your macros and micros.

Tom has stated in his report that plants go for the nutrients in the water column first and only to the roots when there is a lack of it in your water column.

you've probably been experiencing algae growth because you have lack of nutrients in the water column...

prune your infected leaves, and start dosing EI :)