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A Question on Nitrogen Sources

Discussion in 'Advanced Strategies and Fertilization' started by travis, Jan 23, 2005.

  1. travis

    travis Lifetime Members
    Lifetime Member

    Aug 30, 2006
    Likes Received:
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    6:02 PM
    I'm running a planted African Rift Lake Cichlid
    tank in which I have a very hard time keeping up with fish
    waste-derived nitrogenous waste even though I run some pretty serious
    filtration - just the way things go with Africans' eating habits. I've been following the basics of your Estimative Index routine but I find that, when I test for N (using a LaMotte NO3 kit), my tank
    maintains a fairly high level of NO3 (~5 ppm) even without KNO3
    fertilization. Given that, I dose very little KNO3 as it does not seem
    necessary to maintain good NO3 levels, but my plants still show signs
    of NO3 deficiency. I'm fairly new to planted tanks (about 6 months
    experience now) and will readily admit that I'm not a chemistry whiz.
    Given my tested levels of nitrates from fish waste alone, why am I
    still seeing noticeable signs of NO3 deficiency? Am I wrong in not
    supplementing with KNO3 at recommended levels? Is there a difference
    between fish waste-derived N and potassium nitrate-supplemented N?
    I am very curious. Thanks! :)
  2. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
    Staff Member Administrator

    Jan 23, 2005
    Likes Received:
    Local Time:
    6:02 PM
    Re: A Question on Nitrogen Sources

    Well you can add KNO3 for the K+ part, or you can also add K2SO4, which will not add any NO3, but will help the plants use the NO3 that is there.

    Most only need to add the KNO3. You can test this with the test kit and see the NO3 fall if the CO2 is good and I assume you add, KH2PO4, Traces and have decent light.

    If you have everything esle being added in liberal amounts, then NO3 will be driven down. Try that approach. Then add KNO3 as needed. Plants and AF cichlid both like K2SO4.


    Tom Barr

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