This site is supported by the advertisements on it, please disable your AdBlocker so we can continue to provide you with the quality content you expect.
  1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.
  2. We are after as many aquarium plant images that we can get, doing so will assist us in completing the aquarium plant database.

    https://barrreport.com/threads/aquatic-plant-images-wanted.14374/
    Dismiss Notice

Automatic drip fertilizer setup?

Discussion in 'CO2 Enrichment' started by jeremy v, Jul 30, 2008.

  1. jeremy v

    jeremy v Guru Class Expert

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2008
    Messages:
    166
    Likes Received:
    1
    Local Time:
    6:46 AM
    Hello, I read another recent post by Tom (today or yesterday) that referenced using a medical IV drip setup for adding ferts to a tank while someone is on vacation. I was wondering if this is something that can be done for everyday use as well. I have seen lots of designs for fertilizer setups that use timers and dosing pumps, but I am trying to find something more simple and hence more bulletproof in terms of reliability and safety for the fish. I have a few things in my mind that I want to ask you all before I think about designing something like this for my tanks though.

    First question- I have heard that the trace element mixes (I use CSM+B) are only capable of keeping iron in a chelated form for a few days once mixed with water. Does that also apply if the trace mix is just premixed with a small amount of water for a drip fertilizing setup or is that caused by some other interaction with the aquarium itself? In other words, is the trace going to become useless to plants (after a few days) from sitting in the drip reservoir before it is slowly added to the tank over a week or so?

    Second question- Is there anyone that has already done something like this and how is it working or why did you stop doing it?

    Third question- Is there anything else I am going to need to take into account related to fertilizer interactions (over time in concentrated forms) other than making sure that I don't premix iron and phosphates in the same premix?

    Fourth question- I am envisioning having one tank of some sort that sits up at the ceiling of a small future fish room and having a simple aquarium tubing manifold that directs the flow of nutrients to each aquarium. Then have an adjustable IV dripper for each individual tank so I can adjust the drip speed and dosing for each tank individually. Then each week or so I just mix up a single dosing of bulk premix with water and add it to the main fert tank, and that would be all I have to do for the entire week to properly fertilize all the tanks. How could I incorporate the trace mix into this setup since it can't mix with the phosphates, or would I need to have two separate setups?

    Fifth question- Is this setup going to run into issues with fertilizers settling or precipitating out of solution in the storage tank from sitting and not being refrigerated? I am asking that specifically, because in my tanks if I premix CaCl2 and let it sit for more than an hour or so I get a thin calcium film on the sides of the container it is mixed in, but I have never heard anyone else talk about that issue when dosing liquid ferts before. Maybe that has to do with my tap water though and not the CaCl2. Would it still do that if mixed in distilled water?

    If there is something else I am not foreseeing that will be an issue let me know. I have never dosed ferts via a liquid before. I have always just added them directly to the filter as a powder right before the filter sponge so that it had to all dissolve before getting through the filter sponge and into the tank itself.

    If there are any alternative ideas out there that are gravity fed and don't use timers or dosing pumps I would love to hear them as well.

    Thanks,
    Jeremy
     
  2. Elkmor

    Elkmor Junior Poster

    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2005
    Messages:
    6
    Likes Received:
    0
    Local Time:
    6:46 AM
    Just imagine: medical drip setup over Your tank... very bad design. ;)
     
  3. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
    Staff Member Administrator

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2005
    Messages:
    18,660
    Likes Received:
    600
    Local Time:
    6:46 AM
    It was suggested as a cheap solution to a vacation dosing issue, it can work, they use them for Kalk dosing etc, but they have their issues.

    Most folks feed their fish daily, so feed the plants at the same time.
    It's not some arduous task:eek:

    I've never been happy with reasonable priced dosing pumps and drips.
    But they work when you have no other options, like on vacation.

    If they fail, they leak out everything all at once into the tank.
    Great way to test and measure high levels of NO3, K+ etc on fish and plants;)

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  4. jeremy v

    jeremy v Guru Class Expert

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2008
    Messages:
    166
    Likes Received:
    1
    Local Time:
    6:46 AM
    Thanks Tom, I think I will look into making liquid concentrates of ferts instead, and then just adding a few drips to each of the tanks each day instead of the twice a week measuring of dry ferts with alternate doses of trace minerals that I am doing now. Adding a premixed liquid during the morning feeding each day would be much more user friendly I would think. How do you handle the trace minerals though, do you still have to dose those dry so that the chelated iron remains useable for the plants?

    Have a good one, Jeremy
     
Loading...

Share This Page