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Dosing Too Rich?

Discussion in 'General Plant Topics' started by csmith, Jan 23, 2010.

  1. csmith

    csmith Guest

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    I was advised that my 10 gallon dosing was entirely too lean, so I upped the ferts as Philosophos and Tug suggested I do. The potential issue I face now is that the dosing was based on my 40 watt CF light. I came across a 28 watt CF light and now that's in use, so should I cut back my dosing at all or will the plants still take in everything I'm throwing at them? Mon-Fri I'm on a split lighting schedule (8 AM-12 PM, 4 PM to 8 PM), which will explain the morning/afternoon dosing. Here is my current regimen. All products are Seachem.

    Sunday-
    5 mL excel, 6 mL N, 8 mL P
    Monday-
    (morning) 2.5 mL excel, 1 mL flourish, 0.5 mL Fe
    (afternoon) 2.5 mL excel, 2.5 mL trace
    Tuesday-
    (morning) 2.5 mL excel, 3 mL K
    (afternoon)2.5 mL excel, 3 mL K
    Wednesday-
    (morning) 2.5 mL excel, 3 mL N, 4 mL P
    (afternoon) 2.5 mL excel 3 mL N, 4 mL P
    Thursday-
    (morning) 2.5 mL excel, 3 mL K
    (afternoon) 2.5 mL excel, 3 mL K
    Friday-
    (morning) 2.5 mL excel, 1 mL flourish, 0.5 mL Fe
    (afternoon) 2.5 mL excel, 2.5 mL trace
    Saturday-
    50% water change

    I was advised the trace wasn't necesssary and I'm only using it up to get rid of it. Also, I have some Kent R/O Right which "Reclaims natural water chemistry (GH) to purified water for cichlid, discus and freshwater aquariums". Is this a GH booster, and if so, would it be of use to me as such or is my lack of a Co2 unit making this moot?

    So once more, is my dosing too rich and is the R/O Right a GH booster/should I use it? Thank you for any help.
     
  2. Left C

    Left C Lifetime Members
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    Hi csmith

    I can help with one of your questions.

    I'm glad that you know about Flourish Trace.

    R/O Right is a GH Booster, but it contains sodium and chloride that can be bad for your plants. As far as I know, Kent doesn't publish exactly how much of each element, compound, etc. is in R/O. None of the other GH Boosters that we use contain sodium chloride.

    From: http://www.marinedepot.com/Kent_Marine_Powdered_RO_Right_500g_RO_Additives_Supplements-Kent_Marine-KM5333-FWADRO-KM5333-vi.html
    "... includes major salts of sodium, magnesium, calcium, and potassium ..."

    From: http://www.seachem.com/Products/product_pages/Equilibrium.html
    "... Unlike competing products, Equilibrium contains NO SODIUM CHLORIDE. Both sodium and chloride are not rapidly depleted elements in a planted aquarium, and, in the case of chloride, can do more harm than good. Competitors’ products generally contain primarily sodium chloride (because it is inexpensive), which will raise the electrolyte levels for fish, but can be detrimental to plant growth. In addition, sodium is not a contributing cation to GH levels. Equilibrium™ contains only calcium, magnesium, and potassium salts, which aid in fish metabolism, but are also highly beneficial to plant growth. ..."

    A good CO2 level will definitely help and it will work with Excel.

    I used to have a 10g in my bedroom that had quite a few plants in it with good lighting too. I used Seachem products like you. I got a deal on a pressurized system and hooked it up. The next morning, all the plants were pearling like crazy. Even the Java Ferns were pearling. This was an eye opening experience for me. I used yeast/sugar/CO2 for years, but I never had anything like this. I was hooked on pressurized then. LOL

    If you plan on staying in the hobby, save your pennies for a pressurized system. You won't regret it.

    Also, are you planning on staying with Seachem's fert products or do you want to convert to much cheaper dry ferts? Should you want to switch to dry, but mix your dry ferts' solutions so that they are the same strength as Seachem's; here is a bit of info about the macros.

    From: http://www.aquaticplantcentral.com/forumapc/fertilizing/45119-seachem-dosing-calculator-chart.html#post336492
    "Using – Mixing Dry Chemicals for Seachem’s Dosing

    Seachem’s products are a little expensive, but they are very good. I know some people would like to cut the cost some and use some of the dry fertilizers that are available.

    The following dosing solutions will be practically the same strength as Seachem's macronutrient products according to the online calculators. You then go by Seachem's recommended dosing amounts on the calculator.

    Dosing Solutions
    - Add 62.2 grams or 11⅛ tsp of KNO3 to 500 mL of distilled water for F. Nitrogen Substitute
    - Add 3.5 grams or ¾ tsp of KH2PO4 to 500 mL of distilled water for F. Phosphorus Substitute
    - Add 51.0 grams or 8½ tsp of K2SO4 to 500 mL of distilled water for F. Potassium Substitute*

    *(This amount approaches the maximum solubility of K2SO4 of 12 grams per 100 mL of distilled water. You will probably need to shake the container each time prior to dosing.)

    Online Calculators Used:
    http://www.fishfriend.com/fertfriend.html
    http://csd.net/~cgadd/aqua/art_plant_dosage_calc.htm
    http://www.aquaticplantcentral.com/forumapc/fertilator.php

    IMO, you may omit F. Trace even though it is included in the calculator.

    I do not have a substitute for Flourish, F. Excel and F. Iron at this time.


    I hope this helps you. Let me know if it works well.

    Left C"
     
  3. csmith

    csmith Guest

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    11:23 AM
    I will most definately be leaving the Seachem products behind once they're used up. I've enjoyed them, and they seem to be one of the better products out there, but nothing beats less money for the same outcome.

    You had a pressurized unit on your 10 gallon? I do intend on purchasing one (once I can make it through the bagillion pages of your thread in the Co2 section) for my 55 gallon but I didn't think them to be worth it for a 10 gallon, given the bottle is bigger than the tank itself. Then again I guess your Co2 would last quite a bit longer, too. Thanks for that info. I'll have to look into it more.
     
  4. Left C

    Left C Lifetime Members
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  5. csmith

    csmith Guest

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    Ah, therein lies my problem. 10 gallon in the bedroom, 55 gallon downstairs. Great idea, though.

    Bump for answer on dosing.
     
    #5 csmith, Jan 25, 2010
    Last edited: Jan 25, 2010
  6. Left C

    Left C Lifetime Members
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    It's an easy fix. Whichever aquarium that is closest to the CO2 cylinder, attach the needle valve and bubble counter on the regulator. This will probably be the 55g. The aquarium that is farterest away from the CO2 cylinder (probably the 10g), don't attach a needle valve and bubble counter on the regulator. Instead, run tubing from the regulator to near the aquarium. Attach the needle valve and bubble counter near this aquarium and you are good to go.

    A Fabco inline needle valve will work great here. For a bubble counter and diffuser for the CO2, you can simply use a Hagen ladder. It will work just fine for a 10g. Pressurized CO2 doesn't leave any residue like a yeast/sugar/CO2 kit would on the ladder.

    On the left is a Fabco valve with barbs to run inline. Don't pay any attention to the tiny Clippard needle valve. This picture is to show the sizing difference between the two.
    [​IMG]


    Don't purchase the container. Just use the ladder.
    [​IMG]





    http://www.seachem.com/support/PlantDoseChart.pdf
    [​IMG]

    I've written an Office Excel 2003 based Seachem dosing calculator that is based on their recommendations shown in the above chart. It is easy to use. Just enter the amount of gallons that you are dosing, hit enter and the calculator gives you the dosing amounts for each day in a week. It is based on the above chart, but it is much easier to use. I think this dosing plan with your 28w light will work fine. I used this plan on a 10g that had 2x15w T8 and DIY CO2.

    Seachem Dosing Calculator

    You can use either of these fert calculators to figure your ppm's should you want to do a comparison.
    http://www.fishfriend.com/fertfriend.html
    http://www.aquaticplantcentral.com/forumapc/fertilator.php
     
  7. csmith

    csmith Guest

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    11:23 AM
    Left C,
    I downloaded and used that spreadsheet for quite a few months actually. Came across it once I started learning plants were more work than very high lighting and flourish. (No thanks to LFS)

    This is the thread where I posted up some problems I was having with that particular dosing regimen. It's where I got the guidance to up my dosing to what I currently have it at. I didn't actually have the current dosing in conjunction with the 40W lighting long enough to get any results. This is why I've asked if a reduction is needed. Would that much of a reduction back down really be a good move? I know it's less lighting, but it's a very large drop in ferts given I have 0 fish to produce waste.
    http://www.barrreport.com/showthread.php/6793-Deficiency

    If you think it is, I can give it a try. Not like I can't bump up the ferts later if I see problems. Thanks for your help.
     
  8. Biollante

    Biollante Lifetime Charter Member
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    If It Ain’t Broke...

    Hi,

    I think the advice from the other thread is sound based on the pictures and your description.

    If there is a problem adjust based on observation.

    If it ain't broke don't fix it.

    Reducing light reduces the need for all nutrients, including CO2.

    Best in my ever so humble potted plant opinion to give Justus von Liebig, and his law of the minimum: if one crop nutrient is missing or deficient, plant growth will be poor, even if the other elements are abundant, the benefit of the doubt. http://www.avocadosource.com/tools/FertCalc_files/liebigs_law.htm

    Biollante
     
  9. Left C

    Left C Lifetime Members
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    I found your earlier post yesterday when I was thinking about what to say. I wasn't familiar with your problem(s). I'm glad that you know about that little calculator. You can modify it to your dosing plan since it is in Excel. If you want to dose more, just enter more gallons or less gallons for leaner dosing.

    I think ]Biollante's advice is the one to follow. When it's working ....
     
    #9 Left C, Jan 26, 2010
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 27, 2010
  10. csmith

    csmith Guest

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    11:23 AM
    I'm confused (easy to do). Are you two telling me to stick with the original dosing from the other thread or the dosing in this thread?
     
  11. Biollante

    Biollante Lifetime Charter Member
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    I Was Confused As Well

    Hi,

    I was referring to the other thread http://www.barrreport.com/showthread.php/6793-Deficiency.

    I think the dosing as Philosophos and Tug pointed out was way lean. However, the Excel seems high to me, may be part of the Dwarf Sag problem.

    There really is no need to split the dosing do to the lighting schedule, you can if you wish of course it is your tank, your home, it just is not required. :)

    It is best simply to pick a dosing schedule, on the high side, then give it time, time for the plants and critters to adjust. Reducing light is in my opinion and experience a very good idea. With reduced lighting there will be reduced demand for nutrients, you can start decreasing the nutrients, over time.

    You can decrease CO2 and/or Excel, over time, sometimes we need to just sit and watch and wait for the plants and critters to let us know what to do and when. :)

    Big abrupt changes are not usually a good idea.

    Make sure everyone has a good bit more of everything than everyone does actually needs, you can always back off if you wish. ;)

    Growing up, my dear old dad used to say, “In the garden anything that happens quickly, is likely bad.” :gw

    Deep breath, now patients, my friend, patients. :cool:

    Biollante
     
  12. csmith

    csmith Guest

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    11:23 AM
    I split the dosing schedule for only one reason. It keeps me "involved" with the tank throughout the day and helps me keep my hands out of it. :) If you'll recall the 55 gallon DSM thread I have in the new to tanks section patience isn't one of my stronger points. Being involved in the unnecessary way of dosing the second half of my ferts when i get home gives me something to do with the tank that keeps me from messing with anything else.

    I really appreciate all of the help I've been getting from you guys. I can only promise more simple-minded questions to come. ;)
     
  13. Biollante

    Biollante Lifetime Charter Member
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    Questions Good!

    Hi,

    Questions are fine.:)

    The only advice I is that if the question or situation is a continuation of another question, stick to the same thread.

    When you do start a new thread make sure you repeat all the relevant information, depending on someone like me remember a given thread or relate a name to a situation is risky.:eek:

    I think you are doing fine.:cool:

    Biollante
     
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