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I think Tom Barr may be right on this algae thing

Discussion in 'Algae Control' started by underground, Feb 26, 2005.

  1. underground

    underground Junior Poster

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    ;)

    Just a little observation from my tank.... I had lots of algae which was really building up on a watchable basis- the reason was I was giving it just over 2WPG, lots of CO2 based on a potted, and very selective reading of Tom's advice, looking at what I wanted to hear and not the bigger picture, but not dosing any ferts beside the Sera Floredepot substrate layer....

    So once I'd been shown the error of my ways I did this: turned off CO2 (it needs to get the faulty solenoid replaced so will have to go for a few days anyway), pulled out some algae, and went down to 18W of mucky looking Juwel tube lighting.

    I can't day the algae is gone, but it has stopped growing like a good un!

    So luckily I managed to get hold of a box full of PMDD ingredients, and hopefully when the CO2 comes back we'll be in business.... Nice one! :D
     
  2. Tom Wood

    Tom Wood Guru Class Expert

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    Re: I think Tom Barr may be right on this algae thing

    You're supposed to give the drugs to the -plants-. :rolleyes:
     
  3. underground

    underground Junior Poster

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    Re: I think Tom Barr may be right on this algae thing

    Oh riiiight..... No buzz like a KNO3 buzz though dude.... :rolleyes:
     
  4. fosteder

    fosteder Guru Class Expert

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    Re: I think Tom Barr may be right on this algae thing

    Do you know what a KNO3 buzz would do to you? Often called "Stump remover" it has also been referred to as "Limp D!ck". Yes, it will create some problems for your love life if you decided to dose yourself.

    Consider yourself warned! :D
     
  5. underground

    underground Junior Poster

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    Re: I think Tom Barr may be right on this algae thing

    Flip, do you mean it would damage my chopper? :eek:
     
  6. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    Re: I think Tom Barr may be right on this algae thing

    Well,
    When the limpness goes away, start adding KNO3/KH2PO4 and traces.
    Crank the CO2 up and prune good and pick and harass the algae.

    Most any algae issue can be almost entirely turned around in 2-4 weeks.
    As long as the algae is not growing, you have time and you can take it slow or go after it agressively.

    I take it slow and let the plants get in better health and pick on the algae slower than most. But I know the algae will succum and how long it takes etc.

    Add what the plants need to grow, then attack the algae and prune it away.

    There are tricks here and there, but this is the same old hat over and over again.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  7. Gill Man

    Gill Man Prolific Poster

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    Re: I think Tom Barr may be right on this algae thing

    I didn't know it was that kind of forum!

    Yes, one of the things on my performance review at work recently stated that I take positive criticism well and take the necessary steps to implement changes. I learn easily what it takes to be successful at what I do. Aquarium maintenance and plant nutrition are no different. I started using the EI last month while still using inferior products (plantabbs) and dosing methods. Today I'm on a regular dosing and maintenance schedule and my plants have literally perked right up just this week with no algae carpet on the inside panes of the tank. Last night was also the first night that I didn't have to test for nutrient levels, I just dosed what I was supposed to dose to keep a 10:1 ratio of N:p.

    I too tend to prune slowly, leaf by algae-covered leaf. Never have I used my aquascaping scissors to this extent. Slowly and surely I feel I am winning this "war" and even started thinking more about aquascaping than how I can beat the algae! Thanks Tom for this little peace of mind and to everyone for keeping the topic alive, understanding that the favor is returned by helpig others who are still struggling. :)
     
  8. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    Re: I think Tom Barr may be right on this algae thing

    Well in a few years many of the new folks will telling me what doesn't or does work and that I have it all wrong, then about 5-10 years from now they come back and agree and understand what I was doing back then.

    New folks are often more willing to to do something.
    Folks with some knowledge often go, "I think it does have to be that way, I think I can do this......"

    Then they learn over time and come around.

    Amano, Tropica and myself agree far more than many think.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  9. Wö£fëñxXx

    Wö£fëñxXx Prolific Poster

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    Re: I think Tom Barr may be right on this algae thing

    "Re: I think Tom Barr may be right on this algae thing"
    You think?!? :D
     
  10. underground

    underground Junior Poster

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    Re: I think Tom Barr may be right on this algae thing

    :p Let's hope so ;)

    Today I got my act together and harrassed that algae and had a good clean up. My new solenoid arrived so we're back on with CO2 and PC lighting, plus I began adding PMDD this morning.

    I will keep a close eye on things!
     
  11. Wö£fëñxXx

    Wö£fëñxXx Prolific Poster

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    Re: I think Tom Barr may be right on this algae thing

    PMDD? I hope you are not using the original PMDD because it does not contain any KH2P04 which is going to be much needed in you're tank.. :confused:
    You need individual fert's for far better control.. :D
     
  12. underground

    underground Junior Poster

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    Re: I think Tom Barr may be right on this algae thing

    Craig,

    By PMDD I mean a mixture based on Conlin and Sears' formula on The Krib, as follows in this thread: http://www.barrreport.com/forums/showthread.php?t=292

    As far as adding seperate fertilisers, I haven't yet adjusted my understanding to all of this as I'm, a newbie. Hopefully adding 5ml/day of that solution will have the bases covered.

    (I have plenty of dry chemical left for the future)...
     
  13. Greg Watson

    Greg Watson Administrator
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    Re: I think Tom Barr may be right on this algae thing

    First, let me say that I am a hardcore "defender of the faith" of what I consider to be the PMDD Philosophy ... a philosophy that teaches us to feed our plants ... and to feed our plants the right ratio of nutrients to meet the unique nutrient uptake requirements of each of our unique tanks ....

    The original Sears/Conlin paper describes a strategy to limit algae by limiting one of the three macro nutrients (typically phosphate) ... while this "premise" has been disproven as false, it doesn't distract from what I consider to be the primary philosophy to "feed our plants the right ratio of nutrients to meet the unique nutrient uptake requirements" of our tanks ...

    So in *that* philosophical context ... I think what the PMDD approach did so very wonderfully for so very many years, was to teach us to feed our plants ...

    Will you be successful if you follow that philosophy ... absolutely ...

    Might things be a little bit better if you also dose some phopshpate ... absolutely ...

    And Craig ... By dosing the way you outlined in the thread you referenced ... you are already ahead of 90% of the people with planted aquariums .... because you are feeding your plants ...

    There are lots of 'right' ways of doing things ... as long as you are feeding your plants ...

    Most of us here will probably feel that you will be a little better off if eventually you also start to add a little phosphate to your dosing routine ... but don't let that distract you from "doing the right thing ... i.e. feeding your plants" ...

    And if over time we can convince you to include phosphate in your dosing routine ... wonderful ... if not ... you are still ahead of 90% if you feed your plants ...

    I'll address my "heresy" in my next message ...

    Greg
     
  14. Greg Watson

    Greg Watson Administrator
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    Re: I think Tom Barr may be right on this algae thing

    Wolfen:

    I'd like to address my "heresy" in my message above ...

    When you use the word "PMDD" you are probably seeing a 'recipe' ... that does not include Phosphate ...

    When I see the word "PMDD" I am seeing a philosophy that advocates feeding my plants ... a philosophy that is based on a principle that I need to adjust the ratio of the various fertilizers to meet the unique nutrient uptake requirements of my plants ...

    The "recipe" was only meant to be a "starting" point ... it is and was a good beginning reference point ... this 'recipe' so to speak was described as dynamic, specifically described as needing to be adjusted to meet the unique nutrient uptake requirements of your tank ...

    So for years ... if I dosed a PMDD style recipe and adjusted the ratio of ingredients up or down depending upon my plant needs ... I was following a PMDD Philosphy ...

    And for years ... in the absence of other "named" strategies, when I dosed these same macro nutrients separately from these same micro nutrients on the same day ... I was still essentially following a PMDD philosophy ...

    And for years ... in the absence of other "named" strategies, when I dosed these same macro nutrients separately from these same micro nutrients on different days ... I was still essentially following a PMDD philosphy ...

    A philosphy of feeding my plants ... a philosphy of feeding my plants the right ratio of nutrients to meet their needs ...

    And when Tom told me to quadruple my traces ... in the absence "other" names strategies, I adjusted "the ratio of nutrients" to meet my plants nutrient needs ...

    And when Tom told me to add phosphate to help bring out the reds ... in the absence of other "named" strategies ... I fed my plants the nutrients that they needed to meet their nutrient uptake requirements ...

    So ... the original PMDD Philosophy is not a fixed recipe ... both Sears and Conlin were reluctant to publish a "recipe" in their paper because they knew that many people would only see the recipe and not any of the rest of their work ...

    Over time ... Tom and others have done the testing and observation to broaden our scientific understanding ...

    Through the efforts of people like Tom ... we now have a better understanding ... and a lot of myths have been dispelled and assumptions disproven ...

    One of those assumptions that has been disproven is the Sears Conlin assumption that limiting Phosphate will help limit algae ... clearly, we now know this to not be true ...

    Does this change the fact that feeding your plants and feeding your plants the right ratio of nutrients to meet their nutrient needs is a good thing? Not at all ... especially when you are talking about a philosophy that is inherrently defined as dynamically variable to meet the nutrient requirements of your plants ...

    But back to the years ...

    And for years ... while keeping Discus ... I did lots of water changes ... and because I feed a heavy beef heart diet, between the food decay and fish waste, I wasn't dosing any nitrate, just Potassium, Plantex CSM+B, Magnesium Sulfate, (and Potassium Phosphate a couple times a month) ... I was still following the basic principles of the PMDD Philosophy ...I was feeding my plants and feeding my plants the right ratio of nutrients to meet the unique nutrient uptake requirements of my tank ...

    And for years ... I increasingly did fewer and fewer and fewer water tests ... in the absence of other "named" strategies ... when I dosed these same macro nutrients and these same micro nutrients and these macro nutrients included phosphate to meet the nutrient requirements of my plants ... and I dosed them on separate days ... and as current thinking on the online forums started to change believing that we did not need to add as much Potassium as we had been for years I dosed less Potassium ... I was still following the basic principles of the PMDD Philosophy ... I was feeding my plants and feeding my plants the right ratio of nutrients to meet the unique nutrient uptake requirements of my tank ...


    Then it dawned on me ... what was I doing ... I was dosing the Tom Barr Estimative Index (except I was still dosing extra Potassium) ... so what was I doing?

    Dosing Macros on even days
    Dosing Micros on odd days
    Doing a major water change once a week ...
    No test kits required ...

    Sure sounds like the Estimative Index to me!!!!!!!!!

    Now ... has my philosphy or approach ever really changed? My goal has been to feed my plants ... from time to time, I may have adjusted the ratios of the ingredients to meet my plants nutrient requirements ... and over time, I have simplified the process ...

    So in the *true* spirit of the pmdd philosophy ... I am dosing the Barr Estimative Index ... why? Because I believe in doing the right thing, in feeding my plants, and feeding my plants the right ratio of nutrients to meet their nutrient uptake requirements ... and I believe in doing it in a simple manner consistent with my lifestyle ...

    There are lots of right ways of doing things ... I prefer simplicity in meeting my plants needs ...

    Greg
     
  15. Laith

    Laith Lifetime Charter Member
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    Re: I think Tom Barr may be right on this algae thing

    Greg, I don't think I've really understood the above statement yet... could you please clarify?? :D
     
  16. Wö£fëñxXx

    Wö£fëñxXx Prolific Poster

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    Re: I think Tom Barr may be right on this algae thing

    Why, Yes Sir, you are absolutly correct in that assumtion :D

    When I see someone use the term PMDD I see a fixed ratio like this:
    http://www.gregwatson.com/proddetail.asp?prod=PMDDPre%2DMix&cat=8

    It gives me the impression that said individual is still unsure or unaware of the plant's need's, because, we want to feed the plant's :D
    Phosphate's are just as vital as Nitrate's, and or Trace,
    Just to be simplistic, if we limit this particular ingredient then the plant's will suffer, sooner or later it will hit the fan, unless there is enough in the source water to compensate.

    So. when I see the term PMDD, actually I see "No Phosphates" :eek:
    and it frightens me...

    Personally I have always been a heavy doser, tinkering with this and that, not being affraid to hurt or kill anything, meeting the plant's need's while learning to read the plant's I have experience with, while adjusting this nutrient or that nutrient depending on plant growth/ trimming heavy or lightly etc..
     
  17. Greg Watson

    Greg Watson Administrator
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    Re: I think Tom Barr may be right on this algae thing

    ... and it pleases me a lot when I see you post a message something to the effect of "even greg watson doesn't recommend anyone use the PMDD Pre-Mix" ...I've removed it from my 'store' several times and can't tell you how many email messages I get each time I do it ...

    I get a lot of email messages from those "newbies" wanting help placing their first order and I convert most of them to individual ingredients ...

    Your help and support in the online forums is invaluable to me ... it makes my life a lot easier ... because they then usually come asking the "second" round of questions ...

    Thanks,
    Greg
     
  18. Greg Watson

    Greg Watson Administrator
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    Re: I think Tom Barr may be right on this algae thing

    ... oh I have to get out my soap box every once in awhile ... and Wolfen opened the door and I knew I could trust him to let me walk through it without offending him ...

    Greg
     
  19. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    Re: I think Tom Barr may be right on this algae thing

    I just suggested to add more when folks added more light.

    More PO4, traces, KNO3, CO2..........

    The same principle is still there as far as PMDD and Paul's notion.
    EI is not really any different than that, except I suggest water changes to maintain the nutrient levels based off of teaspoon measurements.

    Paul included assumptions, I suggested they were not true after Steve tested my tap water and added PO4 to a control.

    The work Steve and I did really was far more critical than Paul and Kevin's work.

    But Paul and Kevin, Diana Walstad and other's of the non CO2 vein all have the same approach, thus so does every method.

    They all address the needs of the plants and their growth rate.
    Non CO2 does not need KNO3 dosing etc if you have fish, the waste from that is enough to supply the tank's growth rate.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  20. underground

    underground Junior Poster

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    Re: I think Tom Barr may be right on this algae thing

    So... it's been a few weeks now, and the upshot of whatever it is I'm doing is that have an algae free tank and have done since I started with the dosing. I pruned the heavy stuff and crappy leaves, and added three SAE's which definitely do a lot of good...

    All I have now is the brown 'staining' on a few leaves... :D
     
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