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Iron question

Discussion in 'Advanced Strategies and Fertilization' started by jbrazio, Aug 17, 2009.

  1. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    EI's targets are 20-30ppm of NO3, PO4 about 2-3ppm, CO2 30ppm depending, K+, above NO3 etc.

    These are basically 2-3x more than PPS/PMDD.

    2x for CO2, but most really have no clue as to their real CO2 ppm's levels.

    And therein lies the crux of the issues for many and they love to blame nutrients....not CO2.......

    I have no issues about PMDD/PPS etc, I know it works.
    I use to use PMDD.

    However, I had high PO4 in my tap water and noted the larger water changes helped. So Steve tested my tap and found high PO4, the high CO2 also helped after the water change from the tap, so I noted that increasing CO2 gave me a similar after water changes reference to adjust the CO2 to.

    Then with testing, we noted that NO3 and other nutrients where removed much faster now. So with increased light, we increase CO2, and with increased CO2, we have increased uptake.

    By taking in account this basic concept, we adjust and add more.

    If you take a basic EI dosing routine, dry powders....then dilute into water and use that entire volume over that same time period, it should be exactly the same.

    Up take rates will vary etc depending on water changes, % plant species of one type or the other, scape and total bipomass, fish loading etc.

    To get around that, good large water changes are done. Regular fish only aquarist do this, they do not fiddle with test kits and change only a little bit of water.

    For an 83 liter aquarium, this takes all of 5 minutes tops to drain and fill with a bucket, I know, timed myself and have had a tank this size for the last 20+ years. Place bucket in the bath, fill with right temp, add dechlor, drain the other bucket, done.

    I'd add 1/4 tsp of KNO3 3x a week, 1/2 teaspoon of Gh booster after water change only, 1/16th of tsp of KH2PO4 3x a week, 5mls of a trace solution 3x a week.

    That's it.

    You can add this same dry ferts(not the traces, kept them alone) to water of some volume and dose that over the same time frame daily instead of 3x a week etc.

    This should be 2-3 more than the other suggested amounts.
    You know EI is a richer nutrient dosing, so see if you can figure it out.

    Here's the article I wrote after using PMDD and modifying it:
    http://www.barrreport.com/estimative-index/2386-old-version-1996-1997-list-levels-parameters.html

    I still had test kits there.
    Some of the dosing suggestions where more conservative, mostly out not having a good sense whether they might applied to everyone for every case due to less testing etc.

    You'll note a strong focus on testing and using better equipment and quality instruments and kits. Steve was one of the first to do so and insist and reason for that.

    Hope this helps
    Still,m for you, it is not practical from a hobby perspective to fiddle with kits when the tank is a mere 83 liters. Those are large enough to dry dose and a easy to quickly do a water change before your NO3 test kit even gives you a reading........ 5-10 gallon of water is not much, you use more than that when you shower, or daily toilet use etc.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  2. jbrazio

    jbrazio Prolific Poster

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    I've updated the table:

    [​IMG]

    From the table I conclude (the context is only the solution itself, not any external factors like fish food that can introduce PO4):
    - PMDD weekly target is around 0.5:0:1 ppm (N:p:K)
    - PPS-PRO weekly target is around 7:1:9 ppm (N:p:K)
    - EI weekly target is around 39:8:28 ppm (N:p:K)
    - If I overdose all methods at the EI level (12ml) then PPS-PRO could reach more nutrients than EI, 43:4:56 ppm (N:p:K).

    So why the problems I had with PPS-PRO ?
    1) I was dosing the recommended 2ml/20gal, this induces a limited nutrient resource for the plants
    2) I decreased the CO2 for the recommended PPS-PRO values, this induced stunned growth and twisted leave's edges
    3) I reduces the lighting period to 6 hours as recommended, I believe this would then reduce the plant uptake of nutrients, but the yellowish of the leaves and the not pearling factor make me conclude that for that dosage the lighting period should even be more reduced

    Well, mainly to reach the same results as EI, PPS-PRO I believe that you must:
    1) Be overdosed by 6 times
    2) Increase the amount of CO2 from 15ppm to 30ppm
    3) Increase the lighting period to 8-11 hours (?)


    OK, I can now see that the extra K missing on the base EI solution comes from the GH booster solution.

    Did you DIY the GH solution ?

    Best regards,
    JB.
     
  3. nipat

    nipat Guru Class Expert

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    So is there iron accumulation in the sediment overtime?. Will it cause problem?
     
  4. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    Not, sure, but no one has really complained either, think about it............Flourite, Kitty litter, ADA AS, Laterite.............all are very high in/are Fe.

    So not likely.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  5. jbrazio

    jbrazio Prolific Poster

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    Well.. I've been on EI for two weeks and things are definitely getting better but I still have that itchy sensation on my throat..

    Got a big hose like Tom suggested, and with it I drain and refill the tank, no pumps, only gravity. :)

    I'm dosing the EI mix every day at 12ml and 10ml Flourish + 10ml Flourish Iron on odd days.

    After water changes I dose around 2ppm of Mg, one time and some Prime of course.

    The tap water have 4 KH and 10 GH.

    I've got a 4dKH drop checker with a very light green color.
    I was increasing daily the amount of CO2 injected until (it was not my intention to do it so) three fished died, then I changed it back a bit.. so I think I've got enough CO2.

    The itchy sensation comes from:
    - My plants have holes on them, old growth mainly.
    - Some of them and twisted on the edges, but they're getting better.
    - No pearling.


    I've done a test with the water change time:
    - If I do it in the morning, like 1h after lights on, I do not see any extra pearling on the plants.
    - If I do it in the afternoon, like 2h to lights off, the plants will pearl a lot until lights go off.

    I've read somewhere that plant pearling only after water change usually means lack of CO2.. but I've already killed some fishes with CO2 ! Any ideas ?

    For the twisted edges, it should be lack of CO2 in the past. I say in the past because they're now getting untwisted again.

    The holes on the leaves can indicate a lot of things, any ideas ?


    Attached goes a picture of them:

    [​IMG]
     
  6. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    João,

    Getting a good CO2 range is tricky, you watch and adjust it carefully.
    You can also reduce the light do make hitting a good CO2 range more manageable.

    Fish might gasp a little, you back off then.
    So you need to be around and watch the aquarium, never adjust CO2 then leave for a few hours. Always watch.

    CO2 is also not just about adding more CO2. Measuring and adding CO2, depending on the system, can vary a great deal. Some are really bad and vary all over the place.

    Each tank is different also.

    DIY and poor diffusers/poor care of disc etc make it even harder.

    To address fish issues/gasping etc.....which the fish are trying to get O2, I adjust the flow to provide just enough surface movement on the aquarium NOT to break the water 's surface. This exchanges O2 very well, but does not blow off and degas that much CO2. It does degas more CO2.........however, I can easily add more with a Needle valve.
    Small price to pay for healthy fish I figure, and then at night when the CO2 is aoff, there's plenty of O2 and the CO2 degasses out of the aquarium to make breathing easier for fish, bacteria also have more O2 as well to break down waste.

    Sounds like the recovery is occurring, but you might need to give the plants more time, say another week or two. Old leaves, and old tips will not recover, but the newer growth that comes in after wards should look nice and different than in the past.

    If not, adjust the CO2 and the current and do the CO2 carefully, watch the fish.
    Look at new growth, in general, recovery from many CO2 issues takes longer than you think, but overtime, the results are fairly dramatic in turning around aquariums.

    Light is good, nutrients are good, so let CO2 take it's time fixing things and letting the plant get geared up to having access to light/CO2/nutrients in good high amounts. Growth and health should pick up momentum.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  7. jbrazio

    jbrazio Prolific Poster

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    Hello,

    I have learned that lesson the bad way.. adjusted the CO2 flow, gone away for a few hours and when I came back three fishes were gone.

    Last week I also changed the CO2 diffuser from a crappy one to a Aquamedic 100 (actually I bought two Aquamedic because I broke one), I now see more micro bubbles but still a lot of big bubbles. I'm now preparing myself to spend 60€ on a ADA pollen diffuser.


    Tom, I've got some doubt about nutrients.

    I'm sure that I'm not lacking NPK due to the EI solution.
    Micros I also think I'm OK.. because I'm overdosing Flourish at 10/12ml on odd days.

    Right now I'm not adding any GH booster after water changes, I dose only Mg.

    You told me before that the GH booster is 2:1:1 (K2SO4:CaSO4:MgSO4), do you have any weight advice for those chemicals to mix in a liter solution ?

    If you take a look at my previous post, hopefully the photo of the plants with holes are now there. Do you think that might be a lack of Calcium ? I saw at the krib that one of the Calcium deficiencies symptoms might be dead spots.

    I ask this because the only nutrient I'm not dosing is calcium.


    Another point, I tried to find CaSO4 sources on my area.. and no one commercializes them. I also found that platter is CaSO4, do you think it's safe to use that form of Calcium ? Due to impurity or whatever.. I'm a bit concern.


    Thanks,
    JB.
     
  8. nipat

    nipat Guru Class Expert

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    CaSO4 is also called gypsum.

    I've found that I could find CaSO4*2H2O from Chinese drug stores.
    It's used to hardening tofu. I bought one piece and use a metal file rub it to powder.

    I've been hearing Tom mention about GH Booster components quite many times.
    And the ratios seem to be inconsistent overtime :D But the Ca amount is always equal
    or double or even triple the amount of Mg, never less.

    Still not sure if plaster can be used (is "plaster" and "hydrated plaster" the same?):
    http://www.barrreport.com/co2-aquatic-plant-fertilization/3080-gh-builder-calcium-magnesium.html
     
  9. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    The ratios are not particularly important to GH booster and not why there is no pearling, holes in leaves etc.

    ^This is a much larger issue with growth.
    It could be a lack of light, but I'm always more concerned with too much rather than too little light.

    I have 1.8 watts/gal and mean pearling after 1-2 hours.

    I have less KH/GH.

    I use EI.
    I have ADA AS and is some tanks, plain dolomite or flourite.

    I do good sized water changes as needed.

    Nothing special.

    This leaves CO2, CO2 is not just a function of adding more till fish gasp, that includes O2, current, level of degassing etc boundary layer disruptions.
    CO2 mist is a good method of delivery.

    There is a fine line between too much and too little, far far far far................more than mere nutrients like NO3/PO4 etc.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
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