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suggested ppm's

Discussion in 'Aquatic Plant Fertilization' started by Martin, Apr 4, 2008.

  1. Martin

    Martin Lifetime Charter Member
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    Hi.

    I've been trying to find specific numbers on suggested ppm's in planted tanks, but I can't seem to find anything....specific.

    So far I've got:

    NO3 : 1-5ppm
    PO4 : 0,5-2ppm
    K : 10-20ppm
    Mg : 5-10ppm

    Do we have other suggested targets?

    What about using different sources for NO3 for instance?
    NH4NO3
    HNO3 etc.

    Is there a more extensive list?
     
  2. Carissa

    Carissa Guru Class Expert

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    Nitrates should probably be more in the 10 - 20ppm range. 1 - 5 will get exhausted too quickly in a planted tank. I use KNO3 for nitrate.


    NH4 shouldn't be added to a planted tank. It will induce algae. This site has a useful calculator...

    Calculating dosages of fertilizer elements for a planted tank

    Iron and calcium are two other important components. My site has a downloadable .xls calculator for fertilizers also, link here.

    Fertilization
     
  3. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    HNO3 is no good.
    Nasty acid that will destroy KH.

    NH4NO3 is bad due to high NH4, ammonia.

    Ca(NO3)2 is not bad.

    Soft water folks use this + K2SO4, MgSO4 and CaSO4

    Do not mess with Fe and trying to maintain some pre set level.
    There is no way to relate it to the needed levels for plants.
    This was discussed at length several years ago between myself and a hydrogeologist.

    He dealt with inorganic sides of the issue, I, the biological plant side.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  4. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    I typically shoot for a target of 20ppm NO3, if I go +/- 10ppm, I'm fine no matter what.

    You can semi limit growth using less than 20ppm, not enough to cause issues with growth development, but enough to slow the growth down a little.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  5. Martin

    Martin Lifetime Charter Member
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    Ok, 20 just seems high to me.
    ack, All this calculating ppm's is driving me crazy.
    how many percent No3 in KNO3, divided by this, times that, equals something else.. lol.
     
  6. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    10-20 is fine.
    20 is just the max amount that is non limiting.

    This is not high as far fish health, you really do not see any issues with fish till you hit 100+ppm's and even then, with warmer water species, not until 200.

    NO3 is not really toxic.
    Folks have little idea how much toxic "is".
    And that's the problem.

    So they associate over conservative fearful risk that are not real.

    Like most things folks do not know much about, they assume it's bad and are fearful of it.


    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  7. Martin

    Martin Lifetime Charter Member
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    thanks for the replies.

    now several places, in books, etc. I've seen a NO3:pO4 ratio of 5:1

    now 20ppm NO3 vs. 1ppm PO4 is nooooot quite 5:1

    What gives?
     
  8. VaughnH

    VaughnH Lifetime Charter Member
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    The ratio of nitrate to phosphate isn't important. If you are going to use the "Redfield ratio", do it with nitrogen and phosphorous, but nothing I have seen shows any benefit to holding to that ratio anyway. I am pretty laid back about dosing phosphates too. If I have GSA annoying me I double the phosphate dosing to see if that helps. Sometimes it does.
     
  9. barbarossa4122

    barbarossa4122 Guru Class Expert

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    Hi,

    My NO3 levels on the WC day is about 40ppm according to my API kit. I think I am Ok with that but, it just worries me a little. Oh, forgot to mention...........I dose 1/4 tsp in my 55g and 1/8 in my 30g, 3times/wk.
     
    #9 barbarossa4122, Mar 26, 2010
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 26, 2010
  10. Martin

    Martin Lifetime Charter Member
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    I had 50ppm NO3 in my mains and I still dose KNO3 ;)
     
  11. barbarossa4122

    barbarossa4122 Guru Class Expert

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    Hi Martin,

    I feel better now. The goldies are doing great, they always did, even when I was cycling the tanks. Thanks:)
     
  12. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    Is this test kit been referenced against a KNOWN stanard, say 5, 20, and 50ppm NO3 solutions?

    If not, do not even bother reading into the results.


    What would you expect to see if the NO3 was higher?
    Just curious, many seem troubled, but I've not seen any risk or issues for any species I can think of.
    No one to date has shown they killed or otherwised harm their fish by KNO3 dosing alone.

    So I have to wonder.........

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  13. barbarossa4122

    barbarossa4122 Guru Class Expert

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    Hi Tom,

    Nope, the test kit was not referenced. I guess I will not bother with it anymore. I was worried that my goldies will be affected by high nitrates but, now thanks to you and this forum, I understand that "high" nitrates are not a problem.:)
     
  14. Gbark

    Gbark Guru Class Expert

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    As Tom says this is BAD as far as ammonia in your tank. Also i would not really try buying this unless you are a farmer, may flag up as bad. :D
     
  15. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    I'm not suggesting not to test, I'm suggesting if you bother, then do it right with high confidence.
    Then you can be pretty sure.
    Better to know .......than not.
    Then you can also say something about your test method and kit.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  16. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    Yes and no,

    At lower levels and with few fish, tougher species etc, dosing up to say .5ppm per day is okay I'd say.
    It's about dose, but I'd prefer to simply have more fish personally and/or feed them more.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  17. barbarossa4122

    barbarossa4122 Guru Class Expert

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    OK, I'll do it right:)
     
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