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Amount of Fertilizer

Hi all,

My name is Steve, and I have been enjoying the list for a couple of months.
I now have a lot of questions to ask!

But first here is a little bit about my aquarium:

a) 75 gallon tank
b) 6 x 40 W fluorescent
c) Gomberg CO2 putting out 2-4 bubbles/s
d) about 25 oz of Aquarium Pharmaceuticals Laterite  about 1" under the
e) Eheim 2228 external filter, with gravel and fluff as the media (nice
f) Tank water is GH=7 , KH=13 , Ammonia=0, Nitrite=0, Nitrate=0, and PH=7.0
with the CO2 running,  Tap water is PH=8.0
g) location is Katy, TX next to Houston.

I started the tank rather haphazardly about 2.5 months ago.  After 2 months
the tank looked nice and the Valisneria was 36+ inches long.  However, I
decided to redo the tank completely after I felt the black beard algae was
out of control.  I bleached everything including the plants, and restarted
the aquarium last week.  Only the roots and base nodes remained of the Val
after the bleach treatment (this was expected).  I added 30 ml of TMG the
first day I filled the tank.  There are now 1 inch leaves on the Val plants.


1) How does one know how much TMG needs to be added, how often, and whether
any other nutrients need to be added?

2) Should I also be testing for Fe, K, and P?  If so what kind of test kits
do you recommend?  I don't see these in the LFS.  The ones I have are
Aquarium Pharmaceuticals and I like them.

3) What is the relationship between % of a nutrient in a solution to ppm in
gallons of aquarium water? I think this is required in order to figure out
what amount is needed to be added to the aquarium.  (I just figured out that
there are 3785.4 ml/gal(US), and that 1 mg/liter = 1 ppm, so I'm learning).

4) What amount of ppm should I be aiming for Fe, K, P, and I guess nitrate
and whatever else I should be monitoring?

5) Does anyone have a source for Bristle nose plecos, and SAEs in the
Houston area?, or instead know of a reputable mail order firm that will ship
them for less than $48 a shot?  (I've never bought fish or for that matter
plants before by mail.)

6) Since I used a lot of Chlorine bleach, I rinsed everything very well, and
used quite a bit of Cl remover, but should I also test for residual

Thanks to everyone on the list.  It is amazing how much I've learned from
this list, the "Krib", and your personel web pages.

Steve Pituch
Katy, TX