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Re:Steve TMG part 1
I wanted to make an early report on micronutrients and see what your views
>>might be. We had a wonderful visit with Claus Christensen here in San
>>Francisco a week or so ago. Claus' consistent observation whether it was
>>the research planted tanks at the Monterey Bay Aquarium, my tanks, Dave's
>>tank, etc. was that the tanks he saw needed more micronutrients. In my
>>case, Claus pointed to paleish new growth of Sagitaria subdulata and Crinum
>>calistramatum as indicators of the micronutrient deficiency.
You may recall the crinums in my tank are quite dark green. Some sag's in
other tanks have been very green without much in the column but with
flourite as a substrate. Comparing the sand and flourite at fast growing
rates shows that indeed there are nutrient issues that are very hard to
handle/control without using the soil as a source of some nutrients, Fe in
particular. You will rely on the TMG more unless you add something to the
soil. Even then I think adding something or using flourite etc will help the
plants if anything.
>>Now it may surprise some of you to learn that many of us here in the San
>>Francisco Bay Area are quite conservative about nutrients in general, and
>>nutrients in the water column, in particular. I was trained by Karen who
>>always taught us to use 'just enough' and not more, and to use our eyes to
>>observe our tanks. :-)
Not me<g>! You well know how much I dump in in my water and the levels have
been all higher than either of us expected.
>>During Claus' visit he mentioned that in his soft water experimental tanks
>>in Denmark he was using much more TMG than the recommended dosage. He sort
>>of whispered that he was using maybe even 3 times as much as the recommended
>>amount, but that he could not put such a statement on the label. He also
>>confirmed that TMG was designed for use in very soft pure water (as well as
>>for harder water, richer nutrient conditions). I asked Claus if increasing
>>the TMG dosage would result in more algae in my tank and he said flatly that
I have found this to be so. Recall 2ppm of iron from TMG in my water at the
Nov. open house?
>>So with a bit of hesitation, 10 days ago I doubled my TMG dosage to 60 ml
>>per week. I have one of these Eheim Liquidosers so I programmed it to add 2
>>ml. 4 times a day starting just before the lights come on and ending a few
>>hours before they go off in the evening. So these nutrients hit the tank
>>just as the light cycle fires up and the plants need them, and they continue
>>to be available throughout the day. Better conditions for the algae to grow
>>in as well, right Roger? That's my view anyway. With a dose every couple
>>of hours at least the TMG nutrients are not limiting, I would have thought.
>>The result: Plants are growing very well and coming in much greener. To
>>use one of my favorite scientific terms, the tank has even more 'sparkle'
>>than before. The growth is not faster, just richer. And to my amazement,
>>there is even less algae on the glass (the plants have always had very
>>little visible algae on the leaves). In fact, almost no visible green algae
>>on the glass after 10 days. What on earth could the explanation be?
Much like adding the KNO3 to a starved plant tank. The algae will die back
if there's the right amount of nutrients for the plants. We just were not
adding enough. We thought adding too much would cause the algae not too
little. Algae will appear
if things aren't balanced **and/or** limited such as PO4 or Fe etc in the
water column. The balance maybe needed more, not less.
How about bacteria in the soil? I report the same thing on my crashed tank
also- no algae on the glass after it bounced back.
I dose KNO3 etc to it, a 20 gallon, also. No fish at all, only old mulm and
snails. It's doing very well now but before,the tank was a mess, even though
I kept up on the dosing,CO2 etc.
The Tank (10 gallon) that gets little/no attention and no fertilizer except
for fish food on the other hand has not had a glass cleaning for almost 6
months nor needed one.
It has almost no nutrients...... very unlike the adding more idea. Slower
growth but that may not be a bad thing for many people. I'll be doing a 50
gallon this week trying the same approach as on the ten gallon.