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Re: Plant Problems Issue#448


You can find some great background info on plants and
water chemistry at the Krib (www.thekrib.com) and
Chuck Gadd's site
(http://www.csd.net/~cgadd/aqua/index.htm).  On these
sites you will find info on KH (carbonate hardness)
and GH (general hardness).

I used the test kit, and tested the KH and it gave me
the following results:
6 Drops gave me the end result color the Manual says
it is 1dKH or 17.9ppm
Per drop so that should give me approx 107.4 ppm KH.

I also tested the GH and it gave me the following
15 Drops gave me the end result color the Manual says
it is 1dGH or 17.9ppm
Per drop so that should give me approx 268.5 ppm GH

The GH compared to the KH is so different can someone
explain why?

According to your results, your water is quite soft
due to your peat and CO2 usage.  Read more at the

I just tested my nitrates and that shows 0 PPM, which
i think is impossible,
so im going to retest that at my LFS. My Nitrites are
at 0PPM and Ammonia is
also at 0 PPM.

If this is true, you should dose a low amount of KNO3
(potassium nitrate) until the level reaches around
5ppm.  What are your light levels (watts/gallon) and
kind of lighting?

A reply to response why peat? i used the natural ph
lowering properties of
peat moss to help me control the ph issues my tank
runs a ph of 7.0-7.2

If you use CO2 you don't really need to lower your
water hardness with peat.  If fact using peat inhibits
one from using the KH/pH/CO2 relationship chart (Tom
Barr mentioned it) at the Krib to determine the CO2
level in your tank.

Now a Question on Pressurized CO2 usage, can someone
explain to me
why i need a ph controller, why i just couldnt shut
off the co2 at night?

If you continue to keep your water soft, then a pH
controller would be a good idea to prevent a drop in
pH.  You can go without it but then I would raise your
KH to around 3-4.  Many people leave their CO2 tank
injecting constantly.

Seachem makes some good reasonably priced kits for
measuring iron, nitrate and phosphate.  Tetra and
Sera, among others, make KH test kits.  Aquar. Pharm.
makes an acceptable pH test kit.

Good luck and have fun,


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