[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

Re: Plant probs (more nutrient questions)

Chris asked:
> Is this a permanent regiment or just something until they start looking
> better, and get better established? I was originally planning on 25% water
> change every two weeks.

Its a permanent regimen.  If you didn't do a large weekly water change, you
would need many, many test kits to determine which traces and macronutrients
were consumed, and how much to replace of each.  (I don't think this is
practical).  Instead you "reset" the nutrients right after the water change.
You don't have to worry if any of the traces are deficient because you have
just added fresh amounts.  The water change is to prevent an excess of some
of the nutrients )that haven't been consumed) from building up.
> Any suggestions on an inexpensive gram scale which is accurate enough to
> weigh these?

No.  I use the digital one only because I have it.  I would use a kitchen
measuring spoon set.  In a pinch you can use 1/4 teaspoon equals one gram.
This is not exactly correct since different chemicals weigh different
amounts but I think you can get started with this.  I will weight my
chemicals next water change and put them in a measuring spoon and this way
you will have the exact amounts.
> Are there test kits for nutrient levels for things like K2SO4 and KNO3?

Well, you would need a nitrate kit and a potassium kit.  I used an Aquarium
Phamaceuticals nitrate kit but now I know that without the fertilizers my
nitrsate is low, and with the plants growing, the prescribed amount of KNO3
is not going to raise nitrates to a dangerous level, so I would not bother
unless the fish showed distress.  I have never used a potassium kit.  I
don't think toxicity is an issue.

What you really need is a KH (Carbonate hardness) kit and a low range PH
kit.  I use the AP kits here also.  You use these kits to make sure your CO2
is in the right range.  I have been using the HTH OTO accessory test kit I
got with my swimming pool for lo range PH.  This is a very nice kit that
correllates well with my AP high range and lo range PH kits.

Remember to keep it simple.  Listen to the plants...they will tell you how
to adjust the nutrients.  You can get really bogged down using test kits.
Just enjoy the tank.


Steve Pituch