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[APD] RE: stable CO2
> Given that a stable C02 level is best for plant growth, what is the best
> to achieve this? I realize that this cannot be achieved by using a yeast
> powered C02 system.
Well actually it can and is done.
It's more challenging and yes, you can use a pH controller etc with a DIY
set up or alternatively you may also use a Tee and use DIY with a solenoid
(but not both the solenoid and the pH controller together like you would if
you had a gas tank).
You use a power head to do the on/off cycling instead of a solenoid. This
can also be done with a gas tank CO2 system also if you do not want to use
So, what is the best way using a C02 system? Would a
> solenoid do it controlled by a Ph meter?
That's one way but if you do a decent set up(eg plenty of flow rate through
and the CO2 mixing device/reactor/diffuser and have good current in the
tank) without a controller, you'll find that you get the same accuracy.
Older tanks tend to maintain a better pH as mature healthy root produce
O2=> CO2 from bacteria and organic matter build up have reached a stable
But enough CO2 is crammed into the tank with good flow, the tank will have
a more stable CO2 level even at higher lighting, NO3, PO4, and K+/Trace
But it's not about light really, but using high light dopes teach you a lot
about uptake and balancing these nutrients and CO2.
Take this same knowledge and applying on lower light tanks, say 2w/gal,
good iron rich porous clay substrate(there's 6 or so available), crank up
the CO2 to the 20-30ppm range, dose well, prune well, do weekly 50% water
changes, keep a fully planted tank with a decent fish load, things do
I really don't suggest folks get a pH controller but the prices have come
down a lot, so you can use one if you wish without much cost difference, I
really don't think they are that advantegous but they generally don't hurt
either. Solenoids can get stuck open/closed, probes can fall out of the
tank, other issues like these but other folks might use it for 20 years
without any issues and good success. But it's certainly not something that
you need to maintain a stable CO2 level.
Generally I tend suggest folks to error on the high side of CO2 levels
rather than conservative side.
I only tend to be mildly conservative with NO3.
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