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Tom, thanks so much for the feedback.  I've added some more
comments/questions inline.

> This was a level from the paper and is why it's so wide spread, similarly,
> folks still seem to think that low PO4 limits algae and helps the plants
> also, this is not true.
Ok, as nervous as I am going along dosing these things without knowing what
they're doing (not that I don't trust your advice, I don't trust my
inexperience), I'll follow along the numbers and make sure I don't go

> So you can scale up and start with 5 mls daily.
> Do this and the PO4 only ____after____ you have made certain the CO2 is
> good, the K+, NO3 are good and the GH is good.
> GH seems low, I'd add a touch of MgSO4 after the water change only, maybe
> 1/4 teaspoon and then some Ca++, either CaCO3 finely ground powder etc or
> CaCL2(about 1 teaspoon)
Ok, a small addition of salts helped raise the GH up to 4, KH is still at 4
and I'll shoot to get the pH down lower to get the 30ppm CO2.  I've
increased the bubble rate of CO2 from about 1/s to 2/s and will test CO2 (by
means of PH and KH) tonight, tomorrow morning and tomorrow night to make
sure the level has come up.  Of course I'll continue to test regularly, but
what intervals will testing need to be done?  I normally test these things
around water changes and about mid-week to be sure everything is going
smoothly.  Lately I've been a bit obsessed with testing trying to see _some_
change since I've been adding the ferts, but we've gone over that.  I don't
have any source of Calcium in the various ferts I have, I'm assuming it's
important and will look into some sources to help keep that up.  I recall a
post about Ca/Mg ratios recently, I'll see if I can't get that result

> Double, triple check the KH/pH to make certain that the CO2 level is good,
> check the am/pm pH changes and compare to the pH/KH/CO2 chart.
> Be very critical of this part.
> Shoot for a pH target of 6.6(30ppm of CO2), this wille error on the high
> side and you should see better growth in the plants.
Alright, as said above I'm going to take more frequent tests of pH and KH to
be sure of the various levels of CO2.

> GH, low Mg unless you have been adding it with the PMDD mix.
I haven't because it's in the mix (1.5% Magnesium (cheleted)).
My tap water reads 2 GH and I was using salts before to keep it up, this
went sour when I noticed my GH had risen to almost 30 degrees.
Since then I've done water changes without the salts to help lower the GH,
it's now at 4 degrees and I will try to keep it that way around water

> Add K2SO4 right away, but if you add KNO3, you already add enough K+
> you dose very little. Unl;ess you have a very trustworthy NO3 test kit, eg
> a Lamott/Hach, I'd rather see you do a 50% water change, assume that the
> NO3 is 4ppm and then add back 3/4 teaspoon of KNO3 teaspoon and assume the
> NO3 is very close to 10ppm.
Wait, I want NO3 at 10ppm?  I did a test just before doing the water change
and it read 4ppm (it's aquarium pharmaceuticals, not great).  So what you're
saying is do another water change and add in some KNO3 to raise the NO3 to
10ppm?  Up to now I've only been adding the trace mix in an effort to do one
thing at a time before adding in other variables.  You say I should
immediately start adding in K2SO4 now, but not without considering the K in
KNO3 along with the NO3?  Should I start the K2SO4 and try to keep the NO3
levels around 5ppm?  or should I start the K2SO4 _and_ KNO3 and watch the
nitrate level, or something else?  I'm confused on this point.

> Yellowing could be many things.
> Rather than trying to figuire what pasrticular nutrient it might be, cover
> all your possible nutrients with doing regular large water changes. Add
> nutrients back and then the next weeks water change will remove any build
> up. That way nothing runs out and nothing builds up.
> And the accuracy of this method is close, if not closer than most test
> kits, all you do is keep a good eye on the pH/KH for CO2.
Ok, based on this I should add in 5mls of the trace mix, and a ratio of
K2SO4/KNO3 per day while doing weekly 50% water changes.  I already do the
water changes and have been dosing the trace mix, so this should be a minor
addition to the regime.

> Just give the routine about 3 weeks to pass judgement on a Trace dosage.
> try adding 5mls daily and see how plant health does.
> You need to keep the K, NO3, Ca/Mg, PO4 up in a good range ...
Ok, based on your response to this post I'll give it another three weeks,
during which I'll try to keep my mouth shut and hope for the best.  Still
wonder about the K2SO4 and KNO3...

>  Regards,
>  Tom Barr

Dave T.

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