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[APD] RE: the BarrReport.com - Mixing chemicals

5 w/gal of PC lighting:
Day 1:
50% water change, I add 1/4 teaspoon of KNO3, 1/16" of KH2PO4 right
Day 2:


This is something Bailin and I were chatting about during the convention and I haven't seen mentionted anywhere else - a lot of these chemicals will react, so one should be careful with the order and manner in which they are added. In particular the PO4+Fe reaction is quite quick, forming very insoluable salts. Also liquid stock solutions can start growing bacteria, nitrate solutions in particular, so I would add the following general advice to what you have (I know you do this but I haven't seen it written down too clearly):

1. Try to add everything dry if possible, and allow everything to mix well in the tank before adding additional components. Try and keep the phosphate as far away from other chemicals as possilbe in terms of dosing time, especially iron based trace.

2. If you must make a stock solution, use distilled water, if its a nitrate solution a few drops of HCl will keep bugs from forming, maybe even a commerical biocide like Proxel would be appropriate. Phosphate solutions should have a low enough pH to be okay if added to distilled/RO water directly (these are hard to measure dry).

Makes we wonder if the huge uptake rates people report with PO4 (1.0ppm to 0 in one day, etc) isn't just a reaction with all the trace/ferts we're dumping in. If you want to see this stuff in action, add a little PO4 solution to some Flourish.

Jeff Ludwig
Elkton, MD
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