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Re: [APD] KH with no CO2

On 12/14/05, Vaughn Hopkins <hoppycalif at yahoo_com> wrote:
> Now, my question is:  are the plants growing by utilizing carbonates
> for their carbon, thus depleting it?  And, when I add CO2 will that
> depletion continue, or will the plants just use the CO2?  I am trying
> to slowly bring the tank water to at least 4 degrees KH hardness before
> I get the CO2 going.

Hi Vaughn,

My experience is that this problem will go away once you get the CO2 going
provided you inject enough so that CO2 is not a limiting factor.  I monitor
KH in my non-CO2 (Excel) tanks fairly regularly and if I find it dropping
too much I increase the KH with baking soda.  I agree with Dave that
potassium carbonate is better but I use what I have.

I don't worry too much about the rate of change of KH.  During parts of the
year the out of the tap KH here is pretty low.  I just dump in baking soda
to raise it several notches.  Hasn't hurt the fish or the plants that I've


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