re: PMDD's and Mastergrow

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: psears at emr1_NRCan.gc.ca (Paul Sears)
Message-Id: <9701291501.AA29385@emr1.emr.ca>
Subject: Re: PMDD's and Mastergrow
To: Aquatic-Plants at ActWin_com
Date: Wed, 29 Jan 1997 10:01:04 -0500 (EST)

> From: krandall at world_std.com
> Subject: PMDD's and Mastergrow
> I'm not disagreeing with your
> approach, or your advice.  But I also know how many beginner aquatic
> gardeners _start_ with high nitrate levels.

	If they have no nitrate in their tap water, they are short
of K, trace elements or both.  I wish people would _read_ what we
wrote rather than using another fertilizer recipe blindly.  Only
add the nitrate if you can drive the tank nitrate to unmeasurable
levels.  This is not difficult.

> BUT at the same time, I
> think it's usually safer for beginners to go the laterite/ liquid trace
> element route, since I ASSUME that most of them will over stock and over
> feed, under plant and under light.<g>

	If they do all those things, I think they are sunk anyway!  Start 
with K and trace elements (I'm not sure what, if anything, laterite does),
and use nitrate if required.  It is not complicated, but one _must_ use
enough potassium, and I think most don't.

> Sometimes we forget, here in the list, that by the time someone makes it to
> this list, whether they seem like "newbies" to the really experienced folks
> or not, that they are already light years beyond the "average" hobbyist.

	I think the problem is that the subject has been something close
to a black art for a very long time.  "Fertilizers" and other additives
with unlisted ingredients, lots of conflicting stories about what causes
what, and an appalling ignorance of basic chemistry have left almost
everyone in the dark, hoping to find a set of conditions that lets
them keep a half-way decent looking aquarium.

	It does not have to be like that! 

Paul Sears        Ottawa, Canada

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