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NO3 adding

Subject: NO3 adding

>Dear list,
>I'm just curious to know if somebody of you is adding NO3 on daily basis
>into his tanks and, if it's so, has somebody tried to add it directly into
>the substrate by a syringe or something just to limit NO3 presence into the
>water column?

I used to be very careful about adding NO3 only to the substrate.  But in
the past year or so, I have become more daring, and add it directly to my
water as needed.  I certainly don't add it daily, and I _only_ add it to
strongly lit CO2 supplemented tanks with very fast growth.  I don't depend
only a test kit to tell me when nitrogen is needed.  I _only_ add it when I
see signs of nitrogen deficiency in the plants _and_ I test and find no
measurable nitrate in the water.  When I _do_ add it, I still keep the
levels below 5 mg/L.  

I think you should be _very_ sure that your plants actually need more
nitrogen before trying this, and you should fell quite confident in your
ability to handle transient algae problems if you guess wrong.  If your
tank is less than 6 months old, and/or you are a novice aquatic gardener, I
would be _very__VERY_ cautious about adding nitrate to your tank.

Karen Randall
Aquatic Gardeners Association