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[APD] Re: K+/Ca++ and Na+

On Thursday 08 January 2004 20:09, you wrote:

> My tap water is very soft, so I adjust it up to GH 8 KH 5 with CaCl2, epsom
> salts and NaHCO3. I notice some slightly distorted growth in my amazon
> swords, not too severe though, but it was much worse before I started
> adding CaCl2.


What you see as "slightly distorted growth"  might be normal in some 
Echinodorus.  The leaves of some common sword plants are often curved 
sideways into a scimitar-like shape.  That is not a nutrient problem.

I know that sodium alone can in some cases trigger calcium deficiency.  I 
suspect there is an additive effect with sodium + potassium, but I can't 
substantiate that.

It doesn't sound to me like conditions in your tank are likely to cause much 
sodium-calcium antagonism.  In my case the tap water sodium concentration was 
7x the calcium concentration.  In other cases I'm aware of where there have 
been problems the sodium:calcium ratio was at least 7:1.  Your water 
shouldn't have anything near that ratio.

Since you are adding quite a bit of hardness using both CaCl2 and epsom salt 
you should be sure that you are keeping the calcium and magnesium in 
reasonable ratios.  As  a general guideline, the magnesium concentration 
should be less than the calcium concentration.

Roger Miller
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