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Re: [APD] K+ Deficiency Symptoms - Scott?

Date: Thu, 9 Dec 2004 08:28:07 -0800 (PST)
From: "S. Hieber" <shieber at yahoo_com>
Subject: Re: [APD] K+ Deficiency Symptoms - Scott?

Also, worth noting, Ghazanfar Ghori at one time recommended
K levels around 10 ppm. I don't know if he still does but
that's the vote of one other gardener.


The issue could be less one of absolute amount than of balance. The basic (called "essential" by the medical types) electrolytes that dominate all cell activity are sodium, potassium, calcium and magnesium ions. They use each other and are required to be within certain ranges to sustain life and proper allow cell transport.

Folks who overdo RO or rainwater find their plants and animals are poisoned by salt. The same exact amounts have no adverse effects if a proper mineral balance is present by adding some hard tap water or something like Seachem's "Equilibrium." As pointed out earlier, a Ca shortage can be seen to improve as other electrolytes are added, but the real solution is to get more Ca in there, and get a *balance* of essential electrolytes.

I discovered this when I moved from Fremont to Modesto. I took some Java moss that had survived nicely in a brackish *Pantanodon stuhlmanni* tank at a SG of around 1.015 (sea water being about 1.025). The Modesto water, at a tds of about 30-50 ppm contained almost no essential electrolytes (only a trace of sodium) and no carbonates (Sierra snow runoff across only granite). [Fremont had a nice balance and 300 ppm tds with 200 ppm as "hardness."] I practically killed most of my plants and nearly killed all my killies by adding a little sodium chloride to raise tds to a more comfortable level for osmotic pressure purposes -- about 90-100 ppm. That is a really tiny amount of salt! Browning plants and sick fish were soon obvious.

As soon as I switched to "Equilibrium," plants and fish perked right up and I had lush green Java moss in just a couple of weeks. Lesson learned: *All* the 4 electrolytes need to be there in modest amounts. OD on one can cause a deficiency of another. Absence of one can cause toxicity, fast.

Just my US$0.02. YMMV.


Wright Huntley - Rt. 001 Box K36, Bishop CA 93514 - whuntley at verizon_net
                      760 872-3995

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