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RE: Aquatic Plants Digest V3 #267

> Subject: tap water phosphates and nitrates
> On visiting me recently my parents were impressed with my tank and would
love to have one.  I have recently obtained a water report from my parents
local water provider - in London, England.
- snip -
> Does any one else have water this bad?.  Thanks.
> David Brooks

...yes, most of us in the UK. Nitrate levels can get to 80ppm in parts of
the South-east. Up here in Yorkshire we delight in a "mere" 40ppm.

I have no real algae problems in my heavily planted 25gal tank provided I
don't over-feed with flake and provided I manage the lighting hours
carefully - there seems to be a major difference with an extra hour or two
each way per day. I use 75W of lighting, DIY CO2, and add fertiliser mixture
(and substrate tablets) on the basis that the better the plants grow, the
less nutrients there are for the algae.

I get a bit of bright green hairy stuff on some plant leaves but nothing a
bit of rubbing doesn't cure. Fast growing plants - in my case Sagitaria
Subulata, Apon. crispus, hygro and ludwigia - seem to use the nitrates and
tank levels stay about the same (or a little higher) than the tapwater.

Yes, even grotty UK water will support a tankful of plants :-) (mind you, I
wouldn't drink the stuff, but it's fine for washing motorbikes....)

Phil Bixby
York, UK