plant gro - how much to add and when
As you may know I just started growing plants (another just sprouted today!!). I have "Plant Gro" the directions say to add 1 capful per 10gal. Ok, but how often? Do I have to test the water and only add it when the iron levels are low or can I safely add a cap every day/other day/week/month, etc?? Any info is appreciated, thanks.
When I use ferts, I normally add them during each water change. If I notice some kind of deficiency, then I add it more frequent.
Keep in mind, plants mainly need macronutrients, such as re nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P), sulfur (S), calcium (Ca), magnesium (Mg) and potassium (K), with Nitrogen, Phosphorus, and Potassium being the common requirement. In addition, they also need micronutrients, such as iron (Fe), manganese (Mn), copper (Cu), zinc (Zn), molybdenum (Mo), cobalt (Co), and boron (B).
Certain fertilizers only supply a few, but not all. In a tank stocked with fish, plants can obtain some of the nutrients from waste, decaying plant material, even fish foods.
It really depends on how much light you have. A large bioload of fish, at or above 1 inch per gallon will porvide more than enough macros if the lighting is low. My tanks are overstocked, one is a little, one a lot and both of them require dosing everything in order to prevent algae. This is because I have at least 30 watts over a 10 gallon tank and I have a lot of plants.
How many watts of ligting do you have over your tank and what type?
How many plants and what are they?
How many fish and what types?
without giving the information, I would say you need to dose micros at least 3x a week. They are sometimes very high in tap water but not often. If you never see a deficiency and see steady growth then I would say you are doing pretty good.
Also do you have a compact lighting system and if so have many compact sets do you have?
Also IMHO I would start with one dose every two weeks and increase dosage frequency until the first appearance of algae.
Then back off to the previous dosage frequency.
If you have proper lighting overdosage will lead fairly quickly to an algae infestation at best and at worst to an algae bloom.
I'm no longer using Plant Gro, I use flourish now (Which says one capful per 60 gallons each week). Tank is as follows:
Compact Lighing, 4 tubes, 2 actnic, 2 10000k, 4 night leds
The actnic and 10000k are on from 10-10 and the night leds for the rest of the time. I did notive a ton of algae a while back, I cleaned the tank with a magnet cleaner, now when you look thru the tank the long way, you can see about 1/2 way thru and then its all green. Strange. I have been doing huge water changes for the last few days in hopes of clearing up the water.
That sounds like 1.4 watts per or 128 watts but that is a guess. The actinincs don't count for wattage rule but that doesn't mean they don't help. If you have more or less watts from the 2 10k bulbs make sure to let us know.
As for green water, Maybe reduce your lighting to 10 hours a day might help. I have also heard that green water is a sign that you have unremoved ammonia in your tank. I can't confirm this though because I have had green water and not had ammonia that I could measure. Maybe the algae used it up, maybe not.
Try a good debris cleaning of your filter by really ringing it out in tank water at your next water change. Clean the tubes as best you can and it might help. Adding too much iron could also be a cause but I have also heard that excess will not cuse algae from a fairly experienced source so I don't know.
You do have moderate light and I think a larger plant mass would help you greatly unless you have a lot already. If you do, CO2 injection may be your next step.
That all being said, here is what I would try. split your dosing into 3 doses and dose every other day 3x a week. Run your lights where you turn on the 10k first, then 2 hours later turn on the actinics, then turn them off after 6 hours and then turn off the lights comletely running the leds if you want at night. If you can't then just run them 10 hours instead of 12. Clean the filter really good and see if it helps.
Please posts your results so we can make some conclusions for others and try to help more if things don't get better. And try to be specific on what you change if you remember everything you do.
If my responses to the various items in your posts "make you think that I have this 'plant growth/algae control' down" you are way, way wrong as I am still "deep into" the experimental stage!
Also if you hallucenate and think I am a guru quit taking whatever you are taking or start using bottled water!!
My tank is 110G and 30" deep.
Yea: I use Flourish also.
I have found (by experience) that the published dosage is for selling Flourish.
My current dosage protocol is based on new leaf production.
When I observe a deceleration of new leaf production I add 2 capfulls.
Within 2 days the new leaf production returns to it's typical rate and no algae bloom. Occasionally I notice some excess algae on the tank walls for a few days but this is infrequent.
Wrt (with respect to) your tank depth it is what I will refer to as shallow (being either 24" or 18" deep).
If your compact systems are dual (parallel) 36" or 48" you have a "daylight binary star system going on" :lol: :lol:
If your compact systems are "end to end" (serial) 20" or 24" you still have a "star much brighter than our sun going on" :lol: :lol:
The actinic bulbs (which I presume are blue) make the situation worse (but do not change them out yet) as does the 12 hour lighting period.
I presume that they are red but "whatever color" they are they will probably not affect this discussion.
(It would be nice to know what color (or colors) they are.)
With your lighting hardware and protocol you should just be able to see 6" into the tank!
What you are observing is a mild algae bloom!
Please quit (but "taper down" slowly over a two week period and then restart your typical WC's):
1) You are "scr.wing up" your biological filtration digestion bacteria and
2) You are 90% "spinning your wheels".
As you can tell, by observation of my comments, I have been down this path (but still cannot see daylight at the end).
In my "experimentation" the "keys to the kingdom here" are (and some of these may sound "weird")
1) Feeding protocol and food.
2) Mechanical filtration media and filtration process (believe it or not).
3) Biological filtration media type, quantity and effieciency.
4) Lighting hardware and protocol.
I hope this has post has indicated some factors pertaining to your thread which I now know based on experience.
If you wish to continue I need to know:
a) if your compact lighting system is parallel or serial;
b) if your actnic bulbs are typical (ie. a wavelength peak at 420-430 nanometers);
c) your feeding protocol and foods and
d) the type of filtration system which you employ (hope it is wet/dry because this is "what my experience is with" but if not CM or CE can help).
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