100+ppm calcium and nutrient uptake

Discussion in 'Water Chemistry' started by Sammy Islam, 19 Nov 2019.

  1. Sammy Islam

    Sammy Islam Member

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    Hello everyone, i live in Hertfordshire and i have hard water - gh22 kh13. Tap water ph 7.2/3 degassed 7.9/8. Ive read literally hundreds of threads about fert dosing and about ca/mg ratio and relationship and also about if kh effects anything.

    I have a 125l tank with a fluval 2.0 fresh and planted running at 100% and pressurised co2 at uncountable bps with a 1.2ph drop (from 7.9 to 6.7) and stays there during the whole photoperiod. I dose full ei, i should probably dose half ei as i have a medium planted tank but after reading stuff about hardwater and calcium preventing uptake balance of other nutrients i went with full dosing.

    According to my water company average calcium content is 130ppm and magnesium is less than 1ppm, i do add a heaped teaspoon of mgso47h20 with every water change giving me about 5ppm magnesium but with 130ppm calcium i dont dont if thats effecting the uptake of other nutrients.

    Does anyone else have experience with very high ca blocking/unbalancing nutrient uptake?

    I dont dont really have any major algae problems apart from bba on manzanita and little bits of old growth on the slow growers but they get cut out regularly.

    In terms of growth my hygro polysperma grows 1" a day, but sometimes has wavy leaf edges if i add more mg even though my ca is very high, or this this the mg and k relationship thats causing wavy edge?

    I cant cant seem to grow ludwigia palustrias, it grows ok but seems pretty stunted and new leaves look deformed sometimes and lower leaves get bba.

    Im sure lots of people have high ca and would love to hear their thoughts on how it interacts with using EI etc.

    Thanks
     

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  2. ian_m

    ian_m Global Moderator Staff Member

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  3. Sammy Islam

    Sammy Islam Member

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    Yes i have read that many times and understand what you are saying, but i guess i'll keep on reading
     
  4. MJQMJQ

    MJQMJQ Member

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    Your plants sure look ok I wont exactly worry about it.The stem plant looks like it needs a bit of trimming.
     
  5. Sammy Islam

    Sammy Islam Member

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    Yeah that was the last photo i took before trimming, most of my plants are good to be fair but im just trying to understand more.
    Maybe i should have asked do i need to use more traces so they are more available because of my ph and high ca? If i dose iron in dpta form can i half my trace dose that targets 0.2ppm fe to 0.1ppm and have enough micro/trace?

    Thanks
     
  6. Sammy Islam

    Sammy Islam Member

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    So harder water requires more co2 to change to acidity in high ph/kh water? And in turn more nutrients?
     
  7. sparkyweasel

    sparkyweasel Member

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    An interesting link to some research into why some calcifuge terrestrial plants struggle to grow in calcareous soil. (Although grown in soilless culture for the experiment).
    Nothing about aquatic plants growing in aquariums.
     
  8. Zeus.

    Zeus. Member

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    Well your the person who is stating myths, backing up your references to the myths and links that disprove they claims of the poster is only fair IMO, Im sure @ceg4048 would appreciate the info as he has always to the best of my knowledge always provided links to his posted information when asked

    Otherwise we might as well plug into the Matrix and believe what it throws at us ;)
     
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  9. dw1305

    dw1305 Expert

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    Hi all,
    First the disclaimer, I've never tried EI, or added CO2, I just don't have any experience of high tech. tanks, but I tend to agree with @freewolny, low. tech plant growth is often better in softer water, mainly because <"more nutrients are unavailable at alkaline pH levels">.

    Having said that a lot is going to depend on the plant. Some plant species are going to be happy in hard water, and that number will increase if you add CO2, because pH addition
    • will lower pH
    • and not all plants can use HCO3- as a CO2 substitute
    A smaller number of plants are unhappy in soft water and <"require increased hardness to grow satisfactorily">.

    I don't see low nutrient, low tech. or hard water, as problems they just require slightly different approaches. Have a look at @akwascape's <"Cryptocoryne parva carpet">.

    cheers Darrel
     
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  10. Tim Harrison

    Tim Harrison Global Moderator Staff Member

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    That's been my experience as well. My plants very rarely suffer deficiencies even though I've lived in very hard water areas. And I think that's been the experience of many folk.

    For instance, the AG showroom, plants growing in very hard tap water, 333 mg/l (or parts per million) :Calcium Carbonate, 133.2 mg/l (or parts per million) :Calcium, 23.177 °C degrees Clark, 33.3 °F degrees French, 18.914 °dH degrees German, 3.33 mmol/l

    [​IMG]
     
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  11. Zeus.

    Zeus. Member

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    Ok I will try and cover as much as I can, I am not an expert But feel both sides of the hard water debate are correct in what they say but are answering in different contexts.

    My tap water is hard to very hard and I do feel like it makes a difference in growing plants from the fact I dose Fe EDDHA to supply the Fe and certain plants I struggle to grow the way I see others growing them eg Hygrophila pinnatifida I have yet to stop old leaves getting holes and melting :arghh:

    Most of what I have learnt is by reading posts,threads, Wkii, pms and links to some research papers although the later can be had to find and there doesn't seem to be many papers to support their findings which makes things hard as coming from a medical background/degree I I'm use to being able to have resonable access to research via places like PubMed and Cochrane Library which the Botanical and horticultural library have no similar counterparts as far as I am aware, as if I had the time to plough though them anyway :rolleyes:

    So I most go off my 'Peers' guidance and what works for others and apply a bit a common sense until proven otherwise.

    I have been to Aquarium Gardens who have similar water to myself and very nice tanks, Ive also been to Green Aqua who use RO water remineralised and they also have Very nice tanks but the plants are in a different class than Aquarium Gardens. Thats not so say AG are doing something wrong IMO the difference is the water, one is soft and the other is hard and that does seem to make all the differance. The difference isn't massive but its their and it can only be seen by the naked eye up close. A picture cant be used to compare the difference.



    So I agree with Clive in there being very little impact on the vast majority of plants from my observations and my tank, yet the little impact it has is a big difference up close. Yes using hard water just presents a different challenge which needs a slightly different approach but it is doable.

    Again I would say true, he doesnt say easy or harder just plants grow in both.

    I feel you have taken this out of context, I feel Clive hear is taking about CO2 injected tanks and blames poor CO2 implementation in the 'main'

    cause of issues and not other nutrients. Clive has posted elsewhere that non CO2 injected tank dont suffer CO2 problems so CO2 is never to blame

    Think here you ment due to the FE not being freely available to plants due to the pH pushing the equilibrium over to the insoluble side ( we see the same problem with local anaesthetic is injected into infected soft tissue the pH isnt ideal and the local doesnt work) and again he doesnt say its not Fe causing the issue he says in CO2 injected tank the main cause of issues is CO2 related.

    Again I agree with Clive as it doesnt care about KH as I have seen nothing to suggest it affects the speed of which CO2 is uptaken by hard or soft water and 1.0pH change is approx 30ppm CO2 in water irrelevant of the starting pH. He doesnt say anything about whats available on an ionic level at a specific pH.

    However both me and clive do/did use a lot of CO2 in our tanks CO2 used Database

    As what one man can do so can another. No mention of easier or harder.

    Shame the 'High Priest of Nutrient/CO2' isnt active ATM as reading his reply would of been more fun than reading mine

    The debate continues...............
     
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  12. Geoffrey Rea

    Geoffrey Rea Member

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    Yup. The TDS out of the tap came out at over 400ppm when I measured it last weekend. That’s before we add anything else to the equation as well.
     
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  13. Geoffrey Rea

    Geoffrey Rea Member

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    Just a kindly note on this thread...

    The problem with the quote function is it can take an example from any user from anytime. Not everyone on here is posting as if they’re submitting a research proposal on every single post.

    Not only that but knowledge is prone to change and you are allowed to change your mind about what you thought many moons ago, despite the record kept on here. I’m sure even the mighty Clive is out there making new learnings, refuting old thinking and fighting Agent Smith.

    This whole thread comes across as a pissing match and I fear if it continues you’ll see a decline in the willingness for others to join the conversation. Learning (is hopefully) ongoing and enjoyable on this forum. The spirit of UKAPS has always been one of inclusive group learning.

    If you know something, make it as accessible and as understandable for others. Otherwise, what’s the point?
     
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  14. dw1305

    dw1305 Expert

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    Hi all,
    Well said. It is back to <"Karl Popper">. I think we may all have all done, and advocated, things in the past that we wouldn't do now.
    That is it, I think one of the issues with the internet is that it makes it easier to only see things you agree with,and that reinforce a "faith" position. We may <"have had times in the past"> when we weren't quite as inclusive as we could have been and we haven't always given members, with differing views, a fair hearing. Hopefully the situation is a bit healthier now, and that we can remain a broad church.
    I want that to be what everybody wants.

    cheers Darrel
     
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  15. Sammy Islam

    Sammy Islam Member

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    Thought i'd check back and didn't realise there would be so many more comments.

    I've started to daily dose EI at half the dose each day, for 6 days and the 7th being rest day + water change. I dose full EI, with 12.5 macros 3 hours before i dose 12.5ml micros just before my lights turn on. I did this just so i know all ferts are available everyday, mainly iron. I've seen positive results already with my new growth on ludwigia being red rather than orange, so i seem to be going in the right direction.

    Per week im dosing:
    No3 20ppm
    K 28ppm
    P04 4.5ppm
    Mg 8ppm
    Fe 1-1.2ppm (~0.1edta + ~0.1dpta)

    I can't work out this deficiency on my hygrophillia, basically leaf rolling/wavy edge. Co2 and flow is not an issue for this particular plant as it gets the most amount of flow and the diffuser is right next to them and i have a 1.1/1.2 ph drop.

    Nutrients are at "max" and i dont have excessive lighting as i only use a fluval fresh and planted 2.0.

    Only thing i can think of is daily top up with tap water increasing the Calcium content making it "harder" to uptake/find mg and possibly other nutrients?
    Might get some RO from lfs for top ups or a bucket of rainwater and see if that stops it.

    Any help with this deficiency would be much appreciated.

    Thanks IMG_20191201_142128.jpg IMG_20191201_142455.jpg
     
    Last edited: 1 Dec 2019
  16. ian_m

    ian_m Global Moderator Staff Member

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    You shouldn't dose macros and micros on the same day as the iron in micro reacts with phosphate in macro and precipitates out and becomes unavailable to plants. A sure fire way, seen many times here, to get iron deficiency.

    This is why EI method is dosing macro and micro on alternate days to prevent this reaction.
     
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  17. Sammy Islam

    Sammy Islam Member

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    Yes i understand but many people dose both on the same day at the same time without problems probably due to dilution rate. I see no cloudyness, my tank is crystal clear. My ph goes above 7.5 after my tank degasses so my iron may not be available the next day. So thats why i'm daily dosing to ensure iron availability. If there was a reaction my tank would not be clear right? Ive been dosing full EI on alternate days for ages and my co2 is very high, 1.2ph drop and probably like 15bps into in tank diffuser. Always seem to have iron deficiency so ive decided to dose daily and have seen improvement already but the leaf rolling/wavy edge is annoying.
     
    Last edited: 2 Dec 2019
  18. Thumper

    Thumper Member

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    Not in usual dosings. At pH 7 you can dose 1,3mg/L PO4 and 0,756mg/L Fe(III) without reactions. If you have chelated iron its even higher, as its not 100% available at all times.
     
  19. Sammy Islam

    Sammy Islam Member

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    Thanks. If there was a reaction my tank would be cloudy right?

    Please can someone shed some light on the leaf curling issue? Its my main problem in my tank, 90% of the plants are healthy and algae free, only a few old leaves and brown algae and a little bit of bba which gets trimmed out whenever i see it.
     
  20. ian_m

    ian_m Global Moderator Staff Member

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    No, as the iron dose in micro is quite small you will be unlikely to see cloudiness. People have mixed macro and micro, spun in centrifuge and verified using lab grade test equipment that the remaining liquid no longer contained any significant iron in solution. I tried repeating this, mixing my macro and micro, leaving for a week and I saw no sign of precipitation probably as concentration too small, probably should have tried much stronger solutions so that the precipitate would be visible. In the end the research has been done and verified, years ago, results were dose macro and micro alternate days.

    It has been seen here numerous times, with people having iron deficiency in their plants, due to adding macro and micro at the same time. Can take months for iron deficiency issues to appear, due to the very small amounts plants actually need.

    Iron deficiency in plants, yellowing of existing leaves and new leaves being yellow, is similar to magnesium, deficiency except that leaves recover from magnesium deficiency, as magnesium is mobile in plants, but leaves do not recover from iron deficiency. Some people report algae appearing on the leaves first before the leaves turn yellow underneath the algae.

    This can be caused by a whole variety of issues, the most common issue usually is potassium deficiency.

    Lack of potassium due to reaction with iron in micro ????? Hmmm.

    Handy link to plant health issues.
    http://www.theplantedtank.co.uk/deficiencies.htm
     
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