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EI Dry Salts Dosing

MirandaB

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Hi All,
Currently have a Roma 90lt,with 2x24w T5HO'S,lights are on 7 hours with CO2 coming on 2 hours before lights and off 1 hour before lights off.
Water changes 50% weekly.
I was dosing Neutro+ daily and Neutro CO2 but decided to switch to EI dry salts dosed straight into the tank as didn't really fancy paying for water lol but my plants don't seem to be doing as well on the regime.
Nothing really specific that I can put my finger on but the growth has slowed quite a bit and some plants seem a paler green although I have no algae problems which is always a bonus :)
I bought the hardwater EI kit and am dosing for 100-150 lts as the dosage rates given are for the middle of the range so I went into the next bracket.
Is it just my imagination,am I doing some wrong?
Would I be better to mix up a solution myself and go back to dosing daily?
 

LondonDragon

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Would I be better to mix up a solution myself and go back to dosing daily?
Makes no difference dosing liquid or powder, but it would be best to dose micro and macro on alternate days as per the EI guidelines.
 

MirandaB

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I'll persevere with it and see if things improve,perhaps it's just the plants adjusting to the different dosing method or am I talking complete nonsense :crazy:
 

LondonDragon

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How long you been dosing EI? It can take up to two weeks before you start seeing noticeable improvements, your light is not high and also depends how much CO2 you pump into the tank. Just keep going and adjust if neceassy, don't make any changes for at least two weeks, and keep up with the tank maintenance ;)
 

MirandaB

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How long you been dosing EI? It can take up to two weeks before you start seeing noticeable improvements, your light is not high and also depends how much CO2 you pump into the tank. Just keep going and adjust if neceassy, don't make any changes for at least two weeks, and keep up with the tank maintenance ;)

Would you believe just coming up for 2 weeks,obviously me being too impatient :rolleyes: CO2 is not particularly high at about 2bps but as I say I have virtually zero algae and things seem to be ticking along nicely apart from the slower growth/slightly paler leaves.
I'm still sort of feeling my way with the CO2 as I discovered UKAPS after I started with fish etc but planning on another smaller tank to have a more scientific go at aquascaping :)
 

LondonDragon

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Do you measure CO2 with a drop checker? 2bps on a 90 liter seems on the low side, together with the average lighting, things will grow slower, but slow is not bad, less pruning, less work ;)
 

MirandaB

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I was measuring with a drop checker until I got a loach get up into it (god knows how!) and it was showing green but not lime green.
PH normally 8.2 and at lights on it's down to 7.
Do you think I should up the bps?
Don't really want to increase lighting levels as I seem to have virtually no algae and would quite like to keep it that way :p
 

dw1305

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Hi all,
Give it a couple of weeks, you may need to add magnesium to your dosing, after reading a couple of darrels threads most of the hard water in uk comes from calcium (I think) so could be a lack of magnesium.
Yes that is right, a lot of the aquifers in the S & E. of the UK are chalk, which is pure CaCO3.It is worth adding some "Epsom Salts", if it isn't magnesium it doesn't do any harm, and if it is you get a pretty rapid greening.

There are local areas with more magnesium in the soil and water, but they are pretty limited. The Lizard peninsula (derived from serpentine), a thin band of dolomitic limestone running from the Midlands NE towards Newcastle, and local areas like Droitwich, Epsom etc where there are evaporite deposits. A fuller explanation is here: <Magnesium Sulphate in Hard Water? | UK Aquatic Plant Society>.
cheers Darrel
 

dw1305

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dw1305

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Hi all,
As Darrel says...its full of water so you don't need to be that precise.
You can't really over-dose magnesium, so tea spoons are fine.

I shouldn't be saying this, but I don't usually measure the fertiliser I add, I just tip out an amount that looks about right for the tank and chuck it in. I'm a little more circumspect if it contains ammonia or urea.

Even in the lab where we've got 4 place balances etc, when I'm making solutions with ordinary reagents, I tend to use serial dilution for solutions of low molarity. So rather than weighing out 0.05g and making up a 1000cm3 with deionised water, I'll weight out 5g, make it up to a litre, and then take 10cm3 of that solution and make that up to a litre. It sounds a silly way to do it, but it is actually more accurate for me.

I don't recommend the non-weighing method for micro-nutrients, where a little goes a long way and toxicity is an ever present risk.

cheers Darrel
 

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