Liquid Bio Carbon

Polly

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I've read that some of you are trying out Liquid Bio Carbon.

I'm just wondering whether any of you have seen any difference between that and gluteraldehyde based product?

Not using it to supplement CO2 and not for algae issues. Simply to help plants grow better :)

I'm swapping from Glute-based Liquid Carbon and have bought Microbe Lift Bio Carbon. At the moment I'm using a half dose of Glute-based LC, and 1ml of the Bio Carbon - I'm actually growing Vallis for the first time in years! Probably because of the teaspoon of coral gravel in the filter sponge to add a tiny amount of calcium which is almost non existent in my tap water. I'd prefer small dolomite chips for the added magnesium, but haven't found a source of those.

The Glute-based LC is running out soon and I'm nervous about using only the Bio Carbon - I did a gradual reduction of Glute-based LC last year, and in the last 6 month all of the plants suffered, some so badly I lost them!

I'm hoping not to repeat that this time.



Thanks for any answers you may have x
 

Nuno Gomes

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Your vals will probably grow better without any of those products...vals are known to not like gluteraldehyde based products.
 

Polly

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nuno, the last Vals I tried to grow melted quickly - no Glute in the tank. The rest of the plants I had were thriving with Glute based LC until i gradually stopped it. then over the next 6 months they started failing ;)

The Vals I have now are thriving and multipying on a half dose. My question is whether anyone has experienced growth with only Non Glute LC. This one is based on Fulvic and Humic acids, and bacteria.
 
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akwarium

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Glutaraldehyde can not help plants grow better, it just can't. It can make your tank look a bit better in two ways: in a full dosing it will kill/reduce algae, ( in lower doses it might stimulate algae) and second: it will lower plant growth and thereby their need for nutrients, in other words it does not add CO2 (in significant amounts) it just lowers the need for it. ( and for other nutrients as well)

Humic acids en Fulvic acids can have positive effects, they are natural chelators and can make micro nutrients more available for your plants. They also might have a positive effect on beneficial bacteria and fungi. In clean tanks with a regime of frequent and large water changes it might be a good idea to add humic/fluvic acids.

What is has to do with Carbon really puzzles me.....
 

X3NiTH

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Humic acid is a Long Chain Carbon molecule and when it ends up in a plant it will be scavenged for the nutrients it has chelated and also the molecule itself will be carved up for use with carbon being a significant constituent. Plants do well eating the remains of other plants.
 

akwarium

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Humic acid is a Long Chain Carbon molecule and when it ends up in a plant it will be scavenged for the nutrients it has chelated and also the molecule itself will be carved up for use with carbon being a significant constituent. Plants do well eating the remains of other plants.
I can see that, but would that be in significant quantities?
 

Polly

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akwarium,

Glutaraldehyde can not help plants grow better, it just can't. It can make your tank look a bit better in two ways: in a full dosing it will kill/reduce algae, ( in lower doses it might stimulate algae) and second: it will lower plant growth and thereby their need for nutrients, in other words it does not add CO2 (in significant amounts) it just lowers the need for it. ( and for other nutrients as well)
Having documented the growth of the plants in my tank last year, whilst using Glute-based LC, I beg to differ. A sequence of photos shows what happened over the last year that the experiment ran, you can find it here - https://www.ukaps.org/forum/threads/back-from-the-brink.56890/
 

ian_m

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Glutaraldehyde can not help plants grow better, it just can't. It can make your tank look a bit better in two ways...
Er no. It has been proved many many times glutaraldehyde does promote plant growth in a similar way to adding CO2 promotes plant growth. Glutaraldehyde is not as effective as CO2, in the doses we use, but certainly is used by plants as a carbon source. Things like Excel and other proprietary liquid carbons tends to be polymerised versions of glutaraldehyde that have a longer "half life" in the tank, thus can be more effective than straight glutaraldehyde, which can quickly degrade in the tank.

The theory is that glutaraldehyde is similar to the plants intermediate products in converting CO2 to carbohydrates, thus the plant uses it as a carbon source starting point rather that CO2.
 

akwarium

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Er no. It has been proved many many times glutaraldehyde does promote plant growth in a similar way to adding CO2 promotes plant growth. Glutaraldehyde is not as effective as CO2, in the doses we use, but certainly is used by plants as a carbon source. Things like Excel and other proprietary liquid carbons tends to be polymerised versions of glutaraldehyde that have a longer "half life" in the tank, thus can be more effective than straight glutaraldehyde, which can quickly degrade in the tank.

The theory is that glutaraldehyde is similar to the plants intermediate products in converting CO2 to carbohydrates, thus the plant uses it as a carbon source starting point rather that CO2.
if it is proven so many many times, then it can't be a problem to show some of that prove....?
 

dw1305

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Hi all,
then it can't be a problem to show some of that prove....?
It isn't a product I would ever use, as either an algicide or carbon source. There is this thread <"How much CO2 does .....">.

I'm not sure there are any scientific references for glutaraldehyde as an organic carbon supplement, but it is really difficult to search for on Google Scholar, because it has a large number of applications as a medical sterilant and for the "fixation" of biological tissue.

cheers Darrel
 

akwarium

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Plants can uptake carbon in other forms then CO2, how much depends on the form, plant species and age, amounts, other circumstances etc: Adding a little sugar to the water is known to increase growth considerably but in some species more then others. Test with CMC (cattle manure compost) showed 0.2 to nearly 1 % of carbon in rice plants came directly from the compost as organic carbon.

For glutaraldehyde data is absent for as far as I know, I can't find anything and I did search for it.

What is known, and with loads of scientific data ,is that it is a biocide. It kills living cells by crosslinking proteins. It is hard to believe it will be harmless or even beneficial in plant cells.

Typically 30 to 40 % of the dry weight of plants is carbon, so for plant growth quite a lot of carbon is needed. A normal dose of liquid carbon will at most ad a few ppm of carbon, and even if all of it is used, either as a whole or because it degraded in to CO2, I do not believe it can have a noticeable effect in terms of growth.

Like I have said, it can improve the balance between algae and plants or plants and ferts in your tank and thereby make it look better. This can be explained by the known and scientifically described effects of glutaraldehyde. And is supported by the experience of many aquascapers.

But the theory that is an alternative carbon source is in my opinion unlikely, and unless someone can present scientific data that shows otherwise... I stick by my original opinion that it can not make plants grow.

And to return to the original question humic and fluvic acids are very different then gluteraldehyde, so hard to predict the effect it will have on the plants/tank.
 

ian_m

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r glutaraldehyde data is absent for as far as I know, I can't find anything and I did search for it.
There is data, I have seen correctly done scientific reports where radioactive labelled glutaraldehyde (or equivalent) was used and it was quickly taken up and incorporated aquatic plants. May not be available on-line of course, on-line scientific & other reports is still less than 1% of that available in paper form :(
 

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